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Drugs, Alcohol and Smoking: California

Drugs, Alcohol and Smoking requirements for other states

Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.

Author: XpertHR Editorial Team


  • California employers may refuse to hire or may terminate an employee who, because of current use of alcohol or drugs, is unable to perform their duties or cannot perform the duties in a manner that would not endanger their own or others' health or safety. See Drugs and Alcohol.
  • California prohibits smoking, including the use of e-cigarettes, in enclosed places of employment and enclosed spaces. See Smoking.
  • An employee's off-duty use of tobacco products, cannabis and the lawful consumption of alcohol are protected from discrimination and retaliation. See Off-Duty Conduct.
  • Localities including San Diego and San Francisco have requirements pertaining to employee drug testing and smoking. See Local Requirements.