Connecticut Federal Court Rules Federal Law Does Not Preempt Connecticut Medical Marijuana Law

Friday, August 25, 2017
The U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut has held in Noffsinger v. SSC Niantic Operating Co., LLC, d/b/a Bride Brook Health & Rehab. Ctr. (Aug. 8, 2017) that federal law does not preempt the Connecticut medical marijuana statute’s prohibition on employers’ firing or refusing to hire qualified medical marijuana patients. The court also held that the Connecticut Palliative Use of Marijuana Act (PUMA) provides a private right of action for individuals claiming to be discriminated against as a result of their qualifying patient status. The Noffsinger case makes it very difficult for employers to know what to do when drug testing for marijuana. Employers in Connecticut run the risk of being sued under state law if they terminate a state-licensed medical marijuana user.
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