The issue of medical marijuana and the workplace is a precarious one. With over 20 states now having legalized medical marijuana, many questions have arisen pertaining to the legality around usage in the workplace, or while on the job.
Even more questions arise around the necessity of some marijuana-based products for health ailments. Most recently, an Auburn football walk-on lost his opportunity due to his usage of CBD oil to cure his debilitating epilepsy.
Current Federal CBD Oil Laws
The ambiguities in current federal drug laws leave much to be determined when it comes to the use of these Marijuana extracts.
The main “ingredient” in CBD oil is called cannabidiol. A brief explanation of this extract and the Nebraska legal issues surrounding it can be found in this blog. CBD and cannabidiol is illegal in the state of Nebraska. The only time it will not be construed as an illegal controlled substance is when the University of Nebraska uses it for their own research purposes. So most likely if you’re using CBD oil, no matter if you have a prescription to use it in another state, you will be charged with some form of drug crime if caught with it in Nebraska.
From this, you can obviously see that it would be illegal for any professional to possess, leading to a revocation of their license if found out. However, other states are not so strict.
CBD and THC
In many states with legalized medical marijuana, just the mere presence of CBD or THC in one’s bloodstream isn’t enough for revocation. In most cases, the accused has the right to due process before a license revocation occurs. If their level of CBD remains constant, relatively low, and is only used for strictly medical purposes, then in most cases (but not all), CBD usage is okay. However, if the level of usage rises to a level where one might question if it’s a substance abuse problem, then a revocation is much more likely. And obviously it depends on the state’s drug laws. Alabama is going to be harsher on usage (like Nebraska). Oregon will be more lenient.
The grounds surrounding revocation often pertain to if the professional is acting in “unprofessional conduct”. Additionally, if the party using CBD commits a cannabis-related crime, or they become incapacitated or impaired then again, revocation is much more likely.
Although CBD oils and products generally have very low psychoactive properties, it depends on the type of oil/product and the ratio of cannabidiol to THC. Higher THC levels = higher psychoactive properties. So generally, CBD oils with minute amounts of THC in them will cause the least amount of problems. If a professional is using CBD oil with low levels of THC then revocation may be less likely (although one should never be too sure without direct indication of what’s legal from their employer).
Is hemp oil safe?
To further complicate things, hemp oil is completely legal in America and has been for many years, long before any states had legal marijuana. The differences between CBD and hemp oil are small but significant enough for the federal government to feel the need to enforce laws on one and not the other.
In summation, many states like Nebraska see all types of CBD oil as illegal substances, thus, usage of such substances will lead to license revocations. And if you’re in a state where medical or recreational marijuana usage is legal; it’s a good idea to check with your employer before trying anything.If you or a loved one has been charged with any type of controlled substance charge contact the experienced and relentless attorneys at Berry Law Firm.