The Colorado Supreme Court Just Ruled You Can Get Fired For Smoking Pot Even When You’re Not At Work

<a href="http://www.shutterstock.com/pic-121570756/stock-photo-marijuana-and-a-gavel-together-for-many-legal-concepts-on-the-drug.html?src=mVwEVVje5qMKIUXrPIjCQA-1-15">Matthew Benoit</a>/Shutterstock

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The Colorado Supreme Court just ruled that employees can be fired for smoking marijuana even when they aren’t at work, according to the Denver Post.

The 6-0 decision comes nine months after the state’s highest court heard oral arguments in Brandon Coats’ case against Dish Network. Coats, who had a medical marijuana card and consumed pot off-duty to control muscle spasms, was fired in 2010.

Coats challenged Dish and its company policy, claiming that his use was legal under state law. The firing was upheld in both trial court and the Colorado Court of Appeals.

When the case went to the Colorado Supreme Court, legal observers said the case could have significant implications for employers across the state.

They also noted that the ruling could be precedent-setting as Colorado and other states wrangle with adapting laws to a nascent industry that is illegal under federal law.

So here’s the deal: Marijuana is legal in Colorado but it’s illegal under federal law. Even though the DOJ has not prosecuted recreational users, businesses are still allowed to fire people for unlawful behavior.

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Here’s the full ruling:

 

 

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Fact:

In-depth journalism that investigates the powerful takes real money and is so damn important right now.But it doesn’t take a Mother Jones investigation to know that billionaires and corporations will never fund the type of reporting (like they do politicians) we do that exists to help bring about change. Instead, our mission-driven journalism is made possible by people power, and has been for 46 years now since our founding as a non-profit.

In “TITLE TK” Monica Bauerlein writes about the perilous moment we’re in, and why it’s so important that we raise $325,000 by the time November’s midterms are decided so we can be ready to throw everything we have at the big issues facing the nation no matter what happens. Please help MoJo’s people-powered journalism with a donation today.

$400,000 to go!

payment methods

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