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Tampa Criminal Lawyer > Blog > Drug Crimes > When Are You Immune From Prosecution For Drug Charges?

When Are You Immune From Prosecution For Drug Charges?


Paranoia can be a side effect of some illegal drugs, but given the draconian punishments you can get for possession of even the smallest quantities of most illegal drugs, your fear of every blue light flashing in the distance and every cell phone camera pointed in your direction is quite reasonable.  In many cases, if the police find illegal drugs in your possession, you can face serious legal trouble.  You might get to go to drug court and get the charges dropped if you do not have any prior convictions, but if you pleaded guilty to marijuana possession in the 1990s, before the decriminalization movement really took off, the future after a subsequent drug arrest is much less rosy.  Did you know that there are certain situations where you cannot be prosecuted for drug crimes, even if you answer the policeman’s knock at your door with a crack pipe in your hand?  A Tampa drug crime lawyer can help you if prosecutors are trying to charge you with drug crimes, but the situation where police found evidence of the drugs is protected under Good Samaritan immunity.

Good Samaritan Laws and Seeking Help for an Overdose Victim

Most drug overdoses are survivable if the victim gets medical help on time.  To encourage people to call 911 when someone suffers a drug overdose in their presence, and to discourage them from wasting time by trying to flush their drugs down the toilet before calling for help, Florida and many other states have enacted Good Samaritan laws.  Florida’s version of the Good Samaritan law protects you from prosecution for drug possession or drug paraphernalia charges if you call 911 to get help for someone who is suffering a drug overdose. Even if it is obvious that you are under the influence of drugs, and even if drugs and drug paraphernalia are in plain sight, you will not face charges because of this.  According to the law, the fact that you saved your friend’s life by calling 911 matters more than the fact that you used illegal drugs.

Medical Privacy and Talking to Your Doctor About Your History of Drug Use

Being honest with your doctor about your history of drug use, or even about the fact that, on the way to the hospital, you swallowed an oxycodone pill that had not been prescribed to you, can save your life.  Your doctor needs to know the truth in order to make correct decisions about your treatment.  It is against the law for doctors to notify law enforcement about your drug use.  Medical privacy laws dictate that no one can see your medical records except healthcare professionals who treat you.

Contact Tampa Criminal Defense Attorney Bryant Scriven

A criminal defense lawyer can help you exercise your legal rights, including the right to immunity from being charged for drug possession if you disclosed your drug use in a healthcare context or while cooperating with first responders who were attending to an overdose victim.  Contact Scriven Law in Tampa, Florida to schedule a consultation.



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