There are several new California laws beginning on January 1, 2018. The biggest one taking effect is that recreational marijuana will be legal to buy and sell in California. The regulatory framework is still being worked out in many cities. Los Angeles and San Francisco are among those that won't have their licenses ready by the time marijuana sales become legal on New Year's Day. In the meantime, Angelenos should be able to purchase recreational marijuana in West Hollywood, which has authorized a number of businesses to proceed with recreational marijuana sales. Remember that despite the legalization of recreational marijuana sales it is not legal to smoke marijuana and drive if you are high. As we have discussed previously on our blog, prosecutors are training law enforcement officers to crackdown on drivers who are DUI of marijuana or other drugs.
Other new laws taking effect include:
Senate Bill 65 - Cannabis Use in Vehicles (Vehicle Code Section 23220): This law prohibits smoking or ingesting marijuana or marijuana products while driving or riding as a passenger in a vehicle. This will be an infraction (punishable by a fine). The DMV will also assign negligent operator point counts for this violation, meaning a conviction for this will count as a "moving violation." However, if you are the driver of the vehicle and an officer observes you smoking marijuana you can expect to be arrested on suspicion of DUI as well.
Assembly Bill 2687 - DUI Passenger for Hire (Vehicle Code Section 23152(d)): This law makes it unlawful for a person to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.04 percent or more when a passenger for hire is in the vehicle at the time of the offense. This statute is intended to target Uber, Lyft, and other rideshare drivers. This will mean that drivers of passengers for hire, in their personal vehicles, will be held to a higher standard of safety while transporting people. The legal limit for regular non-commercial drivers is .08. Passenger for hire drivers will now be treated the same as commercial drivers. If you are a rideshare driver and you have a BAC of .04 or greater you can expect to be charged with DUI.
If you are arrested for a DUI involving marijuana you will want an experienced Los Angeles DUI lawyer on your side. Call us at (877) 203-4377 or submit our CONTACT form today. Los Angeles DUI lawyer Robert D. Berglund specializes in defending persons charged with DUI. California DUI laws are not only confusing but carry very harsh consequences. Do not go to court alone without an experienced DUI attorney on your side. A DUI arrest can happen to anyone who smokes marijuana and drives. An arrest does not have to result in a DUI conviction. As we discuss on our Marijuana DUI page, these cases can be tough for prosecutors to prove. CONTACT our office today for a free consultation if you have been arrested for DUI.