DUI With Prescription Drugs

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DUI with Prescription Drugs in Las Vegas

Can You Get A DUI with Prescription Drugs?

Drivers taking prescription drugs known to cause side effects that lead to impaired driving can be arrested for DUI with prescription drugs in Nevada. That’s true even if you have a legitimate reason for taking the drugs and a prescription.

Penalties for DUI with prescription drugs are the same as alcohol-induced DUI charges. They include jail time, fines, mandatory classes, suspended licenses, and more.

Depending on the circumstances of your case, it could be possible for your Las Vegas DUI lawyer to have your DUI charges reduced to a lesser offense or even dismissed.

If you’ve been arrested for DUI with prescription drugs in Nevada, you can rest assured that you’re not alone. We’re here to help. Contact The Vegas Lawyers or give us a  call at (702) 707- 7000 to schedule your free initial consultation today.

Nevada Laws For Driving Under The Influence of Prescription Drugs

Nevada DUI laws stipulate that a driver must not operate a motor vehicle on public roads if they are under the influence of certain substances, even if prescribed.

According to NRS 484C.110, “It’s unlawful for any person who is under the influence of a controlled substance to drive or be in actual physical control of a vehicle…”

Countless prescription medications can potentially cause a driver to be “under the influence.” The most common medicines fitting into this category can include:

  • Pain killers (i.e., Oxycontin, Percocet, Hydrocodone, Morphine Demerol, etc.)
  • Antidepressants such as Celexa, Prozac, and Effexor
  • Sedative-depressants like Ambien, Lunesta, and Sonata
  • Anti-anxiety medications like Xanax or Valium

Though the medications mentioned above can be prescribed, they can still lead to a DUI with prescription drugs charge if they have an unlawful effect on you while driving.

How is a DUI With Prescription Drugs Determined?

Upon making the initial stop, the police will ask a series of questions as well as observe to determine if they should open an active DUI investigation. They may request drivers suspected of DUI to take a blood or breath test.

If the driver has a BAC lower than 0.08, but the police still suspect they are driving under the influence of drugs based on observations and other evidence, they may place the driver under arrest. Then take them to the police station for a DUI blood test to determine the chemicals in their system.

If the police suspect you of driving under the influence of prescription drugs, they’ll require you to take a DUI blood test since breath tests can’t accurately detect prescribed drugs.

It’s important to note that if you refuse the test, the police can seek a warrant for a forcible blood draw, in addition to many other penalties under Nevada’s implied consent laws.

Penalties for Prescription DUI Convictions

If you’re convicted of a first DUI with prescription drugs, you will face the following penalties.

  • 48-hours to 6 months in jail or community service in lieu of jail
  • Mandatory attendance of Nevada DUI school and Victim Impact Panel
  • $400 – $1,000 in fines
  • 185-day suspension of driving privileges 

In many first-time cases, judges will suspend jail time sentences so long as the defendant stays out of trouble during their probation.

However, judicial leniency is not always guaranteed. It’s recommended to seek the legal counsel of a Las Vegas DUI lawyer with an excellent reputation to increase the likelihood of a dismissal, decreased charges, or reduced penalties.

Potential Defenses

Potential defenses to DUI with prescription drugs charges include:

  • No probable cause for the traffic stop
  • Faulty blood concentration testing equipment
  • Procedural errors committed by the police
  • Mishandled blood samples
  • The prescription drugs were not taken until after the driver stopped operating the vehicle

It’s important to note that claiming a lack of knowledge about the effects of prescription drugs is not an affirmative defense to the charge.

Contact The Vegas Lawyers Today – We Can Help

If you’ve been charged with a DUI with prescription drugs offense, there are potential defenses available that can help you to receive the least amount of penalties possible under the circumstance. It’s best to hire a Nevada DUI lawyer as soon as possible after your arrest.

702-707-7000

Don’t gamble with your future when you don’t have to. Our skilled Nevada DUI attorneys and paralegals at The Vegas Lawyers are here to help.

We serve both tourists and residents in Las Vegas and the southern Nevada area. Contact us through this website or give us a call at (702) 707-7000 for your free initial consultation today.

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