What Happens If You Fail the Test?
You’re a hard worker and a good employee. You always give your full effort when on the job. But when you’re off the clock, you like to let your hair down. That shouldn’t matter to your employer, should it? Shouldn’t you be able to do what you choose in your own free time, provided it doesn’t affect your job performance or your employer? Not necessarily. Under both state and federal law in Texas, there’s virtually nothing to prevent an employer from asking you to submit to regular or random drug testing as a condition of your employment. In fact, drug testing may be mandatory for certain types of employees or for workers of companies who secure certain types of government contracts or grants.
Can You Refuse to Take a Work-Related Test in Texas?
Absolutely. There’s nothing that allows an employer to compel you to take a test. However, because of the absence of any prohibitions on work-related drug testing in Texas, there’s also nothing to prevent an employer from terminating an employee who opts not to take a drug test.
Even though Texas is an “at will” state for employment law purposes, employers should strive to make certain that employees are aware of mandatory drug testing. The best ways to do this are to either:
- Advise the employee in writing or in the presence of witnesses of the drug testing requirement, indicating that refusal to test may lead to termination
- Hold a meeting for all affected employees, documenting attendance and having employees acknowledge receipt of the company drug testing policy
Can An Employer Selectively Choose Which Employees Must Take a Drug Test?
An employer need not subject all employees to the same type of drug testing. That being said, though, the drug testing should not take the form of discrimination based on the test taker’s membership in a protected class. For example, a practice of only testing females or persons of a particular ethnic or racial background will likely run afoul of the law.
Is An Employer Required to Impose Progressive Discipline for Violation of Company Drug Policies?
No. While most companies will advise employees in advance that any violation of company drug policy may lead to termination, there’s no requirement that a company engage in such a practice. Again, though, employers must be careful not to engage in disciplinary practices that may be construed as prohibited workplace discrimination.
Contact the Proven Employment Lawyers at Bailey & Galyen
At the law office of Bailey & Galyen, we have a thorough knowledge and understanding of employment and labor law and can help you quickly determine if your rights have been violated. If you have been asked to take a drug test or if you’ve already taken and failed one, we can help. We offer a free initial consultation to every client. To speak with an experienced and effective employment law attorney, contact us by e-mail or 844-402-2992 call our offices at one of the convenient locations listed below. We will take your call 24 hours a day, seven days a week.