Kentucky Drug Testing and Workers’ Comp Laws

Kentucky Workers' Compensation Laws and Regulations of this State
Kentucky Workers’ Compensation Laws and Regulations

Official Kentucky Website

KENTUCKY State Law Summary – Workplace Drug/Alcohol Testing

[Editor:  The information below consists of highlights and is not intended to be all-inclusive.]

 GENERAL COMMENTS: This is a “HYBRID” state, meaning some employers are required to test certain workers – e.g. MINERS and a general VOLUNTARY drug-free workplace discount program (5%) is available for employers. Otherwise, this is an open state with no rules limiting/permitting drug testing in the workplace. 

POLICY: NO law requires a written policy, except in MINING businesses or those who volunteer for the work comp discount program; however, for workers compensation/unemployment purposes employers should have written policy.

NOTICE: NO notice or posting requirements unless voluntarily complying for the work comp discount. (If volunteering for discount must give copy of policy to each employee and post notice of program in “prominent” place at each worksite). 

COSTS: Not specified except mining employers must reimburse the cost of tests to qualified certified applicants.

CONSEQUENCES: NO limits exist under state law or court decision. Mine workers testing positive/refusing to test MUST be reported by the end of business and are disqualified until reinstated by the Office of Mine Safety and Licensing. No specified consequences required for those in the Voluntary work comp credit program.

WHO: NO limits exist under state law or court decision. Mining/Voluntary credit participants MUST conduct drug/alcohol testing.

WHAT: NO limits exist under state law or court decision. Mine operators/Voluntary credit participants must test for 11 drugs and alcohol. 

WHERE: NO limits exist under state law or court decision. Mine operators/Voluntary work comp credit participants must test per SAMHSA rules.

WHEN: NO limits exist under state law or court decision. Voluntary work comp credit participants MUST test as follows: (NOTE: No random alcohol)

“(a) For urine drug testing:

  1. After conditional offer of employment;
  2. After being selected using a statistically valid, unannounced random method;
  3. Upon reasonable suspicion of prohibited drug use;
  4. At follow-up testing at least once per quarter for one (1) year after the employee’s successful completion of an employee assistance program for drug-related problems, or a drug rehabilitation program, or as recommended by the person administering the drug rehabilitation program; and
  5. Following an accident on the premises of the employer or in the course of employment for the employer which requires off-site medical attention be given to a person.

(b) For breath alcohol testing:

  1. After conditional offer of employment;
  2. Upon reasonable suspicion of prohibited alcohol use;
  3. Following an accident on the premises of the employer or in the course of employment for the employer which requires off-site medical attention be given to a person; and
  4. Follow-up testing at least once per quarter for one (1) year after the employee’s successful completion of an employee assistance program for alcohol-related problems, or an alcohol rehabilitation program, or as recommended by the person administering the alcohol rehabilitation program.”

HOW: NO limits exist under state law or court decision. Mine operators/Voluntary work comp credit participants must use/follow SAMHSA guidelines but can use saliva tests.

Education: For the Mining industry and those who voluntarily participate in the work comp credit program, initial and annual education programs are required.

OTHER STATEPECULIARITIES:

  • In mining, 0.04 is alcohol positive.
  • At least 5% workers comp premium credit exists for mining operation with qualified Drug Free workplace including and EAP.

  • For work comp discount program, a copy of Company Policy must be filed with the KY Office of Workers Claims, Dept. of Labor. 

  • Voluntary work comp credit participants must have an EAP.

Updated 11/17/11

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