Can I get a DUI in Arizona if I smoked Marijuana and have a prescription?

by Aaron Black • January 21, 2012
In Arizona, a Drug (Marijuana) DUI has 2 charges. You will be charged for:
  • Driving under the influence of a drug. ARS 28-1381A1, and
  • Driving while there is any drug defined in section 13-3401 or its metabolite in your system. ARS 28-1381A3.
If you have a prescription for the drug, whether it is Marijuana or Xanax, it is an absolute defense to the A3 charge. However, you can still be tried and convicted on being impaired to the slightest degree, A1 charge. This is why you never do the field sobriety tests and always ask for a lawyer. Read my post, What to do if I get pulled over for a DUI.

Because you can get a DUI with just the metabolite, that means you do not have to be high. You could have smoked the marijuana 2 weeks ago and still get a DUI. Always invoke your 5th amendment right to remain silent, and never tell the officer you smoked marijuana - even if it was weeks prior.

Medical Marijuana

On November 2, 2010, Arizona passed the Medical Marijuana Act otherwise known as Proposition 203. Prop 203 allows those with terminal and serious injuries that include conditions such as cachexia or wasting, and chronic pain to legally use medical marijuana, protecting them from arrest and prosecution with a Medical Marijuana Program ID. The proposition, however, does come with restrictions.

Examples of Medical Marijuana use allowable by Law

  • A qualifying patient can possess up to 2.5 ounces (as recommended by their physician.)
  • In some instances, a patient may be able to cultivate marijuana. A qualifying patient, however, must be authorized to grow marijuana, and their identification card must verify that they are eligible.

Examples of Medical Marijuana Restrictions

  • Being in control of a motorized vehicle while under the influence of medical marijuana including a car, aircraft or motorboat.
  • Possession or use of marijuana in a child care facility is prohibited
  • Possession or under the influence of medical marijuana on federal groundsThere are defenses to the A1 charge
  • Officer did the field sobriety tests wrong
  • Blood not collected
  • Physical disability
  • Therapeutic amount of the drug
If you have been arrested for DUI and Marijuana of a drug was found in your system contact Phoenix DUI Lawyer Aaron Black for a free consultation. 480-729-1683

In light of the Coronavirus pandemic, I wanted to inform clients and potential clients I am still available for consultations. I am always available by phone, text and/or email. We can also use Facetime for social distancing. The criminal justice system is not stopping due to COVID-19.

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