Employer Protection: Drug Tests And Confidentiality

Employer Protection: Drug Tests And Confidentiality


Confidentiality is a big deal. If your company has employees that are subject to drug tests, you want the results of their test to stay private.

But what if it doesn't? It's possible for these confidential records to get released or subpoenaed by someone who isn't authorized by law.

Let's look at a few ways in which you can protect your business and its employees from this type of violation!

Table Of Contents:

15 ways to protect employers: From drug test confidentiality violations

  1. Require employees to submit a signed confidentiality agreement before being hired
  2. Create and enforce a strong company policy that prohibits the sharing of any information about drug tests with anyone not involved in their administration
  3. Implement a strict chain-of-custody protocol for all drug testing samples, including procedures for securing the sample and ensuring its integrity throughout the testing process
  4. Investigate any allegations of breach immediately and take appropriate disciplinary action against those who violate company policies or laws
  5. Confirm that an employee has completed his/her probationary period before releasing results from pre-employment screening to new employers or other third parties
  6. Train supervisors on how to recognize signs of substance abuse among employees, such as increased absenteeism and decreased performance; refer them for treatment if necessary
  7. Have a policy in place for employees who find out about the tests
  8. Educate your employees on the importance of keeping the drug test information private
  9. Consider using an outside testing company like LabCorp or Quest Diagnostics
  10. Drug testing should be done in a private area
  11. There should be no cameras present during the process
  12. The test subject's privacy should always come first - don't ask them to remove clothing or make any other personal adjustments
  13. Don't publicly disclose the results of a drug test, and if you do, it is important to keep all identifying information confidential
  14. Give employees an opportunity to provide an explanation for their positive result before taking disciplinary action against them
  15. Finally, make sure to keep the drug test information confidential

4 common scenarios: That violate drug test confidentiality

  1. Supervisor shares information about an employee's drug test with another staff member
  2. An employee discloses a coworker's drug test results in order to get them fired
  3. A person who is not associated with the company demands access to someone else's drug test
  4. Drug testing companies release information about an individual’s past or current tests without permission from that individual or their doctor.

What are some examples of how an employer could violate an employee's right to privacy?

Employers can violate an employee's right to privacy by asking them to divulge information about their drug tests, violating strict chain-of-custody protocol for the handling of samples, releasing information about past or current drug tests without permission from that individual or their doctor, and publicly disclosing the results of a drug test.

What are some things an employer can do to help protect its employees from violations of their privacy?

Employers can invest in a good drug testing services company, train supervisors on how to recognize the signs of substance abuse among their subordinates and refer them for treatment if necessary, have policies that prohibit the disclosure of any information about drug tests with anyone not involved in their administration, and educate employees about the importance of keeping drug test information private.

When should employers be able to ask for an employee's personal information?

Employers should be able to ask for an employee's personal information when the conditions are in their favor, such as:

  1. The employer has a policy in place that requires workers to provide certain information, such as background checks and other pre-employment screenings
  2. The employer needs access to the individual's name or contact details because it is related to employment
  3. There is legal obligation under law enforcement regulations. (e.g., Prison guards)
  4. If the worker signs a contract agreeing to provide personal details, including use of social media on company email accounts and computers - this would then be allowed without consent from the individual with his or her signature Record of past office mistakes justify asking for information on someone with errors though any history of any kind of substance abuse would not
  5. A person is being considered for a promotion and an employer wants to find out if they are qualified
  6. The employer needs the information in order to protect their employees, whether it be by preventing fraud or harassment
  7. Trying to obtain this type of personal information without justification will likely result in legal action. However, if the employer has a good reason for requesting this information, they should be able to.

What is the difference between public and private information in drug tests?

Drug test results are kept strictly private, and never revealed to others.

There is a difference between public and private information in drug tests. Public information like your name will be published if you test positive for drugs, so employers can take action accordingly.

Private information such as the details of your drug test eg: drug of abuse are never revealed to others unless it has been subpoenaed by law enforcement investigators or another entity with a legal right to request it.

Employer Rights

  1. The employer has the right to terminate an employee with or without cause
  2. Employers must provide employees with a written notice of termination, which includes the date on which they will be terminated and their last day of work.
  3. If an employer terminates an employee's employment because he or she violates company policy, then any compensation offered by that employer will be based on how long the employee had worked at that company and whether he or she was fired for just cause.


Drug screenings give employers peace of mind that their workplace is safe and free of drugs! They also provide protection for company assets, such as expensive machinery which could get damaged if someone using drugs works around it all day long! It's worth investing in these tests so you know your business is running smoothly without any risks involved."

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