The Illinois Controlled Substances Act outlines how drugs, including prescription drugs, may and may not be handled in the state of Illinois. Read on for a complete guide by criminal attorney Andrew Nickel.
Illinois Controlled Substances Act
In the interest of public health and security, the State of Illinois Controlled Substances Act forbids people from having illegal drugs including heroin, methamphetamines, and other controlled substances. Anyone who is found having a controlled substance without a prescription will face criminal charges. These convictions may lead to expensive fines and even imprisonment.
That said, not all drugs are dealt with equally. Illinois law includes various classifications that are based upon each drug or medication’s capacity for dependency and legitimate medical usage.
The laws regulating controlled substances in IL are complex and subject to change. For instance, marijuana laws in the state of Illinois are currently in the process of changing, so certain controlled substance regulations pertaining to it may not longer apply.
With legal changes like these in mind, it is wise to obtain the counsel of a reputable attorney familiar with the current state laws, such as the Law Offices of Andrew Nickel, LLC.
The Illinois Controlled Substance Act
The Illinois Controlled Substance Act divides drugs into various categories. Most drugs are categorized by how beneficial and how addictive they may be. All in all, the Illinois Controlled Substances Act covers drugs ranging from anabolic steroids to cocaine to synthetic cannabinoids to pseudoephedrine.
Under 720 ILCS 570/203, schedule I or II substances are the most highly addictive and carry the harshest penalties. Drugs that fall under schedule I or II are typically “street drugs.” They usually have a higher capacity for dependency and provide minimal use for medical treatment.
Many people have questions about the controlled substances and what is allowed in the state of Illinois. The IL Controlled Substances Act affects doctors and others who prescribe and dispense drugs, as well as affecting street drug dealers. For anyone with questions, consulting an attorney with experience in drug law is the safest bet.
The 720 ILCS 570 Laws
The ILCS, or Illinois Compiled Statutes, contains all state laws. 720 ILCS 570 is the section of those laws commonly known as the Illinois Controlled Substances Act.
Due to the recognition of the increase of drug abuse along with the damage it causes to the citizens of Illinois, it is the intent of the ILCS 570 Illinois Controlled Substances Act to provide a more comprehensive system of control over these substances. It offers:
- Limited access to only those with a legitimate and lawful reason to have them
- Deterred unlawful and/or destructive abuse of controlled substances
- Defined the uses and significant differences between substances and provided varying degrees of control to correspond to those differences
- Worked toward unifying the State and Federal regulatory systems
- Provided law enforcement with the required resources
Additionally, the Illinois Controlled Substances Act specifies a focus on administering heavy penalties to “illicit traffickers or profiteers”, as the perpetrators of continual abuse.
An attorney experienced with DUI Illinois may be particularly qualified to defend your case if you are uncharged with trafficking controlled substances while under their influence.
Possession Offenses: 720 ILCS 570/402(c)
This section of the ILCS defines possession. According to the text in 720 ILCS 570/402 (c), an individual is guilty of possession if that individual willfully has an illegal substance and knows it to be so. Doctors and pharmaceutical workers in possession of these same substances are safe from prosecution and criminal fines. One who has them with the intent to use them without prescription or to distribute them to others; however, is subject to these laws.
Manufacture Offenses: 720 ILCS 570 401
Subsection 401 of the ILCS explains drug manufacture. Under rule 720 ILCS 570 401, an individual is guilty of manufacture or shipment of an illegal drug if that person purposefully makes, transports, or provides a controlled substance to others. Drug trafficking; likewise, refers primarily to the transport of substances referred to as “street drugs”.
This is a felony. The charges vary based upon the kind of illegal drug or chemical alternative. These charges intensify dramatically based on the amount or type of substance being trafficked.
If you have been arrested for possessing or transporting a controlled substance, you should immediately contact an attorney experienced fighting felonies in Illinois.
Illinois Controlled Substance Prescription Requirements
Because prescription drugs can be abused just like street drugs, IL state laws have specific requirements for managing prescribed medicines. Each person who handles controlled substances in the state must obtain a license from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. This includes pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, and others.
Additionally, any person who prescribes or administers controlled substances, such as a physician or nurse practitioner, must register with the governing agency, the Drug Enforcement Administration.
For the prescriptions themselves, there are other regulations. Each controlled substance prescription dispensed in Illinois requires the following information:
- Patient’s full name and address
- Medication name
- Medication strength and form
- Quantity prescribed
- Directions for use
- Number of allowable refills
- Date the prescription was issued
- Prescriber’s name, address, registration number, and signature
Schedule III and IV medications can’t be refilled more than five times. They also cannot be filled or refilled more than six months past when the prescription was issued. Schedule II controlled substances cannot be refilled at all.
Possession of a Controlled Substance Illinois
Possession of a controlled substance Illinois, such as cannabis, is generally a misdemeanor offense. This offense is punishable by no greater than one year in prison.
Having a conviction can affect your ability to obtain and perhaps even retain employment. If you are charged with possession of marijuana, an Illinois misdemeanor level defense attorney can salvage your reputation.
Ownership of an illegal drug is a felony crime under Illinois law. The charges for which are set out in the Illinois Controlled Substances Act at 720 ILCS 570/1 et seq. The sentence for this charge is one year or more imprisonment. The normal belongings of an illegal drug charge is a Class 4 felony offense.
Possession of Controlled Substance Illinois
A Class 4 felony Possession of Controlled Substance Illinois has a possible sentence of 1-3 years in the Department of Corrections. The fine may be as much as $25,000, and many cases require the accused to undergo drug treatment. Negotiating charges is best accomplished by an attorney familiar with state laws.
Illinois Prescription Laws and the Most Recent Phenomena
One of the issues experienced with Illinois prescription laws regarded the growing rates of opioid usage consumption, overdose, and death. Extreme opioid prescription increases that use. So, as one increases his use, he requires more to obtain the same effect. Therefore, legal opioid prescription amounts may increase over time.
As early as 1961, Illinois prescription laws were enacted that initiated the Illinois Prescription Monitoring Program (ILPMP). Operated by the IL Department of Human Services, ILPMP tracks schedule II to V controlled substances.
For example, because of the ILPMP, we know that between 2008 and 2016, the two most commonly prescribed opioids were hydrocodone and tramadol.
Understanding the Illinois C2 Prescription Laws
Illinois C2 prescription laws regulate the schedule II controlled substances. These are the medications that are the most highly addictive and likely to be abused. This is why they are most strictly regulated.
If you are dealing with criminal charges that fall under the Illinois Controlled Substances Act, then you should contact a knowledgeable lawyer before it is too late.