While you can be charged with a
DUI if you are caught driving after consuming alcohol or illegal drugs, you
can also be charged while operating a vehicle on prescription medication.
Not only can prescribed pain medicines result in side-effects that result
in impairment, but also over-the-counter medicines as well.
But Prescription Medication is Legal, Right?
People commonly believe that if something is considered as legal, such
as prescribed medicines, then an individual under the influence while
operating a vehicle can avoid criminal charges. However, that is not the
case according to the law.
Think of prescription medication as alcohol. Although consuming alcohol
is technically legal for those 21 years of age or older, operating a vehicle
while under the influence of alcohol is considered illegal. So while the
practice of taking prescribed medicine is fine on its own, combining the
act with driving is not.
Common prescription medication that is known to cause drowsiness, impaired
vision, slurred speech, and impairment include:
- Tylenol PM
A first DUI conviction in California is considered a misdemeanor, punishable
by a maximum jail sentence of six months, fines of $1,000 or more, and
license suspension for up to six months. If you’ve been arrested
or charged with DUI, it is in your best interest to contact an experienced
criminal defense lawyer in your area who can help you decide how best
to proceed with your case.
If you were recently arrested for a DUI in Ventura County,
contact The Law Offices of Robert F. Sommers and schedule a
free consultation today.