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How serious is illegal possession or use of a prescription drug?

Some substances are legal when prescribed by a doctor, but that does not make them legal for everybody. Possession of a prescription drug without a prescription can result in serious penalties and may even be considered a felony. A drug possession charge could have major consequences in your life so here are some important points you should know: 

Never carry or use someone else's prescription drug

You can be charged with illegal possession of prescription drugs regardless of the amount. This means that, if you are carrying a single pill of a prescription drug, you could be charged with a drug crime. Louisiana takes these cases very seriously so you should not risk years of consequences because of one incident.

It is also illegal to use somebody else's drugs. For example, even if your friend has a prescription for Vicodin, it is still illegal for you to use it. You could be charged with a drug crime if a substance is found in your system that you legally should not take. On top of that, prescription drugs can be highly addictive and have unforeseen effects if you have not first consulted a doctor. Never use someone else's medication and do not accept it if it is offered to you.

Penalties depend on the drug and the amount

Louisiana categorizes controlled dangerous substances (CDS) into groups called schedules, according to their addictive properties and potential for abuse. The schedule of a substance determines the severity of the penalties involved. However, even a schedule V drug, which is the lowest classification, can lead to large fines and years in jail.

Prescription drug crimes can also lead to some consequences that you may not have realized. You can lose certain rights, such as the right to vote or carry firearms. You may also have difficulty finding employment in the future, as a criminal mark stays on your record for years.

You can challenge drug charges

Despite the possible consequences, you have every right to challenge a drug charge by seeking an attorney. The manner in which the other side gathered evidence, for example, may not align with police procedures. A criminal charge does not automatically mean you will be found guilty.

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