Guiding And Defending
You Through Life’s Toughest Moments

Avoiding legal problems when handling prescription drugs

On Behalf of | Nov 27, 2023 | Criminal Law

If you are one of many people who take prescription medicine, you should not fear that law enforcement will be suspicious of you or even arrest you for a drug crime. Since some laws address misuse of prescription drugs, knowing about them should help you avoid an unnecessary criminal charge.

With the help of the following guidelines, you stand a good chance of navigating state drug laws without incurring a problem.

Obtain prescription legally

Always acquire your prescription drugs through legal means. A licensed healthcare professional, such as a doctor or nurse practitioner, should assess your condition and prescribe the appropriate medication. Using the prescription of another person or receiving drugs from illicit sources can lead to serious legal consequences.

Carry prescription documentation

If you carry prescription medication, have the proper documentation on hand. A written prescription should conform to state laws, including featuring text rendered in ink, printed or individually typed. The prescription must also have the name, address and telephone number of the individual who prescribed the medicine. Other requirements may apply.

Keep a copy of your prescription with you. If you ever encounter law enforcement or need to prove the legality of your medication, you can present this information and possibly avoid an arrest.

Be mindful of driving restrictions

Certain prescription medications can impact your ability to drive safely. In Virginia, driving under the influence of prescription drugs can result in legal consequences similar to a DUI that involves alcohol or illegal substances. Study the potential side effects of your medication and avoid driving if they impair your ability to operate a vehicle.

Dispose of medications properly

When you no longer need a prescription medication, do not simply discard it in the trash or outdoors. Virginia has specific guidelines for the proper disposal of prescription drugs. Follow these standards so you may prevent accidental ingestion and comply with the law.

According to the CDC, almost seven million Americans older than 12 years old had reported misuse of prescription drugs in a month alone. So you can expect law enforcement to carefully watch for potential abusers. By adhering to sound guidelines, you may minimize the risk of legal complications.