Why Michigan employers don’t have to pay for medical marijuana and how change can happen.
The issue of marijuana legalization is getting more attention these days. Michigan voters approved its medical use in 2008 and many cities have even started decimalizing recreational use.
Marijuana is a controversial issue and many people oppose its legalization. Others believe it is essential to treat individuals with specific medical conditions.
There was some initial discussion in 2008 about whether an employer had to pay for medical marijuana under workers compensation. This debate was ended with the passage of Senate Bill 933 (2012) exempting employers from having to reimburse charges for medical marijuana treatment.
Fighting an uphill battle
Workers compensation must pay for all reasonable and necessary medical treatment. This includes doctor visits, hospitalizations, surgery, physical therapy, prosthetics, and prescription medications. Experimental procedures or drugs are typically not covered.
The US government has classified marijuana as a schedule 1 drug with no accepted medical use. It is a violation of federal law to prescribe, purchase, or distribute. Marijuana is not FDA-approved to treat any medical conditions or diseases.
Even if Michigan law was changed, it is doubtful that a magistrate would order reimbursement. These issues are currently being litigated in other states.
If an employer is not responsible for payment of medical marijuana under workers compensation, does this mean the treatment is invalid? We suggest contacting your elected representatives if you want to see change happen.
Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation today.
Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by tharms5.