Cannabis Law Effective August 1, 2023: Employer Impacts

The effective date of the majority of the Cannabis law is August 1, 2023, including the provisions pertaining to employees and employers. Employers need to be aware of changes to the protections for medical cannabis registry program participants, new prohibitions on taking adverse employment action against applicants and current employees for engaging in the enjoyment of the now lawful consumable cannabis products, new restrictions on employer policies pertaining to cannabis use, and changes to allowable drug testing of employees.

What can I continue to do as an employer as it pertains to restricting cannabis use by my employees?

Employers can continue to prohibit “cannabis use, possession, impairment, sale, and transfer during working hours, on work premises, or while operating an employer’s vehicle, machinery, or equipment,” if they adopt a written policy in compliance with the new statute.

Another right employers continue to have is the ability to take adverse employment action against an employee or refuse to hire an individual “if a failure to do so would violate federal or state law or regulations or cause an employer to lose a monetary or licensing-related benefit under federal law or regulations.”

What can I no longer do as an employer as it pertains to restricting cannabis use by my employees?

You can no longer terminate an employee solely for testing positive for cannabis. You can no longer terminate someone for using, possessing, selling, or transferring cannabis at work (unless you adopt and implement a written policy). You can no longer test for cannabis without updating your policy.

Where can I find the new law?

Both the House of Representatives and the Senate have passed HF100A. The bill has not been signed in to law by the Governor at this time, it is anticipated that he sign within the next week. Key employment provisions in the PDF can be located on pages: 119, 124, 248, 250, 251, and 255. Eckberg Lammers is available to provide clients assistance in drafting and updating their drug, alcohol, and cannabis policies.


If you have any questions about creating or implementing a policy of progressive discipline, please contact Labor & Employment attorneys at (651) 439-2878.