In 1970, Congress made marijuana a Schedule 1 substance under the Controlled
Substance Act because back then, the government believed that marijuana
had “no accepted medical use.” Now, forty-five years later,
23 U.S. states and the District of Columbia have legalized the medical
use of marijuana.
Marijuana advocates argue that marijuana is a safe and effective treatment
for AIDS, cancer, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s, arthritis, epilepsy,
Lupus, glaucoma, Parkinson’s, and a bunch of other medical conditions.
Medical Marijuana Backed by Research
In 2007, researchers at California Pacific Medical Center reported that
a chemical found in marijuana, cannabidiol, may prevent cancer cells from
In 2010, researchers at Harvard Medical School found that in low doses,
marijuana’s sedative effects may enhance mood and reduce anxiety
– all without the negative side effects of anti-anxiety medications.
These are just two of the numerous studies conducted.
The medical community can no longer ignore the overwhelming evidence that
medical marijuana has many medical uses.
Can you get a DUID with a prescription?
So, what if you have a valid prescription for medical marijuana, can you
still get a
DUID (driving under the influence of drugs) if you test positive for THC in
Let’s examine the facts:
- Patients can legally possess marijuana under Health and Safety Code 113262.5
with a physician’s recommendation for approval.
- Having a physician’s recommendation doesn’t mean you can legally
drive under the influence of marijuana.
Under VC 23152, it’s illegal to drive under the influence of alcohol,
marijuana, or any other drug if it causes impairment; the fact that you took a hit
of marijuana doesn’t necessarily mean that you are impaired.
Take Your Chemical Tests Wisely
Since marijuana can be detected much longer in urine than in blood (several
days as opposed to several hours), it’s better to choose a blood
test vs. a urine test if you haven’t smoked marijuana recently.
On the other hand, if you’re a regular smoker and you smoked pot
recently, it’s safer to choose a urine test. Though you can expect
to test positive, the question remains as to whether you were “under
the influence” at the time of your arrest.
The mere presence of THC in your system doesn’t automatically lead
to a DUID conviction. Instead, the court will look at the totality of
the circumstances and the evidence as a whole, including chemical test
evidence, erratic driving, and field sobriety test results.
This is also how California law treats other medications, including OxyContin
Are you facing DUID charges in Orange County? To protect your constitutional
rights, work with a
Board Certified DUI defense expert – call the
Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc.