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Will Changes to Illinois Medical Marijuana Impact Your Company?

January 31 just around the corner, the changes that have happened recently with the Illinois medical marijuana pilot program have the potential to impact your company. Put into place to provide With alternative pain management options due to the opioid crisis, the change to the program allows patients receiving opioid pain medications who are not already part of the medical marijuana program to switch to that program. But what does it mean for your company and what impact will it have overall? Here's a quick look to help get you started.

  • If your business involves driving, you should be aware that participants in the program are not allowed to hold a commercial driver's license or bus driver's license. It would be strongly recommended that anyone participating in the program is restricted in dangerous tasks or the use of heavy machinery as well, if for absolutely no other reason that liability.

  • If an employee is claiming that they failed a drug test because they are in the program, it's important to know that individuals in the program must be over the age of 21, and are not allowed to be in both the original Medical Cannabis Pilot Program and the Opioid Alternative Pilot Program at the same time. If the employee makes claims to the contrary, they should be considered with strong scrutiny.

  • Because of the new nature of the pilot programs, there is still some question that is being hashed out in the court system as to HIPPA protections for employees versus the right of the employer to know when an employee is using a mind-altering substance. If the situation arises in your business, you should immediately seek legal counsel on the issue to protect your assets.

By staying on top of the changes to the Illinois medical marijuana pilot program, you can ensure that your company continues to operate safely and within the letter of the law with regards to Illinois employment laws and HIPPA. It's certainly understandable to still have questions, however, given the newness of the program change. If you need help with determining your rights and responsibilities, AccountRely can help. We have highly trained human resources professionals who are happy to help consult with your business needs, just contact us today to get started!

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