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What You Need to Know About Canada's Drug Impaired Driving Laws


 While impaired driving has been illegal in Canada since the early twentieth century, with the legalization of recreational cannabis, it is important for Canadians to understand how the legal system deals with offences related to driving under the influence of drugs. Perhaps more importantly, it is important that they know their rights in relation to these laws.

With a police force eager to prove that they are up to the challenge of policing intoxicated driving offences that don't involve alcohol, it is important for drivers who use recreational drugs to know what powers the police actually have under the new laws. And if you have been charged with drug-related impaired driving, it is important to know what rights and resources you have as a citizen to protect your privacy and defend yourself from spurious charges.

Know the Law

The Cannabis Act outlines three different kinds of offenses related to having prohibited blood drug concentrations within two hours of driving. One of these offenses is summary, and relates to low levels of THC in the bloodstream. The other two offenses deal with higher concentrations or a mix of THC and alcohol. These offenses can be treated as summary or indictable based on other factors such as the seriousness of harm caused.

Knowing the law is important as it can help you ensure that you can avoid impaired driving altogether. But if you are charged with an offense, it is absolutely essential that you make sure you have the legal expertise that can help you navigate the court system. Just because you are charged doesn't mean you will necessarily be convicted, and with the right legal help you may be able to clear your name.

Don't Go It Alone

You have the right to legal counsel, and it is a right you should certainly exercise if you have been charged with impaired driving. The importance of an experienced criminal defense lawyer in helping you negotiate the legal process cannot be overstated, and if you want to ensure that you have a satisfactory outcome in court, you need to make sure you have an experienced lawyer at your side.

At many levels of society, Canada is still adjusting to what the provisions of the Cannabis Act of 2018 really mean for law enforcement, cultivation, and use of marijuana. After years of living under a restrictive set of cannabis laws, Canadian citizens and law enforcement alike are still getting used to what legalization means.

While there is plenty of information available about how police check for cannabis use in drivers, it is also important to remember that should you be charged with a cannabis-related offence, you have recourse to legal resources in helping you fight the charges.

Don't take any chances with your criminal record that could keep you out of jobs and tarnish your reputation for years to come: make sure you engage the legal expertise of firms like Shaffie Law that have a wealth of experience working on drug-related offenses. 

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