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Can You Get a DUI for Taking Prescription Drugs?

When we think about DUI charges, we think of driving while under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs. But can you also be charged with a DUI for driving while on legally prescribed drugs? Our Orange County DUI defense lawyers explain if you can get a DUI for taking prescription drugs.

California DUI Laws Regarding Legal Drugs

Under California state laws, it is a criminal offense to operate a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The statute doesn’t differentiate between legally prescribed medicine and illegal street drugs if they equally impact a person’s driving abilities. This means that even though you may be taking medications legally because a doctor prescribed them or purchased them at a pharmacy, you can still be arrested for a DUI.

What Does It Mean to Be “Under the Influence?”

If the prescription medication affects your ability to operate your vehicle safely, you are driving “under the influence” of drugs. Many prescriptions or over the counter medications have side effects that can affect your ability to operate your vehicle, even after taking the prescribed dosage. Common legal drug side effects may include dizziness, drowsiness, nausea, blurred vision, slow movement, or inability to focus.

If you take a prescription medication and your driving abilities are unsafe to a police officer, they arrest and charge you for driving under the influence of drugs.

Experienced Orange County DUI Defense Attorneys

If you face DUI charges for driving under the influence of drugs, you need an experienced attorney on your side. Our Orange County DUI defense lawyers have years of experience helping people throughout Southern California develop a strong defense against their DUI charges. You only have ten days after a DUI to challenge your charges.

Contact our experienced Orange County DUI defense attorneys today at (949) 537-2202 to schedule a consultation!