Is it illegal to drive under the influence of prescription drugs in California? The answer depends upon the effects the drugs would have upon your ability to operate a vehicle. You can face criminal charges for taking a prescription medication and getting behind the wheel.
Get more information about driving under the influence of drugs (DUID) charges with this article. Review types of prescription medications that could result in a DUID charge. You may also consider some defenses to DUID charges in Los Angeles.
Information About DUID Charges in Los Angeles
The state of California takes DUID charges very seriously. Any chemical substance that impairs your ability to safely operate a vehicle could result in a DUID charge. Drivers face DUID charges if they get behind the wheel after taking some:
- Illicit drugs
- Prescription medications
- Over-the-counter medications
Generally, the court uses California Vehicle Code (VEH) §23152(f) to prosecute drivers accused of a DUID. You may end up facing these charges if a police officer stops you because they believe you are driving in a reckless or dangerous way.
Police officers may ask you to perform field sobriety tests after you are stopped. They may also require you to take blood tests to determine if you used an illicit chemical substance. Note that you must comply with blood, urine, or breath tests after you are arrested. Failure to comply with a lawfully ordered test could lead to the suspension of your driver’s license.
DUID Charges and Prescription Medications in California
As we mentioned, you could face DUID charges if you drive after taking a prescription drug. However, not all prescription medications should result in a DUID charge. For example, you shouldn’t face a DUID charge for driving after taking antibiotics. The court focuses on medications that may impact your ability to focus on driving. This may include:
- Sleeping medications
- Prescription pain killers
- Marijuana, even if it’s used for a medical condition
Note that there is no minimum “allowable” amount of drug use before you operate a vehicle. The police might arrest you even if you used a very small amount of prescription medication before getting behind the wheel. Fortunately, you may get help right away in this situation. Just reach out to a Los Angeles DUI lawyer by calling (310) 862-0199.
Results of a DUID Conviction in Los Angeles
All DUI charges in Los Angeles are handled seriously by the court system. You may face a number of serious penalties if you are accused of a DUID. A first-time conviction for a prescription drug-related DUID could lead to:
- High court fines
- Time on DUI probation
- The suspension of your driver’s license
- Time in a county jail
- Orders to attend drug education classes
You should know that DUIDs are priorable offenses in California. This means that a conviction stays on your driving record for a lengthy period of time. You face increased penalties if you are arrested again while a DUI charge is on your record.
We are here to help you if you are accused of a DUID related to the use of prescription drugs. Start working on your defense right now by reaching out to a DUI lawyer in Los Angeles.
Build a Defense for DUID Charges Involving Prescription Medication
You don’t have to just accept a conviction for a DUID charge in Los Angeles. Members of our team are standing by to help with your defense right now. We may work to show that a police officer stopped you without reasonable cause. We may also focus on showing that you were not impaired by medication at the time of your arrest.
Your DUID lawyer may get your charges dismissed in some cases. A lawyer may also focus on reducing your charges to an acceptable level. You may accept a plea bargain from the prosecution to reduce DUID charges in Los Angeles. We’re also standing by to defend you in court. Let us stand up for you in front of a judge and jury. Take control of your future right now.
Review the Legality of Driving Under the Influence of Prescription Drugs
It is illegal to drive under the influence of some prescription drugs in California. You may face criminal charges if you’re accused of a DUID. In this situation, make sure you reach out to a Los Angeles DUI lawyer for help. You may contact a member of our team by calling (310) 862-0199. You may also fill out our online contact form.
We’re ready to discuss your situation today with a free consultation.