A number of prescription medications can impair your ability to drive safely, even if you are taking them as they are prescribed to you.
Drugs like opioids and benzodiazepines can cause dizziness, drowsiness, and impair a person’s thinking and judgment. Other medications like stimulants and cough medicine with hydrocodone or codeine can also impair a person’s ability to drive.
Have you been arrested for an OVI that involved prescription medication?
Let’s take a look at how to fight DUI charges for prescription drugs in Ohio.
Is It Illegal to Drive on Prescription Drugs in Ohio?
In the state of Ohio, the charge of driving under the influence (OVI) is defined as operating a vehicle, trackless trolley, or streetcar when under the influence of a drug of abuse or alcohol.
For alcohol, there is a legal limit for how much you can have in your system, which is .08. The only prescription drug, though, that has a specified amount to define what “under the influence” means is amphetamines.
If an individual is operating a vehicle with more than 100 nanograms of amphetamine per mL of whole blood, plasma, or blood serum or 500 nanograms of amphetamine per mL of urine.
When it comes to determining what it means to be under the influence of other prescription drugs, the standard is subject to common law, precedents, and analyses.
If your driving behavior indicates that you are under the influence but you don’t have alcohol in your system, Ohio law enforcement officers have reasonable cause to test your blood for prescription drug use.
How to Fight DUI Charge For Prescription Drugs in Ohio
If the person operating the vehicle has a valid prescription from an authorized medical professional and they were taking the medication as they had been directed, this is a valid, affirmative defense to an OVI.
This means that if you had the metabolite in your system from a previous prescription or if you don’t have your prescription on you at the time of the traffic stop, for example, proof of your prescription and that you were taking as advised can be used as a valid defense.
If this defense isn’t available to you, impairment OVI challenges typically focus on explanations that explain why the arresting officer might think you were impaired. This might mean using a physical disability, mental distress, or nervousness as an explanation for why you seem intoxicated.
Other common defenses include:
- Challenging the grounds of the law enforcement officer to stop your vehicle and obtain a sample of urine or blood
- Challenging the chemical test results
- Arguing that you weren’t impaired when you were operating the vehicle
When you hire an experienced OVI attorney, they will be able to help you determine the best avenue to take after being charged with an OVI for prescription drugs.
Are You Looking For an OVI Attorney?
If you have been arrested for an OVI in Columbus, our experienced OVI lawyers are here to help. Being charged with an OVI can come with very serious consequences, and it is our job to help you minimize or entirely avoid these negative outcomes.
Your best chance to help avoid the severe repercussions of conviction is to speak with an experienced attorney as soon as you can. They can help to fight for your freedom, your rights, and the future of your life.
Are you looking for an OVI attorney? If so, contact us at Tyack Law today.