Can I be denied a job in the medical field due to the fact that I am a certified medical marijuana user?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can I be denied a job in the medical field due to the fact that I am a certified medical marijuana user?

I’m currently struggling with severe stomach pain and am licensed to use and
purchase medical marijuana.

Asked on December 28, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, New Hampshire


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you can be denied a job (or fired from a job) under the following three circumstances:
1) You bring, or state you will bring, the marijuana to work. The problem you face is that even if medical marijuana is legal in your state for your use, it is still an illegal drug (a CDS or controlled dangerous substance) under federal law. Employers cannot be forced to allow violations of federal law on their property/at their worksites.
2) You are under any influence of marijuana at work: you can be denied a job or fired if you are intoxicated by any substance (including ones completely legal, like alcohol) in the workplace.
3) The workplace is itself subject to regulations that require it to bar anyone using certain substances from it or from the job you want, including in this case marijuana (e.g. many commercial driving jobs do not allow drivers who are under certain medications), because the employer cannot be made to violate regulations governing it.
Otherwise, if you are merely a registered or certified user and do not bring it to work, are not under the influence at work, and are not in a workplace or position where you cannot have the job if using marijuana, they cannot deny you employment. If you are being denied employment when there is not good cause as per the above, contact the state department of labor (who may either help you themselves or may refer you to another agency which is better suited to assist).

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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