Will My Medical Marijuana Use Affect my Personal Injury Case?

Posted By Matthew Clawson || 7-Jul-2017

Colorado was one of the first states in the nation to legalize marijuana for recreational use, and many users in the state rely on marijuana for medicinal uses. It is legal to use marijuana throughout the state, but that doesn’t mean that you are entirely free to use the substance. Marijuana has been shown to impair users’ judgment and reactions and can affect more than just users’ physical abilities. If you are a regular user of medical marijuana, it may affect your personal injury claim as well.

When you file a personal injury claim, the other part will often do everything in their power to avoid paying out the full amount you deserve. One tactic they may use is to argue that your medical marijuana usage made you partially liable for you accident. Even if you were not high at the time, THC can linger for days in your blood stream, and later blood tests can pick up these traces. This argument is also used for prescription medications as well, and can be a way that insurance companies try to discredit you.

Insurers may argue that your medication or medical marijuana use inhibited your judgement, slowed your reflexes, or otherwise impaired you. If you were impaired at the time of our accident, your actions may be seen as contributing to the accident. Your medical marijuana use can be called into question, and it is possible that it may harm your personal injury claim.

Even if you keep your medical use from others, it is possible that the opposing party’s insurance company may comb your medical records for signs of usage. You may have told your doctor that you were a recreational user previously, which can be used to demonstrate that you used marijuana. If you are found to have lied about your use to your doctor, insurance companies will doubt that you were truthful when relating information about your pain and other symptoms to your doctor. They may also look for previous drug-related arrests in your record to further their arguments.

Because of the way that marijuana can remain in the body, it can be difficult to prove the last time you used the substance, but a positive drug test can also cast doubt on your claim. Your attorney can help you argue that you were not impaired at the time of your accident, and may call on expert medical witnesses, testimony from your doctor, or blood tests to demonstrate that you should not be held liable for your accident.

While your lawyer may be able to demonstrate that your usage did not cause your accident, there is nothing they can do if you willfully admit that you were compromised by marijuana or volunteer that you use it. Consult your attorney before discussing your use. It can be difficult to win a personal injury claim as a medical marijuana user, but it is not impossible. With a skilled personal injury lawyer on your side, you can demonstrate that your usage did not contribute to your accident.

If you are a medical marijuana user who has been injured, it may be an uphill battle for you to receive compensation for your injuries. Our team at Clawson & Clawson, LLP, can rely on 120 years of collective experience to fight for you, and help your case be settled successfully. Let our award-winning Colorado Springs personal injury attorneys defend your claim. Contact Clawson & Clawson, LLP today to schedule an initial consultation with our team.

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