Nevada: Recreational Marijuana Use is Not Lawful Off-Duty Conduct


All Employers with NV Employees


August 11, 2022



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In Ceballos v. NP Palace, LLC, the Nevada Supreme Court said that recreational marijuana use is not lawful off-duty conduct, and employers do not have to accommodate recreational marijuana use. In this case, a table games dealer at a Las Vegas casino suffered a minor workplace injury. He tested positive for marijuana in a post-accident drug screen and the casino terminated his employment. The employee then filed a claim stating the discharge violated Nevada’s lawful off-duty conduct law because recreational marijuana use is lawful under Nevada law and his use of marijuana did not adversely affect his ability to perform his job or the safety of other employees. 


The Nevada Supreme Court disagreed with the employee and based its ruling on the fact that use of marijuana must be lawful under both state and federal law in order to qualify as lawful off-duty conduct. In this case, while marijuana use is lawful under Nevada law, marijuana is still a Schedule I controlled substance under federal law. Additionally, the employee’s personal right to use marijuana recreationally did not involve a compelling public policy, like employer-coerced criminal conduct, workers’ compensation for on-the-job injuries, or whistleblowing. Most importantly, the Nevada Supreme Court noted that if the Nevada legislature wanted employers to accommodate recreational marijuana use then it would have done so. 


Action Items 

  1. Have substance abuse policies and post-accident testing requirements updated, as necessary. 
  2. Have appropriate personnel trained on substance abuse policies. 
  3. Subscribers can call our HR On-Call Hotline at (888) 378-2456 for further assistance. 


Disclaimer: This document is designed to provide general information and guidance concerning employment-related issues. It is presented with the understanding that ManagEase is not engaged in rendering any legal opinions. If a legal opinion is needed, please contact the services of your own legal adviser. © 2022 ManagEase