Will A Failed Drug Test Affect My Workers’ Comp?
Let’s not be naive. A lot of people use illegal recreational drugs, and a good many workers may fail a drug test after being legitimately injured on the job. You may not have been impaired at all at the time of your accident, but traces of a drug may have still been in your system at the time of your injury.
What many workers don’t know is this: if you failed your drug test, you most likely will still have a strong workers’ compensation case. If your employer or the insurance company is trying to deny your Georgia workers’ comp benefits on the basis of a failed drug test, contact us. Our work injury attorneys can advise you and fight to get you WC benefits even with a failed drug test.
What You Need To Know
There is a lot of misinformation about workers’ compensation and drug test results. Here is some clarification:
- First of all, the drug test has to be given within eight hours of the injury. If the test is given after the eight hours, the burden is on your employer to show that the drugs in your system caused your injury.
- In most work injuries, the drugs in the worker’s system did not cause the injury. Why should your workers’ compensation claim be denied if you took drugs outside of work several weeks before the accident?
- Even if the drug test was given within the eight-hour window, if you were not impaired at work at the time of your injury by the drugs in your system, you should still have a strong workers’ compensation claim.
Every Case Is Different
Here are a couple of clear examples of work injuries that have nothing to do with drug test results.
1. You are on duty, driving as part of your job, and while sitting at a red light, you are hit from behind and injured. How would drugs in your system have anything to do with being injured in this scenario? They don’t. The accident and injury were totally the fault of someone else, and a failed drug test should have no bearing on your case.
2. You are working in a warehouse, pushing a cart full of merchandise, minding your own business, just doing your job, when a coworker driving a forklift, not paying attention, runs you down from behind. Again, in this scenario, the drugs in your system did not cause your work injury.
Every workers’ comp situation involving a failed drug test is very fact-specific, but in the overwhelming majority of cases with failed drug tests, the insurance company will eventually have to pay you because it is very difficult to show that drugs in your system were the direct cause of your work injury.
See our Workers’ Comp FAQ to learn more about the steps you should take after a work injury.
What If I Was Fired After Failing A Drug Test?
Your employer may fire you after you fail a drug test. That is their right if they want to have a drug-free workplace. However, even if you are fired for failing a drug test, your employer and the insurance company will still have to pay your workers’ compensation benefits if you were legitimately injured on the job.
In other words, do not despair if your workers’ compensation claim is denied for failing a drug test. If you are really injured, our workers’ comp lawyers will still make a very strong case for you.
Contact Us For A Free Consultation
If you have questions about workers’ comp eligibility, we can help. To arrange a free consultation, please call 404-692-7474 or send us an email. We represent injured workers in Atlanta and throughout Georgia.
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