1) Texas Laws for Drug Testing
Texas law states that if a business wishes to take part in the workers’ compensation system and has over 15 employees than that employer shall formulate a policy for drug abuse prevention. Otherwise there is no state law or ordinance that mandates how a company must conduct their drug-testing program.
2) Types of Drugs
Texas has no state laws that require certain types of drugs be tested for. Alcohol, marijuana, barbiturates and many more can all be tested at the whim of an employer. There is no limitation for private or public companies as to what they can test for.
3) Company Disclosure
State law does require that each employee, on the first day of hire, be presented with a written drug abuse and testing policy. However no company, private or public, is required to post their policy in any public area on company grounds.
4) Written Policy
For those companies taking part in the workers’ compensation program there must be a written policy. The policy must included the following items:
-The purpose of the drug abuse policy must be explained in a coherent and easy to understand statement.
-The policy must list the types of drugs that will be tested for such as alcohol, illegal drugs, drugs that are huffed or inhaled and even prescription drugs if the company chooses.
-The policy must include and consequence for those who are caught or who test positive using drugs that are not allowed per company policy.
-The policy must include information on drug and alcohol treatment programs available and whether these programs are covered by the employers’ health insurance.
-Finally the policy must describe the drug testing the employer conducts to test for use and abuse.
5) Types of Drug Testing
Texas state law does not require any particular form of drug testing be conducted. The employer can choose the type of drug testing they prefer be it the standard urine test or the more sophisticated hair sample or blood test.
6) Who Pays
There is not statute that states the employer or the employee must pay for the drug testing. As standard practice the employer will foot the bill for the drug test.
7) The Lab
There is no law or ordinance in Texas stating drug testing must take place at a hospital, laboratory, or doctor’s office. It is up to the employer to decide where the want to send their employees for drug and alcohol testing.
8) Mandatory Drug Testing
Texas state law does not demand any particular employee be tested for drug and alcohol use. Not even those individuals involved with public safety or who perform dangerous tasks are required to be tested for drugs.
9) When Should Drug Testing Occur?
It is up to the company as to when they decide to perform Employee Drug Testing. Most employers will conduct drug-testing prior to an employees first day on the job but this is not a state law.
10) Testing Positive
Companies that participate in the workers’ compensation program must disclose any consequences set forth by the company if drug or alcohol use is confirmed. However there is no law or ordinance stating how a positive test must be handled by a company. There is one exception, if an employee has a commercial driver’s license and they do test positive they must be reported to the Department of Public Safety. And, anyone who falsifies a drug test can be prosecuted.
Written By: John C Arkin
This Article is written by Lena Butler, the author of Drug Testing Laws by State a longer version of this article is located at 10 Things to Know About Workplace Drug Testing State Laws and Regulations in Texas, and resources from other home health and wellness testing articles are used such as Employee Drug Testing.