On the 2nd March 2015, the Government introduced a new law dealing with driving under the influence of certain controlled drugs above prescribed limits.
Under the new legislation, it is now an offence to go over the specified limit for each drug whilst driving, in the same way as it is with drink driving.
This new offence works alongside the existing motoring offence of driving whilst impaired through drink or drugs.
Prior to March 2015, it was an offence to drive under the influence of drugs, but the new laws give Police more power to prosecute for drug driving offences. You do not have to be on illegal drugs to commit the offence, many prescription or over-the-counter medicines can also cause you to commit the offence. Drugs covered by the new rules include, as well as prescription offences, the likes of cannabis, cocaine, ecstasy and ketamine.
If you are prosecuted having used over-the-counter or prescribed drugs then you may have a medical defence. Prosecution for drug driving carries hefty penalties which include a 12 month minimum driving ban, up to £5,000 by way of financial penalty and/or a 6 month prison sentence.
If you would like further advice with regards to any charge of drug driving, or if you require legal representation, call now and speak to one of our drug driving solicitors on 0800 046 3066. We are based in the Midlands but offer a nationwide service covering all Magistrates Courts. We are happy to advise you about any possible defence and if appropriate put forward “special reasons” to avoid a disqualification as well.