New Jersey: Qualifying Conditions for Medical Marijuana Use Expanded

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All Employers with NJ Employees

EFFECTIVE

March 27, 2018

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Although New Jersey has legalized medical marijuana use since 2010, a recent executive order greatly expands the conditions for which individuals may apply for medical marijuana.  Previously, medical marijuana was approved to treat specified conditions, such as cancer, HIV/AIDs, and any terminal illness, among others.  Effective March 27, 2018, the New Jersey Department of Health has added five new categories of conditions that may be treated with medical marijuana.

The five new categories are chronic pain-related to musculoskeletal disorders, migraine, anxiety, chronic pain of visceral origin, and Tourette’s syndrome.  In addition, the executive order lowers patient and caregiver fees, allows dispensaries to add satellite locations, and proposes other legislative changes that increase the monthly product limit for patients.  With these reforms, it is expected that medical marijuana usage will substantially increase.

What does this mean for New Jersey employers?  Despite greater accessibility to medical marijuana, employers are still not required to permit marijuana use within the workplace.  Employers are still permitted to conduct drug testing, and New Jersey employers are not strictly required to accommodate medical marijuana users.  However, recent cases in other states suggest that the line between enforcing a drug-free workplace and discriminating against employees for their medical condition may be a fine line indeed.  Legalization remains an area of developing law, and employers would be wise to work with local counsel when making employment decisions related to marijuana use.

Action Items

  1. Review the New Jersey Department of Health’s report on the executive order here.
  2. 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.

© 2018 ManagEase

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