10 Things to Know About Workplace Drug Testing State Laws and Regulations in Rhode Island

1) Laws of the state of Rhode Island

The laws of Rhode Island are mandatory. This means that if an employer has to get his employee tested for the use of drugs, it has to be done as per the laws of the state.

2) Who does the law apply to?

The drug testing law of the state of Rhode Island applies to any applicant or employee. This law however does not apply to the tests that are ordered federally. Employers who belong to the public sector are also excluded from these laws except for those whose work in the departments of fire, correction and law enforcement.

3) What substances are considered drugs?

The state laws do not define any particular substances as ‘drugs’. However the term does refer to a substance that is controlling in general.

4) Company policies

Rhode Island requires that all employers have a policy that is written.

5) Company notices and disclosure laws

The legal system does not specify particular laws pertaining to notices that the company is required to hand out to its employees. However the company must advice that an employee with a positive test is allowed to retest on his or her own, at the cost of the employer.

6) Who can be tested?

Any applicant who has been made an offer by the employer can be asked to do a test. The testing however need not specify whether it is one for alcohol or for drug abuse. The candidate is required to provide a sample of body fluid or tissue for this purpose. The employer can also ask an employee to test for substance abuse if he or she feels that the employee is under its influence and it is affecting the job performance of the employee. Those undergoing rehabilitation are also required to test.

7) Where can he testing be carried out?

Unlike a lot of the other states, testing in Rhode Island, in house and on site testing is not allowed by the employer. All testing has to be done at a lab that is federally certified.

8) Who bears the costs?

All costs of the testing must be borne by the employer, including the cost of a retest if the employee wishes to get one done independently.

9) Positive results and their effects on an employee’s job

If an employee tests positive for substance abuse, he or she might not lose their job on the first go. However they would have to clear all screen testing is carried out by a lab that is federally certified. The employer is also required to refer the employee to a professional of Substance Abuse that is licensed.

10) Fines that are applicable for violation

Violation of drug testing laws in the state of Rhode Island is a crime and anyone found guilty is applicable for a year in jail or a fine if $1000, sometimes even both.

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