Does Kohl’s Drug Test? (Warning: Must Read)

Many retail stores conduct thorough background tests on their employees before hiring them, including drug tests, to make sure they do not affect the in-store customer experience.

So if you’re looking to apply for a job at Kohl’s, you may be wondering – does Kohl’s conduct drug tests as part of its background check? Here is what I’ve found out about this!

Does Kohl’s Drug Test?

Some Kohl’s locations may administer pre-employment drug tests for prospective employees to take either a mouth swab or urine-based drug test. Additionally, Kohl’s can also administer on-the-job drug tests if they suspect an employee of taking substances.

If you’d like to learn more about the conditions in which Kohl’s would ask an employee to take a drug test, what type of drug tests Kohl’s conducts, and much more, keep on reading!

Why Would Kohl’s Ask An Employee To Take A Drug Test?

For Kohl’s to request a drug test from a prospective new hire, the candidate has to either show signs of drug use physically or have something in their background check that requires follow-up.

Here are the physical signs that would prompt Kohl’s to ask the employee for a drug test:

  • The smell of alcohol either on the body or on the person’s breath
  • Slurred speech
  • Lack of steadiness while standing or walking
  • Difficulty or inability to complete basic tasks
  • Disorientation or confusion
  • Erratic or unusual behavior

Additionally, if your background check contains a history of drug use or any of the following indications, you may be asked to take a drug test:

  • DUI charges on criminal record
  • Drug use charges
  • Charges for selling drugs

What Type Of Drug Tests Does Kohl’s Conduct?

According to Kohl’s employees, the most common methods used to drug test are the mouth swab test and the urine sample test.

Note that this may vary across stores, with some stores not conducting drug tests at all.

If the Kohl’s store you’re applying to uses the mouth swab test, it will often conduct the test during the interview process on location.

However, if it uses the urine sample test, you will be sent to a drug testing facility to complete the test and report the results.

Does Kohl’s Hire/Keep Employees Who Fail Its Drug Test?

Will Kohl’s Hire/Keep Employees Who Fail Their Drug Test?

There is no official policy on whether or not Kohl’s will keep employees or hire new ones with drug habits, so this largely depends on each individual store manager.

Many store locations will take certain behavioral patterns and details from background checks into account while making their decision.

If an employee/candidate is expected to negatively affect customer experience and satisfaction, the store manager may decide not to keep/hire that person.

How Thorough is Kohl’s Background Check?

Kohl’s conducts a reasonably thorough background check which can often take up to a week to complete, according to the hiring information on

These checks are conducted by First Advantage, a leading global background check company, and applicants are informed about this during the onboarding process.

As part of the check, Kohl’s looks into the individual’s criminal record, taking any charges, arrests, and convictions into account when deciding whether or not to hire the applicant.

Does Kohl’s Hire Employees With A Negative Background Check?

Kohl’s does not always shy away from hiring applicants with a criminal record.

It reviews the nature and circumstances of all criminal activities, the number of convictions, as well as the amount of time that has passed since the last conviction.

If Kohl’s finds its new hire to be redeemed enough to be safely integrated into its work environment, it will hire the person into the store staff team.

Do Employees Have Access to Kohl’s Background Check Data?

Since Kohl’s conducts background checks for employment purposes, the FCRA (the Fair Credit Reporting Act) grants Kohl’s employees certain rights, including:

  • The right to be told if information from their background check is being used against them
  • The right to be informed of what came up in their background check
  • The right to dispute outdated or inaccurate information in the report

Additionally, Kohl’s is also required to get written consent from prospective hires to submit a background check, as it runs the checks through a third-party company.

Note that the FCRA rights may not entirely apply to your situation because of the difference in state laws.

Because of this, it’s important that you do thorough research on your state laws to ensure you are fully aware of what can be brought out and used in your background check.

If you are a Kohl’s employee, you can also read our posts on Kohl’s dress code, best time to shop Kohl’s, and Kohl’s statistics & facts.


Some Kohl’s locations may require prospective hires to take a drug test based on several physical indications (such as erratic or unusual behavior) and criminal records involving drug use or sale.

If a Kohl’s store requires a drug test, the most common methods used by the company are mouth swabs and urine tests. Kohl’s may or may not decide to hire an employee with a positive drug test, depending on their current condition.

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Marques Thomas

Marques Thomas graduated with a MBA in 2011. Since then, Marques has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Marques is also the head writer and founder of

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