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Legalization of Recreational Marijuana and Its Effects on Driving in Los Angeles

On January 1, 2018, recreational marijuana becomes legal. That means that you do not need a prescription to purchase it, nor will it be against the law. However, that does not mean that there are no restrictions on it’s use. Marijuana will be restricted just like any other similar substance, such as cigarettes and alcohol.

One such restriction is use while driving. Like alcohol, you cannot be under the influence of marijuana while operating a vehicle. California Vehicle Codes §20002 and 20003 make it unlawful to operate a vehicle while driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. Marijuana, whether legal or not, falls under this category.

However, unlike alcohol, the influence of marijuana is more difficult to provide when stopped for suspicion of driving under the influence. In cases where there is suspicion of alcohol intoxication, an office may request that a driver submit to a blood alcohol test. The alcohol test may be taken through blood, breath or urine and gives an immediate measurement of the amount of alcohol that is in your blood stream at that moment in time. Alcohol will only remain in your blood stream for a minimal amount of time.

In the case of marijuana, there is no specific test that can detect accurately the amount of marijuana you have ingested and whether that marijuana has an effect on you at that current point in time. Marijuana remains in your system a much longer time, and may even be in your system for 24 hours. This creates the problem of determining whether you were actually under the influence at the time you were driving.

Due to the fact that there is no accurate test to pinpoint your impairment if you are under the influence of marijuana alone, there is a lot of room for argument and evidence. An experienced Los Angeles DUI Lawyer has over thirty years of experience and understand the best arguments to make, especially in cases of marijuana use alone.

Prosecutors already have a hard time building a case where there is marijuana use alone, with the help of a knowledgeable attorney, it can make the case even weaker as the attorney can gather the proper evidence and make the proper arguments to create enough doubts for a dismissal or reduction of the case.

If you find yourself in a situation where you have been arrested for driving under the influence of marijuana, be sure to seek the counsel of a legal professional. Your case has a chance of being dismissed or reduced due to a lack of evidence. This can be very important to your future, as it can permanently affect your record. Do not take any chances with your future. Speak to the professionals at Hoffman and Associates as soon as possible, so that they can get started on your case as soon as possible. Taking steps early on can help mitigate your case and can help ease the stress and hassle on you!