If you have been arrested for driving under the influence of cannabis in Illinois, you need to contact an Illinois cannabis DUI attorney as soon as possible. In fact, our offices have received calls from possible clients while the police officer approached their vehicle about a possible DUI arrest. A knowledgeable and experienced lawyer in this field can help protect your rights and ensure that your case progresses properly through the legal system.
A cannabis DUI lawyer can provide experienced and informed legal guidance that covers all aspects of a cannabis DUI. From evaluating the evidence against you about the physical control you had over the vehicle to negotiating with prosecutors to get the offense down to a class a misdemeanor, or even statutory summary suspension of your license, an experienced attorney will understand how to navigate these complexities.
They can review any statements or evidence you provided during your arrest and assess whether or not it could be used against you in court. They’ll also know what evidence is needed to prove effective defense strategies, such as whether certain tests were taken within a certain time period after your arrest.
Your Illinois cannabis DUI lawyer will also be able to explain the potential consequences for those convicted of driving under the influence of marijuana. For first time offenders, penalties may include fines, license suspension and possible jail time. Additionally, multiple offenses often result in increased punishments and additional charges. An experienced attorney will be able to negotiate more lenient sentences on your behalf by presenting mitigating factors that show that you are unlikely to repeat the same offense again in the future.
Furthermore, a good cannabis DUI lawyer can inform you about relevant state laws regarding possession and use of marijuana for medical purposes. An experienced attorney can explain how this law applies in your specific case and determine if any related defenses could be pursued on your behalf.
Cannabis Use and DUI Laws in Illinois
Many people think that having one alcoholic drink too many will result in an arrest for DUI. However, this isn’t always true because officers must conduct field sobriety tests and other assessments to determine whether someone should be arrested based on impaired behavior and/or physical coordination.
The same holds true for marijuana-related DUIs—although it has been decriminalized in some form, it remains illegal to operate a vehicle while impaired by marijuana or THC products, such as edibles or oils.
In Illinois, you may be charged with driving under the influence of marijuana under two different instances:
- A person who is authorized to use marijuana medically, for instance, under Illinois’ Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act, must be impaired to a degree they are not able to operate a motor vehicle safely.
- It’s illegal to drive with a significant amount of THC in your bloodstream or other bodily substances while being under its influence. Any concentration above five nanograms per millilitre within two hours of driving is prohibited and carries certain consequences if caught. A nanogram, which is simply an indicator for amounts found in the body, must not exceed 10 units or else legal action may be taken against drivers who are deemed unfit behind the wheel.
The Role of an Experienced Cannabis DUI Lawyer
Navigating the complexities of this type of case requires an experienced Illinois cannabis DUI lawyer who understands how to defend clients facing criminal charges related to cannabis use while driving. An experienced lawyer can help defendants understand their rights and develop strategies that could lead to reduced penalties or dropped charges altogether based on their individual cases if the facts support dismissal.
Furthermore, an experienced Illinois cannabis DUI lawyer will make sure defendants understand their options so they can make informed decisions about their cases moving forward—which ultimately might mean avoiding jail time or harsh sentences entirely.
Hemp Laws Have Changed Cannabis DUIs
Hemp, which is a form of cannabis sativa, is not the same as marijuana and should not be confused with it. CBD Hemp has a much lower concentration of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) than marijuana and therefore does not produce psychoactive effects.
While hemp may look similar to marijuana, its chemical makeup is very different and therefore it can cause confusion for law enforcement officers who may not always be able to differentiate the two when they come across them. Chemical testing for THC also poses challenges that an experienced criminal lawyer can bring to your DUI case.
Additionally, hemp laws have changed recently with the 2018 Farm Bill, which now allows for hemp production in all 50 states for research purposes. However, this can lead to issues with law enforcement as some states have yet to update their laws surrounding cannabis use while operating motor vehicles. This could lead to individuals being charged with DUIs when they are actually driving under the influence of hemp rather than marijuana.
The issue here is that hemp and marijuana are both classified as Schedule I drugs under federal law. Many states have banned the substance or only legalized low levels of its possession. Urine or blood tests are often used to detect any type of cannabinoid in an individual’s system regardless of if it is from hemp or marijuana.
This means that even though individuals may legally possess and consume hemp products in their state, they could still be charged with a DUI if law enforcement finds THC in their system. But the tests are for cannabinoid metabolites that qualify as hemp and not the outlawed Delta-9 THC that is the dividing line between marijuana and legal hemp.
Those facing criminal charges related to cannabis use while driving will likely need an experienced attorney who understands how to defend clients facing these types of charges.
Help From Experienced Attorneys for Your Cannabis DUI
If you are facing cannabis-related DUI charges in Illinois, it is important to know that this offense carries serious penalties including jail time and hefty fines. Don’t go through this alone – the experienced attorneys at our law firm are here to help you every step of the way.
For individuals who have been charged with driving under the influence of marijuana in Illinois, having a qualified lawyer on their side is essential for achieving positive outcomes or reduced charges. An experienced cannabis DUI attorney will understand how to evaluate evidence in order to build successful defense strategies while providing sound counsel throughout every step of your legal process.
Contact us today for a free consultation with an Illinois cannabis DUI lawyer in Cook County or Peoria about your case so you can better understand what options are available for defending yourself against these serious charges. Together, we can build a strong defense.