It is illegal to sell prescription medication. Even if you go to the doctor and get a prescription, and you then have that legally fulfilled at the pharmacy, it doesn’t mean that you are allowed to sell that medication to anyone else.
People sometimes do this innocently, thinking that they simply didn’t need all of their pain pills, for example, and that they might as well make a little money by selling the extras to someone else. But this is illegal and could result in drug distribution charges.
That being said, sharing medications seems much different. For instance, maybe you just know someone who has the same condition that you do. Perhaps you have an anxiety disorder and you’re taking Xanax. It really helps you, so when a family member or a friend who also has anxiety asks if they can have some of the pills, you think nothing of sharing the medication. You’re just trying to help. But could this still get you in trouble?
Sharing is still illegal
The reality is quite simple: sharing prescriptions is illegal, just like selling them. The illegality doesn’t lie in getting financial compensation for the medication, but in giving that medication to someone who doesn’t have the right prescription. If this is done, even when money doesn’t change hands, it’s a violation of controlled substance laws.
Why is the law set up this way?
In the hypothetical example above, it’s easy to see why you may mistakenly think that it isn’t a problem to share the medicine. You have good intentions.
But the reality is that a lot of prescription medications change hands because people are addicted to them. This can lead to misuse disorders and overdoses. In order to combat this, the government has made it very clear that only someone who has the prescription can use that controlled substance as intended and instructed by their doctor. Any violation of this could be a violation of both local and federal drug laws.
Of course, you may find yourself facing these types of criminal accusations when you didn’t realize you were breaking the law. If so, it is crucial that you understand the potential ramifications and all of the legal defense options at your disposal.