Florida Drugged Driving Explained
A DUI in the State of Florida means that a motorist was driving under the influence. While DUIs are most commonly associated with drunk driving, you can also be charged with this infraction for driving under the influence of a chemical or controlled substance, including illegal drugs or even prescription medication.
What Constitutes a “Drug” in a Drugged Driving Charge?
Every state in the country has laws on the books intended to prevent intoxicated driving and to punish those who operate a vehicle while under the influence. These laws do not extend to only alcohol consumption, but also include prescription and illegal drugs. If a substance has an impairing effect on either the body or one’s reaction time, it can be counted as a drug in a DUI drug case.
Legal Limit for Intoxicants
In order to be charged with a DUI for driving under the influence of alcohol, the State must prove that your blood alcohol content, or BAC, was at or above the legal limit of 0.08%. However, there is no legal limit for the amount of a drug or drugs in your system in order to be charged with a DUI. Even if the only substance in your system is a legally prescribed medication, you could still face this charge if your driving was impaired. Consequences for a DUID include all of those associated with a DUI: potential jail time, fines, community service, loss of your license and a mark on your criminal record.
DUI Drug Defenses
A DUI drug offense is a very serious infraction, but an experienced DUI defense attorney will be able to review your case and mount an effective defense to help minimize any penalties you may be facing. In fact, the State’s responsibility of proving that you were intoxicated behind the wheel is quite difficult in DUID cases as a result of the lack of scientific research on the amount of a drug necessary to cause intoxication and what symptoms must be exhibited to prove that you were indeed under the influence. A qualified defense attorney will be able to use this difficult burden of proof, as well as the details surrounding your case, to your advantage to give you the best chance for a dismissal or reduction of your charge.