Search Site
Menu
Prescription drug DUI in New York

Drivers in New York state know they can face arrest and prosecution if they drive when taking illegal drugs or with a high blood alcohol content. However, contrary to the belief of many, proving you took a legal, properly prescribed medication may not get you off the hook if the officer believes taking it impaired your ability to drive.

Generally, in a DWI case based on prescription medication, prosecutors need to show you took the medication, and it affected your ability to drive. If you face charges, it is important not to give up just because you know chemical tests show you ingested the drug. Your attorney can discuss with you in deeper detail whether the facts support the allegation that you could not drive safely.

Staying safe

One way to steer clear of a prescription drug DUI stop in the first place is to be careful when you take needed medication. If your meds have a warning label telling you not to operate heavy machinery, this includes driving a car. Likewise, if your doctor or pharmacist mentions a likelihood of side effects that could make driving unsafe, the law will likely hold you responsible for ignoring these warnings.

Common types of drugs that often affect important physical and mental functions include a wide variety of painkillers, sleep medication and certain anti-anxiety drugs. Side effects may include drowsiness, dizziness, blurry vision, lack of focus and delayed physical responses.

Some people also experience rare side effects from medications that may not typically affect driving ability. Some effects can happen due to an interaction with other medications. People taking some medications may also need to avoid alcohol altogether, as even very small amounts can amplify the side effects.

How police officers determine impairment

Initially, police officers determine medication-based impairment based on behavioral cues as well as information you give them. Police officers may receive some training in recognizing impairment, but they are not doctors. They may not have the capacity to state that symptoms they observe, such as shakiness or slow speech, are specifically the result of your consumption of medication. They also use field sobriety tests; however, many people fail those due to other factors, including the presence of the condition they need the meds for in the first place. Chemical testing reveals the presence of the drug but not its effect on driving.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Meet Our Attorneys
  • What to do if pulled over for a DUI


    The ways to effectively handle DWI traffic stops

    Experienced drunk driving defense attorneys in Rochester know the best methods for defending their clients. But your handling of a police stop can make a difference to your defense. The following tips can help...
    READ MORE
Client Reviews
  • "All of my contact was handled very promptly and professionally. They were very knowledgeable and made me feel like my case was as important to them as it was to me."

  • "I highly recommend the Law Office of James L. Riotto. The entire staff is professional, knowledgeable and always willing to help. Mr. Riotto’s legal prowess coupled with his background in law enforcement give him the ability to be empathetic to his client’s circumstances while relentlessly striving for the best possible outcome."

  • "Everyone I’ve talked to in this office has always been kind and very helpful. I’ve used them a couple of times now and am very happy with the outcomes and how well they’ve communicated with me."

  • "I would like to say what an amazing job your office did for me. Your team really saved me and helped me save costs. I want to give a shout out to an amazing person who worked tirelessly for me.. Chelsea Gardner!! She is awesome. James, I tell everyone I know to call you and your team. True professionals and they do what they say!!"

  • "Mr. Riotto was very responsive to us on our initial call as throughout the legal process. It was very clear how he was approaching the case and what the outcome may be. It can be unsettling hiring an attorney we did not know. He very quickly put our minds to rest."

Featured Article
  • The Top Criminal Defense Lawyers in Rochester.

    Handpicked Top 3 Criminal Defense Lawyers in Rochester, New York. Our 50-Point Inspection includes everything from checking reviews, ratings, reputation, history, complaints, satisfaction, trust and cost to the general excellence. You deserve only the best!

    VIEW ARTICLE
Reviews and Ratings
  • lawyers
    5.0/5.0

    Mr. Riotto was professional, responsive and personable. He worked diligently and aggressively on my case that resulted in a very favorable outcome. I would highly recommend his services to anyone who wants first rate representation!

    Read more

    Client

  • google
    5.0/5.0

    Excellent firm. Jim returns calls personally and promptly when needed. Fees are fair and straight forward. Very responsive and helpful and explains everything in plain English.

    Read more

    Mathew Hazan

  • google
    5.0/5.0

    My experience with the Law Office of Mr Riotto could not have been better. His paralegals and other support people were always professional and responsive. They kept me well informed and I could not be happier with the results of his work. If you ...

    Read more

    Robert Gibson

  • lawyers
    5.0/5.0

    All of the staff were very responsive and helpful from start to finish.

    Read more

    Client

  • google
    5.0/5.0

    Mr. Riotto and his team are excellent to work with. They were responsive to my questions, professional, knowledgeable and efficient. I cannot recommend them highly enough.

    Read more

    Bobby Gill

See all reviews
Contact us

Quick Contact Form