If you are like many others, your opiate, opioid and even a heroin addiction may have begun with an injury or illness. You could have been injured at work, or in a car accident, resulting in serious injuries and seemingly never-ending pain. Regardless of the reason, you typically seek medical care for this problem, and your doctor may prescribe you extremely strong and addictive painkillers. Once your condition improves, the prescription you once had ceases. Unfortunately, the dependency you have developed on the medication, doesn’t.
In an effort to maintain a certain quality of life, while avoiding the often-debilitating withdrawal symptoms, you may discuss purchasing unused medication from friends, neighbors or someone else. You begin to purchase the medication you need, often at extremely high prices to help yourself continue functioning. In most cases, this won’t seem like that big of a deal until you are found by the police, in possession of the pills and then find yourself facing criminal charges.
Why Will You Face Criminal Charges for Prescription Drug Abuse?
Prescription medications are regulated by the government. Only licensed medical professionals are able to prescribe and to dispense these types of medications, because of how addictive they can be, the possibility of abuse and the potential of severe side effects. If you receive a prescription for these painkillers, you are only allowed to use the medication as your doctor has instructed. If you do anything else with it, this is considered as abuse according to the law, and this action is illegal.
The bad news is that the abuse of prescription drugs in the U.S. is extremely high. Each day, thousands of people have to seek medical care for the side effects related to the abuse of these prescription medications. Dependence, overdoses and in some cases, organ damage can also occur. Unfortunately, you may also face criminal charges. While this is the case, this is not the best action, as going to jail or facing significant fines isn’t going to help reduce drug abuse.
What to Do if You are Facing Criminal Charges Related to Prescription Drug Use or Abuse
One of the best things you can do if you are facing criminal charges for the possession or use of prescription drugs is to contact a criminal law attorney. In many cases, these lawyers can help get your case diverted to a treatment program, rather than time behind bars, which is what people in these situations really need.
While this isn’t possible for every case, there are situations where it applies and having an attorney is the best way to ensure that this is an option for you. The criminal attorney you hire can review the facts of your case to determine what needs to be done to help reduce the possibility you will go to jail or face serious fines for the criminal charges you are facing. Don’t try to handle these legal situations on your own, as the laws related to prescription drugs can be extremely complex and hard to understand.