Understanding the Impact of Minnesota’s New Marijuana Law on DWI Cases

by Derek Thooft

With the legalization of adult-use cannabis in Minnesota taking effect on August 1st, significant changes are being implemented, particularly regarding motor vehicle use. According to the new law, it is illegal in Minnesota to operate, drive, or be in physical control of any motor vehicle while under the influence of various substances. These include cannabis flower, cannabis products, lower-potency hemp edibles, hemp-derived consumer products, artificially derived cannabinoids, tetrahydrocannabinols, or any intoxicating substance that can cause impairments. Engaging in any of these activities constitutes a violation of the state’s DWI laws. In addition, in cases where there is probable cause to suspect impairment due to an intoxicating substance or any of the mentioned cannabis-related items, authorities may require a blood or urine test. These tests aim to determine the presence of impairing substances that are not detectable through breath tests, such as alcohol.

Future Plans for Intoxicating Substance Testing:

Starting on September 1st, 2023, until August 31st, 2024, the commissioner of public safety will initiate a pilot project. This project will focus on designing, planning, and implementing oral fluid roadside testing instruments. The purpose of this plan is to study and determine the effectiveness of these instruments in identifying the presence of controlled or intoxicating substances, increasing the protection of individuals against impaired drivers.

Seek Professional Guidance at Thooft Law:

At Thooft Law, we understand that facing legal matters related to DWI cases can be stressful and personal. Our dedicated team is here to provide guidance throughout this process. With our experience in assisting clients across various situations, we are well-equipped to support you. To learn more about our services, please call us or email us at ThooftLaw@gmail.com. You can also visit our Facebook page, Thooft Law, LLC.