Hi. I need to know what the employer\’s obligations are for the following situation, which is theoretical at this point but I want to be prepared as it may become real shortly. Scenario: We request that a worker submit to a drug test due to reasonable suspicion of substance use on site and they refuse on that date, but they then approach us with a clean test done days later on their own time. Are we allowed to refuse to consider that test as proof of compliance with our policy?
Almost certainly. The only possible exception would be where the drug testing policy specifically allows for employees to do their own testing. But that’s a highly unlikely scenario given the importance of employers’ controlling the testing to ensure a fair and honest result. The other problem, of course, is the timing and the fact that even if the testing was carried out properly and fairly, the negative result doesn’t show the employee was clean at the time of the reasonable suspicion justifying the testing.
The one thing you DO have to watch out for, however, is that you really did have reasonable suspicion justifying the test and took the necessary measures to initiate testing in accordance with the testing agreement. If so, you may have grounds to discipline the employee for refusing to submit to testing at the time. Hope that helps. Glenn