the failed test came from my first visit to my pain management doctors my former employer never tested me i do however have a medical marijuana card and now do not use marijuana now for the reason i dont want to jeporidize my case legally can i lose my case based on that
"Intoxication" may affect your eligibility to workers compensation benefits if it it can be shown that the injury would not have occurred but/for the intoxication. As always, however, if you have concerns, you should contact an attorney in your state to discuss the specifics of your case.
Francis J. Lafferty, IV, Esquire Helping injured workers throughout Pennsylvania. [email protected] www.norlaflaw.com DISCLAIMER: This post is intended as general information applicable only to the state of Pennsylvania and is personal in nature, not professional in nature. The information given is based strictly upon the facts provided. This post is not intended to create an attorney client relationship, or to provide any specific guarantee of confidentiality.
Some employers give a post-injury drug test because intoxication is an affirmative defense to a WC claim. If they did, and it came up positive, the WC claim could be denied. If the employer did not conduct a post-injury drug test, it is a little late now. However, staying off Weed until the claim is over may be a good plan.
I am not a doctor. If you have cancer, and MJ is the only way to relieve the chemotherapy sickness, perhaps you should tell the Pain Management doctor WHY you smoke marijuana. I am sure the Pain Management doctors are VERY familiar with the proper and improper use of THC in a medical context. If you were merely using the Card to buy dope, then some actions have consequences. One may be an Intoxication Defense for no great medical reason. Will they win? Probably not. Will your case get rejected, delayed, hindered, decreased, and questioned? Absolutely.
I would have your drug test at the Deposition, and you would be testifying under oath regarding all the specifics supporting your medical need. I would then obtain all medical records substantiating that medical condition/need and provide them to the Pain Management specialists and evaluating physicians. That would either substantiate your need for marijuana, or trash your credibility on 3 or 4 other close calls like subjective pain, Activities of Daily Living, and/or compensability of the actual injury.
Good Luck. The Defense Attorney on your case may not be as thorough as I, so you might still slide through.
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Can your entire claim be deniedonly based on one positive THC finding in the blood study. No.?
Can an adjuster elect to stop Temporary Disability and refuse treatment because there is evidence to THC in the blood? Yes, then your lawyer (OR YOU) take the report from the Pain Mgt and Treating PHysicians, file for an Expedited Hearing, and explain very very briefly to the judge that you used marijuana medicinally and stopped once referred to the Pain Specialist. In all likelihood, the Workers Comp judge would order the INsurer to resume TTD Payments and authorizing treatment. CAN THE ADJUSTER TURN YOU INTO the FEDERAL GOVT for prosecution of use of an illegal sustance? Absolutely. Will the feds bother with you? Possibly but extremely unlikely.
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