Businesses fight jobless benefits for workers fired for using medical marijuana

Mar 16, 2014

LANSING – Michigan's leading business group is urging the state appeals court to rule out jobless benefits for people who are fired for using medical marijuana.

The appeals court has cases involving people who sought benefits after being dismissed. Judges in Kent and Ingham counties have ruled in favor of the workers.

Rich Studley of the Michigan Chamber of Commerce says businesses are in a "no-win situation." He says employers would have to ignore marijuana use or else pay higher unemployment taxes if a fired worker collects unemployment aid.

The appeals court hasn't set a date for arguments. The cases involve a forklift driver in Grand Rapids and a hospital employee in Charlotte. They say they shouldn't be denied benefits after losing their jobs for using marijuana in a legal way.