Driving Under the Influence of Drugs Attorney

Pennsylvania DUI law does not just apply to drunk drivers. The law also prohibits individuals from operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs. If you are caught driving with illegal drugs in your system, you can be charged with a DUID. However, you can also face DUID charges even if you are under the influence of legally prescribed drugs like Xanax or over-the-counter medication like cough syrup. This is because a person’s ability to operate a motor vehicle can still be affected by legally prescribed drugs. It won’t matter that you were taking the medication to deal with a cold or the flu; you can still be arrested and charged with drugged driving.

Warrington DWI Defense

Kamensky Cohen & Riechelson is a highly respected law firm with more than 40 years of experience handling DUI and DUID cases in Bucks County, including Dublin, Penndel, and Plumstead. Our attorneys are committed to serving the best interests of clients, which is why we will do everything possible to ensure that your rights are protected throughout the legal process. We also understand that your freedom could be at stake in a DUID case, so we will do whatever it takes to beat your charges and keep you out of jail. Call KCR today to speak with a member of our DUI litigation team.

Drugged Driving Law in Pennsylvania

A precise measurement of the drugs in your system might not be necessary for police to arrest you. Anyone who is considered to be incapable of operating a motor vehicle because of the presence of any amount of drugs in their blood can be charged with a DUID.

Blood Tests to Determine the Presence of Drugs

Police will typically rely on blood tests to determine the presence of drugs in a driver’s system. Blood testing is the only reliable way to determine if drugs were in a driver’s bloodstream. The blood test will not just identify illegal drugs like marijuana, cocaine, and heroin; it will also show the presence of prescription drugs.

All drivers in Pennsylvania offer implied consent for blood tests. If you refuse to submit to a blood test when requested to do so by a police officer, you can be charged with Refusal. Worse yet, you may still be charged with a DUID.

Drug Recognition Experts in Bucks County DUID Cases

One of the problems with blood tests is that they only determine whether drugs are present in a person’s bloodstream; they do not determine whether the person was actually impaired. That’s why the observations of a Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) are important. A DRE is a police officer who has been trained to look for signs of drug use and make determinations about whether a person is actually under the influence of drugs. After a driver is arrested for DUID, they are taken to the police station. Once at the station, a DRE will closely observe the driver and evaluate the driver for the presence of drugs in their system. The DRE might also look for signs of drug use, such as injection or needle marks.

DUID Penalties in Pennsylvania

DUID cases are treated similarly to DUI alcohol cases in Pennsylvania. However, the penalties for DUID convictions are often more severe. These penalties are determined by the number of prior offenses.

First DUID Offense:

Second DUID Offense:

  • Jail: 3 months–5 years
  • License Suspension: At least 18 months
  • Fine: $1,500–$10,000
  • Alcohol Highway Safety School (AHSS): Mandatory attendance at alcohol and drug education classes
  • Drug Treatment: Enrollment in drug treatment program
  • Community Service: Up to 150 hours
  • Ignition Interlock Devices: Must be installed on all vehicles for 1 year

Third DUID Offense:

  • Jail: 1–5 years
  • License Suspension: At least 18 months
  • Fine: $2,500–$10,000
  • Community Service: Up to 150 hours
  • Ignition Interlock Devices: Must be installed on all vehicles for 1 year

Contact a Warrington DWI Lawyer

The lawyers at Kamensky Cohen & Riechelson are prepared to fight your DUID charges and help you avoid the most serious penalties associated with drugged driving. You can call us anytime to discuss your legal options, or you can email us to schedule a free consultation at our office in Bensalem, PA.