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Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 11262
Experience:  Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
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I was asked into office was told I was to submit a drug

Customer Question

I was asked into office was told I was to submit a drug test. I agreed. sat waiting in the office 15mins. Asked manager whats going on. she told me someone was coming to office. she asked if I was ok waiting I again agreed. I waited another 15mins. during my wait her (my manager) and another gentleman harassed me with questions about why I had no reaction when asked to submit the test I told them cause I had nothing to worry about. They continued to grind me. I got a little uncomfortable. I never once refused the test. I told my boss I as going to get something to drink. She informed me I wasn't allowed to leave the room for any reason. She in my opinion was not giving me the benefit of the doubt. I have had nothing but outstanding reviews. Had been employed for 2 1/2 yrs. She said if I left the room they would accept it as my resignation. I felt offended. So I got up and told her I am not resigning. She them proceeded to escort me out of the building like a criminal then informed me I was not allowed to return to my job ( Goodwill) or to have any contact with any employee. I did nothing wrong. I do not use drugs and can and would have passed the test. The questions she directed at me she or could have been asked if I had failed the test. I wrote corporate a email addressing this matter 30 mins after this occurred. I feel I was harassed. I was humiliated when I was escorted to the doors in front of my coworkers. Do I have a case to file
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Patrick, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thank you for entrusting me to assist you. I am very sorry to hear about this understandably upsetting experience.

Whether or not you have any recourse depends on whether your employer had reasonable suspicion that you were using drugs. "Reasonable suspicion" can be anything from a co-worker report that you were seen using drugs, to erratic behavior, to finding drug paraphanelia. Since what constitutes reasonable suspicion is rather subjective, it is fairly easy for an employer to meet this burden, but they do need something.

If your employer had reasonable suspicion to justify the drug test, then they did not violate any law by asking you offensive questions, telling you that they would consider it a resignation if you left the room, or by escorting you out, regardless of whether this caused humiliation. If they did not have reasonable suspicion to conduct the drug test, and if you did not plainly state your intent to resign (which you didn't), then this would be an unlawful termination as it occurred in response to your refusal to submit to an illegal drug test. Employment is normally "at will," meaning it can be terminated at any time for virtually any reason true or untrue, but there are certain "public policy" exceptions to this policy, and one would be terminating an employee in retaliation for refusing to submit to an illegal drug test.

So again, any recourse you may have turns on whether your employer can prove they had reasonable suspicion to test you. If they had absolutely no reason for doing what they did, then there is a good chance you have a case. But if they have a documented reason, even if it is one you completely disagree with, it will likely constitute reasonable suspicion and you will not have any recourse for what happened.

I hope that you find this information helpful. Please do not hesitate to let me know if you have any questions or concerns regarding the above and I will be more than happy to assist you further.

If you do not require any further assistance, please be so kind as to provide a positive rating of my service so that I may receive credit for assisting you. Very best wishes moving forward.

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