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Firing for positive drug test? Prepare to defend test validity

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in Employee Benefits Program,Firing,Human Resources

Generally, employees can appeal if they’re denied unemployment compensation because they were fired for cause. To win, they must show they were fired without just cause. However, the rules change when an employee is fired for a positive drug test. Then the employer must show the test was valid.

Recent case: Jovon Silkert was fired from his job at Aaron Rents after testing positive for marijuana. He was denied unemployment benefits and appealed, claiming he had never smoked the drug.

The Court of Appeals of Ohio ruled that the case should be sent back for rehearing. It ordered the employer to present evidence that the test was administered properly and was a reliable test. (Silkert v. Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, No. 22936, Court of Appeals of Ohio, Second Appellate District, 2009)

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