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When is it illegal to possess a prescription drug in Virginia?

When a resident is ill or injured, they often visit the doctor who prescribes a medication to treat their ailment. It is important, though, that people do not share prescription medications with others or possess them without first obtaining a valid prescription. Doing so is not only dangerous for one’s health, but also could be considered a crime.

Under Virginia Code § 18.2-250, one cannot intentionally or knowingly be in possession of a controlled substance, unless he or she has a valid prescription for the controlled substance. Many prescription medications are considered to be controlled substances. For example, one cannot intentionally or knowingly possess Oxycodone, a medication used to treat pain, unless he or she has a prescription for that medication.

Some medications that one must have a valid prescription for are Schedule II Substances. This means that they have a high potential for abuse, they have a currently accepted medical use and the abuse of the medication can cause the abuser to suffer severe psychic or physical dependence. Other medications that require a prescription are classified as lesser Schedule III Substances.

Therefore, it is important for those who are on certain medications to ensure they have a valid prescription. If not, it is possible that they could face prescription drug charges. These crimes can lead to unwanted consequences, including incarceration and hefty fines. Therefore, while some people may think they do not need a doctor to prescribe them a prescription-strength medication or that sharing prescription medication is okay, this is far from the truth. Not only are such acts dangerous to one’s health, but also those in possession of certain medications without a valid prescription.

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