If you are a medical marijuana patient in Florida, make sure you don’t drive without your state medical marijuana card and under the influence of cannabis while operating a motor vehicle to avoid getting in trouble with the law. On the other hand, drugged driving can lead to a drugged DUI arrest, which can result in a maximum six-month jail sentence, fines of up to $1,000, and driver’s license suspension for up to one year upon conviction.
The following blog post is an overview of medical marijuana laws in Florida:
Can I Get Arrested for Driving with Medical Marijuana in My Car?
If you drive with a cannabis product in your vehicle and get stopped by law enforcement officials, you must show them a valid medical marijuana card. In addition, ensure that the product is in its original packaging and you also carry proof of purchase.
Refusing to show a valid card to the police is a second-degree misdemeanor, which is punishable by a jail term of up to 60 days and a maximum $500 fine. Even if you are charged for failing to produce a state medical marijuana card at the time of the alleged offense, you can still do so either prior to or when you appear in court.
Can I Purchase Medical Marijuana in Florida If I Have an Out-of-State Card?
Medical marijuana cards from other states cannot be used in Florida to purchase legal cannabis products. Visitors should obtain a Florida card with a licensed physician or clinic.
What Should I Do If Stopped by Police?
If you have a cannabis or hemp product—such as CBD oil—in your vehicle and you are stopped by law enforcement officials in Florida, always remain calm. Acting nervous can give an officer a reason to believe you are driving under the influence. Be polite, respond in a coherent manner, and show your medical marijuana card when asked.
Can the Police Determine if a Product is Pot or Hemp?
When Florida legalized hemp in July, law enforcement officials could no longer use current field-testing devices to figure out if a substance is either cannabis or hemp. According to state law, a product containing less than .03 percent THC—which gives users a “high”—is considered hemp, while anything higher is pot.
However, Broward County officers are using a new THC/hemp test kit from Switzerland that can tell if a substance is either marijuana or hemp. Once the substance is confiscated, a sample is sent to a lab before a trial.
On the other hand, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach police don’t use a field test. Instead, they will send a confiscated sample to a lab before filing formal charges.
Can Law Enforcement Officials Search My Vehicle?
If an officer believes you are under the influence of marijuana, he/she can establish probable cause to search a vehicle or make an arrest. Most police departments in Florida use an “odor-plus standard”—which is evidence beyond the smell of cannabis—to find probable cause in order to conduct a search.
Common signs of being under the influence of marijuana include:
- Bloodshot or watery eyes
- Slurred speech
- Delayed reactions
- Irregular driving pattern prior to the traffic stop
Arrested for Drugged DUI in Miami? Let Hubbs Law Firm Help!
If you have been charged with a drugged DUI and you are a medical marijuana patient, our Miami legal team at Hubbs Law Firm can provide you with effective and personalized legal representation in order to help you avoid serious criminal penalties. We can review your case, determine your available legal options, and either reduce the charges you face or get your case dismissed entirely.
For more information about drugged driving in Florida, contact us today at (305) 570-4802 and schedule a free consultation.