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Michael A. Gottlieb, P.A.
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Can I be arrested for a DUI if I take prescription drugs?

You may already be aware of the risks associated with drinking and driving in Florida, but did you know alcohol is just one of many types of substances that can lead to driving impairment? Many street drugs and prescribed medications have side effects that are similar to the effects of inebriation. If you take prescription medications, you are at risk of receiving prescription drug-related DUI charges.

Here is a brief overview of what can occur if you take prescription drugs and drive.

Prescription drugs can lead to intoxication and impairment

Some prescription medications can affect your ability to drive safely by altering your physical and mental abilities. Common drugs that result in impairment include antihistamines, Xanax, Vicodin and some store-bought medicines. When they are mixed with other substances, such as alcohol and narcotics, the effects become more intense.

They can lead to detainment and criminal charges

If you get behind the wheel after taking your medications, an officer may pull you over if your driving behavior causes him or her to become suspicious. The officer may ask you questions and to perform some field sobriety tests so he or she can gauge your level of intoxication. The officer might ask you to take a breathalyzer test. The officer may also request for a drug recognition expert to assess your condition so as to provide a report on the substances he or she believes you are on at the time of the incident. If your actions indicate you are under the influence of a substance, the officer will arrest you and charge you with a DUI.

Even though you may be facing a prescription drug DUI, you should not make light of your situation. To beat a prescription DUI charge, you will need more than a valid prescription from your doctor. DUI charges are not easy to defeat without legal representation. You should speak to an attorney about the situation to receive guidance on the matter.

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