Cannabis and Impaired Driving: Drug-impaired driving charges occur when you have been found to be operating heavy machinery while under the influence of drugs, including cannabis. If you have been charged with impaired driving, it is vital that you seek legal counsel as soon as possible. Look for an attorney who specializes in injury law, driving offenses or drug-related charges.
Cannabis and Impaired Driving
Before you consult an attorney, you may want to know more about drug-impaired driving. Learn what it is so that you are better prepared to communicate with your DUI or injury law attorney. You will also be better able to defend yourself when the time comes.
Drug-impaired driving occurs when a driver has taken control of a large vehicle while under the influence of drugs. Cannabis increases the likelihood of being in a car accident. It is also more common to be in an accident while under the influence of cannabis than while under the influence of alcohol.
Police officers can stop any car that they believe is being driven by someone under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Suspicion of impairment due to drugs is ample reason for the police officer to request a sample to detect the amount of drugs in the system. That suspicion of impairment may be due to red eyes, muscle tremors, slurred speech or agitation.
For cannabis, the test looks for tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC for short. Any driver who has more than two nanograms of THC per ml of blood can be charged with drug-impaired driving. Drivers with more than five nanograms of THC face much harsher consequences than those with lower amounts.
impaired driving is taken seriously because it is the leading cause of car-accident related deaths in the country. Cannabis causes drivers to lose focus. It slows their reaction. It impairs motor skills. Drivers under the influence of cannabis have a tendency to lose control of their vehicles and drive at varying speeds, which can cause other drivers on the road to crash.
A driver who is charged with drug-impaired driving will receive a minimum $1000 fine for the first offense. That minimum is mandatory. However, even on a first offense, you can spend as many as 10 years in jail for your crime. If it is your second offense, you can expect to spend at least some time behind bars. The minimum sentence is 30 days while the maximum is 10 years. A third offense will incur up to 10 years in prison as well, but you will serve no less than 120 days if convicted.
These are the least severe consequences of driving while under the influence of cannabis. If you have been in an accident that caused any type of bodily injury, and you cannot prove it was not your fault, you may spend as long as 14 years in prison. If the accident caused a death, you might spend the rest of your life in jail.
Cannabis-impaired driving is a serious issue. You need a serious attorney. Find someone who knows everything there is to know about driving laws, injury laws, and drug laws. It may be difficult at first to find the right attorney, but you do need to act quickly. Look at the website of a lawyer to see how they specialize and how successful they have been in previous cases. Look for testimonials from previous clients. You should also call the attorney and have a consultation before you decide who you will choose to represent you in court. Your attorney is the one person who can help you avoid jail time if you have been in a serious situation. You need to hire someone you can trust to get you through this difficult time.
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