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Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
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Experience:  Employment Law Expert
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I am a longtime survey supervisor company and this morning I

Customer Question

I am a longtime survey supervisor for a company and this morning I get a call stating I have to leave a job for a client because of a new rule by the client stating no employee can work for them that has every failed a drug test, in 2003, I refused a drug test knowing the consequences would be a termination and they wanted me to complete 30 days of classes and come back to work, I did as I was instructed to do, came back to work, and have passed all random drug test and have been clean ever since 2003, I have done several jobs for this same client, my offense was over 13 years ago, I am not terminated but am worried this will be a precedent that could effect my employment a future, do they have a right to go back 13 years into my past? also I never gave a failed test so there is no record whatsover of ever using drugs or alcohol, I only refused, I feel that after 13 years this is very discriminatory, I have no problem taking any random test
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 5 months ago.

Hello and thank you for contacting us. This is Dwayne B. and I’m an expert here and looking forward to assisting you today. If at any point any of my answers aren’t clear please don’t hesitate to ask for clarification. Also, I can only answer the questions you specifically ask and based on the facts that you give so please be sure that you ask the questions you want to ask and provide all necessary facts. Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms.

Unfortunately, Texas is what is known as an "employment at will state" which means an employer can do pretty much as thy see fit so long as it isn't motivated by race, age, gender, etc.

Texas doesn't have ny laws restricting how long a private employer can go back in time to sanction an employee or what type of thing they can look at in deciding a sanction.

In addition, what makes it even harder is that your employer is just following the directions of a client and that provides another level of protection for them.

Many people believe that they have more rights as an employee than they do, Texas is one of the strongest pro-employer states that there is, so I'm going to put a link here to the TWC website that explains a little about employment at will in Texas.

http://www.twc.state.tx.us/news/efte/pay_and_policies_general.html

You can consider hiring an attorney to write the company a letter advising them that releasing any information about your drug test is a violation of HIPAA as well as informing them that a failure to take a drug test is not the same as failing one. However, those are just threats, a private citizen can't sue someone for violating HIPAA.

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