Connecticut Drug DUI FAQs


Is There Such Thing as a CBD DUI?

You can’t necessarily be convicted of a DUI for using CBD, but you can be arrested and charged with a DUI if a test shows that you have metabolites of CBD in your system. It’s the responsibility of your defense lawyer to educate the prosecutor as to why those metabolites cannot prove impairment. 

Can I Get a DUI For Prescription Drug Use?

Yes. Just because a medication is prescribed to you does not mean that you can drive under the influence of it. In Connecticut, if any legal or illegal drug impairs your driving, you are driving under the influence and could face a charge and a conviction.

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Can I Get a DUI If I Have a Medical Marijuana Card?

Yes you can. Remember that marijuana is now legal in Connecticut – even recreational marijuana. The question is not whether or not you can legally consume the substance. The question is if it impairs your driving or not. You should be sure that if you consume marijuana, you do not get behind the wheel. A medical card will not prevent a DUI charge or conviction. 

Is Smelling Marijuana Probable Cause For a DUI?

Up until recently, a police officer noticing the smell of marijuana would be probable cause for a DUI. Now it needs to be the smell of burned marijuana and there will be some other indicator of you being under the influence in order for a police officer to make an arrest. And it’s very easy for the police officer to find additional reasons for probable cause, such as a driver going over the yellow line or driving too slow. It’s very easy for a police officer to create this situation that causes probable cause to exist. 

What If I’m Not High But Marijuana is in My System?

If you smoke marijuana regularly, be it recreationally or medically, you will build up marijuana metabolites in your system and they can be there for up to 30 days or more for chronic users. One of the most important things that we can do as defense attorneys is show that these metabolites have been in your system and will continue to be in your system for a long time, but that you were not high at the time that you operated a motor vehicle.

Can I Get a Drug DUI If I Wasn’t High?

In Connecticut, you cannot be charged or convicted of a drug DUI if you were not driving high. The problem is that it is very difficult to determine if you are high while driving because marijuana can stay in your system for a long time. This could mean that you consumed marijuana three days ago and were high at that time, but were not high while you were driving. Regardless, the remnants could still be in your urine or your blood, and that is what can be used to convict you of a Connecticut drug DUI. Our system for testing for drugs cannot pinpoint the exact time that you were high. If the drugs are in your system, the police can arrest you and you could ultimately be convicted. You should consult with a lawyer to determine the best defense in this situation. Your lawyer should work to prove that even if metabolites were in your system, you were not high at the time that you were driving.

There is absolutely no legal limit for marijuana consumption in Connecticut. You can inject or smoke as much marijuana as you would like. There is no hard and fast rule that this level of marijuana means you cannot control a motor vehicle. Other states outside of Connecticut use metabolic levels, which means that if a certain amount of the metabolite of THC is in your system, you are automatically guilty of driving under the influence. Connecticut hasn’t gotten that far yet. We are an impairment state and our prosecutors must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were impaired in your ability to operate a motor vehicle by the THC. They can’t just suspect you and say a level makes you guilty. In Connecticut, that’s just the starting point. 

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