Marijuana Leaf and Car Keys

Driving High. What Happens if I Get a Marijuana DUI?

The Law Office of Justin K. Hall P.C.  July 5, 2024

Did you know that marijuana-related DUIs have increased by over 50% in states where cannabis is legal?  

Over the past two decades, many states have moved to legalize both medical and recreational marijuana. While it's difficult to pinpoint the exact impact on marijuana consumption levels, this shift raises many questions about the penalties for driving under the influence of cannabis and what to expect if you're arrested for a marijuana DUI. 

If you have recently been charged with a DUI for marijuana, contact The Law Office of Justin K. Hall. I help clients all around in Rockwall, Dallas, Collin, Hunt, and the Kaufman area. I am here to help guide you through the legal processes and challenges you will face.  

As a seasoned trial attorney who has been working on DWI and criminal defense cases for over 20 years, I understand what you’re going through.  

Having a DWI conviction on your record can have serious consequences, which is why I want to do everything I can to defend your case.  

What Is a Marijuana DUI? 

A marijuana DUI involves charges for driving under the influence of cannabis, like traditional DUI charges involving alcohol.

This offense applies to any form of cannabis and any marijuana-based substance. While the core nature of a Marijuana DUI is comparable to other substance-related DUI charges, the legal details and implications can vary.  

Understanding the Effects of Marijuana 

Marijuana can heavily impair an individual’s ability to operate a vehicle safely. The active ingredient in marijuana, THC, affects major cognitive and motor skills necessary for driving. 

When consumed, THC impacts the brain’s ability to process information efficiently. This makes driving under the influence of marijuana a significant safety risk. 

Here are some ways that marijuana can affect you: 

  • Slowed reaction time: Drivers may experience delayed responses to traffic signals or sudden changes on the road. 

  • Altered perception: Distances and speeds may be perceived inaccurately, impacting safe driving decisions. 

  • Impaired judgment: Making quick decisions, necessary for safe driving, becomes challenging. 

  • Decreased coordination: Motor skills required for tasks like steering or braking are reduced. 

Understanding these effects highlights why driving under the influence is taken very seriously by law enforcement and poses substantial risks to both the driver and others on the road.

What Happens if You Get a DUI in Texas? 

In Texas, driving under the influence of marijuana carries substantial penalties, highlighting the state’s firm approach to impaired driving.  

Potential consequences for Marijuana DUI offenses: 

First Offense 

  • Class B Misdemeanor 

  • Jail Time: Up to 180 days in county jail. 

  • Fines: Up to $2,000. 

  • License Suspension: Ranges from 90 days to 1 year. 

  • Community Service: Between 24 to 100 hours. 

  • Probation: Probation may be imposed, requiring participation in drug and alcohol education programs. 

Second Offense 

  • Class A Misdemeanor 

  • Jail Time: 30 days to 1 year in county jail. 

  • Fines: Up to $4,000. 

  • License Suspension: Lasts from 180 days to 2 years. 

  • Community Service: Between 80 to 200 hours. 

  • Probation: Stricter probation terms, potentially including more extensive drug and alcohol education or treatment programs. 

Third Offense 

  • Third-Degree Felony 

  • Prison Time: 2 to 10 years in state prison. 

  • Fines: Can reach up to $10,000. 

  • License Suspension: Ranges from 180 days to 2 years. 

  • Community Service: Between 160 to 600 hours. 

  • Probation: More rigorous probation conditions, which might include intensive supervision and mandatory substance abuse treatment. 

Additional Consequences 

Beyond the direct legal penalties, a marijuana DUI conviction in Texas can lead to several other significant repercussions: 

  • Increased insurance rates: A DUI conviction results in much higher auto insurance premiums. 

  • Criminal record: The conviction will be recorded on your criminal history, potentially impacting job prospects, housing applications, and more. 

  • Ignition Interlock Device (IID): For repeat offenders, courts may mandate the installation of an IID on any vehicle the offender operates. 

  • Educational programs: Completion of DUI education or substance abuse treatment programs may be required as part of probation conditions. 

Texas enforces strict penalties for marijuana DUI offenses to deter impaired driving and enhance safety on the road. Given these consequences, it is highly advisable to have a lawyer when facing DUI or criminal charges to ensure your rights are protected and achieve the best possible outcome for your case.  

Contact The Law Office of Justin K. Hall today to discover how I can assist you in navigating these challenging times and provide you with the highest level of professional support. 

Steps to Take After Your Charge 

If you are charged with a marijuana DUI in Texas, it is imperative to act quickly. You have just 15 days (about 2 weeks) from the date of your charge to request a hearing to contest the suspension of your driver's license. If you do not appeal within this time, the suspension will take effect 40 days (about 1 and a half months) after your arrest. 

For residents of Rockwall, Dallas, and the greater North Texas area, it’s advisable to contact The Law Office of Justin K. Hall. I am dedicated to helping you fight back against DWI and criminal charges, believing that everyone deserves a strong advocate in their corner.  

Contact the Law Office of Justin K. Hall.

At The Law Office of Justin K. Hall, I offer extensive support in DUI and criminal defense, providing knowledgeable representation to navigate the legal system.  

I believe in giving personalized attention to each case, offering tailored legal strategies that recognize you as a valued client with unique needs and concerns. With a proven record of successful outcomes, you can be confident that you are in capable hands. My commitment is to provide strong advocacy, fighting vigorously for your rights and working towards the best possible outcome for your case. From the initial consultation through every stage of your case, I ensure comprehensive legal support, helping you understand your options and the steps involved.  

Contact me today to schedule a consultation and learn how I can help protect your rights and future.