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Medical Marijuana Discrimination

Are you being treated differently at work because you have a disability or are using Medical Marijuana? Let our York, Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Discrimination Employment Lawyers assist you with your case.

We review cases where medical marijuana discrimination is an issue, and most clients don’t know their rights or what to do.

The Pennsylvania General Assembly passed the Medical Marijuana Act (Act 16) on April 17, 2016, legalizing the possession, sale, and consumption of medical cannabis. Only patients and caregivers who are Pennsylvania residents can obtain medical cannabis from dispensaries in the state under Pennsylvania marijuana laws.

The Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Act provides protections for workers who are using Medical Marijuana. Donham Law receives calls frequently regarding workers who are being fired because they use Medical Marijuana and by individuals who have sought employment and were not hired because of their certified use of Medical Marijuana.

What is Medical Marijuana Discrimination?

The Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Act (Act 16) (MMA) protects registered patients from unfair discrimination in the workplace without requiring employers to violate federal law. It also prohibits patients from participating in certain high-risk activities while using medical marijuana and allows employers to ensure a safe workplace.

  • Employers are not permitted to discriminate against employees for their status as a certified patient using medical Marijuana.
  • Safety Exceptions: employees whom have more than 10 nanograms* per milliliter of THC in their blood in serum may not operate or be in physical control of 1) chemicals that require a federal or state permit or 2) a high-voltage electricity or other public utility.
  • Employers are not required at present to make accommodations for the use of medical marijuana on the property or premises of any place of employment.
  • Employers may discipline employees for being under the influence of medical marijuana in the workplace or for working while under the influence of medical marijuana when the employee's conduct falls below the standard of care normally accepted for that position. However, employers must be cautious not to violate a right to privacy or disability discrimination laws.
  • Employers do not have to take any action violating federal law. However, there are nuances to the current federal laws and changing state laws that are providing protections.
  • Employers may prohibit employees who are patients of Medical Marijuana from performing mining or any other employment duties at heights or in confined spaces while under the influence of marijuana.
  • Employers may prohibit employees who are patients of Medical Marijuana from performing any task which the employer deems life-threatening to the employee or other employees while under the influence of marijuana. In addition, the prohibition shall not be deemed an adverse employment action even if the prohibition results in financial harm for the patient. However, this area is rife with land mines so employers must be cautious since they may run afoul of other statutes such as the Family Medical Leave Act or state MM laws.
What Would an Example of Disability Discrimination be?

Our Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Discrimination Employment Lawyers can assist you in better understanding what discrimination is in the workplace.

If you’re in York, Pennsylvania with a Medical Marijuana Discrimination issue we can help. An example of disability discrimination could be when a worker has been out due to a workplace injury and has a discussion with the human resources department about their use of Medical Marijuana and then are fired.

Also, our Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Discrimination lawyers also receive calls about workers who have been seeking employment but are turned away once the worker has mentioned their use of Medical Marijuana. This is a violation of the MMA.

What Should I do If I’m Injured at Work?
  1. Communicate with your supervisor and with your human relations or human resources departments to make sure they know what your needs are.
  2. Apply for Workers Compensation.
  3. Maintain written records of medical treatment and company actions
  4. Ask for Family Medical Leave if available.
Are There Other Laws That Protect a Person using Medical Marijuana?

The Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (PHRA)

This act makes it illegal for private employers, state and local governments, unions or employment agencies to discriminate against qualified individuals who are disabled from participating in promotions/job opportunities, increased training, pay increases, or any other aspect of employment including being fired. Our Pennsylvania disability discrimination lawyers know how to protect your rights.

Jeremy Donham | Medical Marijuana Discrimination Employment Attorney

Employers have a responsibility to prevent harassment and/or termination of workers whom use Medical Marijuana. When an employer breaches these duties the employer will often be responsible both for the employee’s lost wages and other damages.

If you feel like you’ve been discriminated against at work because of using Medical Marijuana seek help from our Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Discrimination Employment Attorneys.

At Donham Law, we will fight for you! Call 717.881.7855, or fill out our contact form.

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