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When can you be charged with prescription drug crimes in Florida?

On Behalf of | May 13, 2024 | Drug Crimes

Prescription medications play a vital role in the modern healthcare system, but their misuse can lead to serious legal consequences. In the Sunshine State, where combating prescription drug abuse is a top priority, the laws surrounding these substances are strict.

Understanding when you can be charged with a prescription drug crime is crucial to help avoid legal trouble. By exploring the different scenarios that can trigger prescription drug charges, you can gain a clearer picture of what constitutes a crime in this regard.

Possession without a valid prescription

State law dictates that possessing any prescription drug without a valid prescription issued by a licensed medical professional is illegal. This applies even to small quantities meant for personal use. If you’re found in possession of a small amount of a prescription drug without a prescription, you might face a second-degree misdemeanor. This drug crime is punishable by a fine not exceeding $500.

Possession of a larger quantity of drugs with a high potential for abuse, even without a clear intent to sell, can be charged as a third-degree felony. This carries a potential sentence of up to five years in prison and a fine reaching $5,000.

Sharing or selling prescription drugs

Giving your medication to someone else, even if they claim to have the same medical condition, is illegal. Additionally, distributing or selling prescription drugs, regardless of the amount, is a felony offense.

Obtaining a prescription through fraud

Deception plays a significant role in prescription drug crimes. Florida takes a harsh stance against those who try to obtain controlled substances through fraudulent means. For instance, visiting multiple medical practitioners to obtain multiple prescriptions for the same medical condition is illegal. This can be considered a form of prescription fraud and could result in felony charges.

Additionally, forging a prescription or altering a legitimate one to obtain a controlled substance is a serious offense, typically charged as a third-degree felony. Moreover, providing false information to a doctor about your medical condition to obtain a prescription can also lead to criminal charges.

Understanding the legalities surrounding prescription drugs is crucial. And, navigating the complexities of prescription drug crime charges requires legal guidance. A seasoned legal team can assess your specific situation, help determine the best course of defense and fight for your rights in court if you’re facing charges of this kind.