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Using Marijuana While Driving: What You Should Know About Marijuana DUI Laws

Across history, there have been many monumental moments that changed society forever—the women’s suffrage movement led to the first female Vice President of America. The black civil rights movement allowed African American people to live equally as caucasian Americans, and now the legalization of marijuana permits Montana residents to use it recreationally.


Now that the recreational use of marijuana in Montana has been legalized, everyone can enjoy the benefits of cannabis without worrying about any legal repercussions—or can they? If you’re worried about getting a DUI because of marijuana, keep reading through our guide below.


“Can I Get a DUI Because of Marijuana?”


Yes—you can get arrested for driving high. Just like with alcohol, it is legal to use it, but it is not legal to drive while impaired.


“Can I Drive While Under the Influence of Marijuana?”


Driving under the influence of marijuana is just like driving with alcohol—you can get arrested for a DUI if the concentration of THC in your blood is above a certain limit.


You can drive while under the influence of marijuana as long as your blood levels are below 5 ng/mL of Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, or your driving is not impaired. You can still get a DUI even if your THC level is below 5 ng/mL if there is sufficient evidence of impairment.


“I Got Arrested for a DUI—Now What?”


If you were arrested for a DUI, you need a lawyer who knows your rights and can keep you informed on what you should expect. The penalties for a Montana DUI are as follows:


First Offense


  • Misdemeanor

  • Imprisonment for 24 hours to 6 months

  • The first 24 hours of imprisonment must be served

  • Fine of at least $600 to $1,000

  • Driver’s license suspension


Second Offense


  • Misdemeanor

  • Imprisonment for 7 days to 6 months

  • The first 48 hours of imprisonment must be served consecutively

  • Fine of at least $1,200 to $2,000

  • Driver’s license suspension


Third Offense


  • Misdemeanor

  • Imprisonment for 30 days to 1 year

  • The first 48 hours of imprisonment must be served consecutively

  • Fine of at least $2,500 to $5,000

  • Driver’s license suspension


Fourth Offense


  • Felony

  • Imprisonment for at least 6 months

  • Mandatory treatment at a locked-down facility run by the Department of Corrections

  • At least 1 year of supervised probation

  • Random testing

  • Fine of at least $5,000 to $10,000

  • Driver’s license suspension


Once convicted, Your driver's license could be restricted to necessity-only driving or suspended for up to a year. Depending on your case, you may also have to complete a chemical dependency treatment program.


What evidence can they use against me?


You do have a right to decline a blood test, but the government can obtain a warrant to forcibly draw your blood even if you refuse. If you’re stopped while driving, the officer will probably request that you perform a number of physical tests to determine your impairment. These tests will be recorded on video, and that video could be used against you at trial. You can also refuse to perform these tests, but that refusal will be used against you as well.


It is important to hire an experienced DUI attorney to help you if you have been charged with a marijuana DUI. There are many rights and important legal issues involved. Trying to navigate them on your own, or relying on a lawyer with too many cases or no experience could result in those issues being missed.


Please use marijuana responsibly. If you are caught driving under the influence of THC, hire a lawyer who knows your rights, can fully prepare you for any consequences, and knows how to get you the best possible outcome.


If you were charged with driving under the influence of marijuana in Montana, reach out to our DUI attorney at Roath Law. At Roath Law, we know that being accused of committing a crime is one of the most stressful and confusing events of anyone’s life. We can help you remove the stress of navigating your DUI case. You need someone with experience and knowledge of Montana’s laws, procedures, and who knows the strategies to get you the best possible outcome. Give us a call and get a free consultation today!