A DUI does not only mean driving while drunk. If you drive while under any influence that can impair your motor skills, you can still get a DUI. While Missouri marijuana legislation is still solely for medical purposes, DUI due to marijuana use is still relatively common.

Driving Under the Influence of Drugs: Missouri Marijuana

Motorists need to know more about Missouri traffic violations, especially with DUI tickets.  A DUI not only gets you on record but you also:

  1. Have higher auto insurance premiums,
  2. Gives you traffic points, and
  3.  May lead to the suspension of your driver’s license.

However, unlike DUIs due to alcohol, DUIs due to marijuana may merit more than just a ticket.

Since recreational marijuana is not legal, yet at least, possession of marijuana without prescription can lead to additional charges.

Specifically:

  1. Possession of up to 10 g for the first offense can lead to a fine of $500. A second offense can lead to 1-year incarceration and $2,000.
  2. Sale and distribution of 35g or less can lead to 4 years and/or $10,000 fine.

In November 2018, 66% of votes from Missouri residents favored the use of medical cannabis, legalizing marijuana in Missouri. While Missouri law decriminalizes most of the Marijuana cases,  state law still imposes fines and imprisonment, especially if it is already the second offense.

Recreational use is still under consideration.

The Difference Between DUI due to alcohol and DUI due to Drug Use in Missouri

Both alcohol and marijuana can lead to a DUI and more than traffic points.

However, legally speaking, competent traffic counsel may actually find marijuana DUI cases a bit easier compared to alcohol.

Why? Due to some quirks found in regulations.

In Missouri, DUI cases trigger what we call a BAC (blood alcohol content) exam.

The officers will escort you to the nearest station to get your BAC. If you reach .08%, you get a DUI, .04% if driving a commercial vehicle. For younger than 21, BAC must be less than .02%.

However, Missouri currently does not have a standard for THC or MArijuana levels.

For the motorist, a competent traffic counsel can help minimize or even cancel the DUI as there are no standards yet in place. Since an officer will rely on impairment, the counsel can argue that there are no quantifiable standards yet in place.

The lack of quantifiable standards gives the motorist a lot of leeways legally. While the prosecutor usually construes or understands the lack of quantifiable standard as just the presence of drugs,  your traffic counsel can argue that the prosecutor did not prove that you are unable to operate safely as we cannot put words or numbers if the law does not state so.

If you can successfully argue that either 1) you were not impaired while driving or 2) if granting that you are impaired, but the presence of alcohol or other factors did not reach standards according to law, then you can successfully minimize or cancel your DUI ticket.

If you or someone you know needs help with any traffic concerns in Missouri, contact Traffic Counsel to get a great price and expert insights about speeding tickets, DUI and other traffic issues.