Prescription drug fraud, or “doctor shopping,” is defined as the illegal acquisition of prescription drugs for personal use or profit. This excludes theft, burglary, backdoor pharmacies and illegal importation or distribution of prescription drugs. This crime has grown in popularity, which has resulted in law enforcements’ increased efforts to crack down on offenders.
Alleged prescription drug fraud criminals may have faked body pains or medical symptoms, written a fraudulent doctor’s note or visited several different doctor’s offices in order to get a needed prescription. These actions may seem harmless, but their consequences can be detrimental.
Doctors and pharmacists are trained to identify fraudulent prescriptions and report suspicious activity right away. Pharmacists look at various qualitiesto avoid supplying people with prescriptions they don’t need:
- Prescription looks too good; the prescriber's handwriting is too legible
- Quantities, directions or dosages differ from usual medical usage
- Prescription does not comply with the acceptable standard abbreviations or appear to be textbook presentations
- Prescription appears to be photocopied
- Directions written in full, with no abbreviations
- Prescription written in different color inks or written in different handwriting
Penalties for Prescription Drug Fraud
You may be charged with a misdemeanor or felonydepending on the severity of your alleged offense.
- For a first offense: A fine of at least one thousand dollars ($1,000) or community service.
- For a second or subsequent offense: A fine of at least two thousand dollars ($2,000) or community service.
- If you are unable to pay the minimum fines: Community service shall be ordered in lieu of the fine.
We Build Strong Defenses Against Prescription Drug Fraud
Some examples of strategic defense options we can explore include:
- You did not use fraud: Your symptoms were legitimate
- Unwitting possession: You didn’t know the prescription drugs were obtained fraudulently
- Fourth Amendment violation: A police officer unlawfully searched and seized the prescription drugs
- Lack of possession: You did not have actual control over the prescription drugs
- Duress: You were under harm or threat of force when you committed the crime
Contact Our Prescription Drug Fraud Lawyer
Contact our firm to retain top-quality, experienced defense. Our qualified team will keep you informed about everything we are doing to protect your freedom. We will fight for your success and will do whatever it takes to win a favorable outcome.
At the Law Offices of Evan E. Zelig, P.C., our clients are at the forefront of everything we do. Call us at (707) 418-5352 for your free consultation and learn about how we can support you.
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