According to the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, an employer’s policy of drug testing all employees for prescription drugs that are packaged with warnings about operating machinery may not constitute an improper medical examination or an improper disability inquiry under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Dura Automotive Systems, began testing employees in 2007 at its manufacturing facility for certain substances appearing in both illegal drugs and prescription medications packaged with warnings about operating machinery. Dura used a third-party company called Freedom From Self (FFS) to administer the drug tests.
Dura instructed employees who tested positive to bring their medications to FFS for documentation. Dura then informed these employees that they would be terminated if they continued to use the medications.
The employees who were terminated for failing to discontinue use of medications packaged with warnings about operating machinery brought a lawsuit asserting claims under the ADA.
Case – Bates v. Dura Auto. Sys. Inc., 6th Cir., No. 11-6088 (Aug. 26, 2014).