Although CBD itself would not test positive for marijuana or marijuana metabolites, if the CBD product used by your employee or applicant contains THC in a high enough concentration, it is possible, depending on usage patterns, that the use of these products could cause a positive urine drug test for marijuana metabolites. Note that if an employee has been using only CBD and not THC, this test may report a false positive for THC. Your managers will need to know how to address situations where an employee defends a positive drug test result by using CBD. If an employee is taking CBD oil or cannabis oil - which often has higher concentrations of THC - under a state's medical marijuana laws, there may be some state law protections for the employee, said Sally Culley, an attorney with Rumberger, Kirk & Caldwell in Orlando, Florida.
The first thing to do when an employee claims that a failed drug test is due solely to CBD use is to confirm the screening test result using a more sensitive method such as GC-MS or RP-HPLC. Similarly, CBD creams, oils and cosmetics containing THC would be less likely to test positive; research on these products may be too limited for an employee to risk their use. Therefore, there is a possibility that an employee may use what they believe to be a legally permitted hemp-derived CBD product, but the unregulated product could test positive for THC. If someone tests positive for THC, they could say that the positive test result was caused by the medical use of marijuana, which can be used in oil form, or by the use of CBD oil, which could also be for medical reasons.
Since the FDA does not regulate CBD products other than Epidiolex, an employee has no guarantee that his or her supposedly pure CBD product does not contain THC. James Berry of WVU Medicine said: "It is possible to test positive for THC if THC is in that particular batch of CBD oil. The best practice for an employee using CBD products is to alert their employer so there are no unexpected consequences down the road." Although there are certain limited exceptions to the law, any employer should think twice before dismissing or otherwise punishing an employee for his or her legal use of hemp-derived CBD products.