Defending a Drug Charge

Drug offenses are severe. The consequences can be as minor as fines or as severe as extended jail time. The threat of any consequences can provide service members and their families with stress and anxiety. Our military criminal defense team works with you to resolve your issue and alleviate that stress.

Federal law can charge service members for drug violations that involve possessing, using, manufacturing, trafficking, selling, or distributing an illegal or controlled substance. Our attorneys can help you with your drug offenses by providing committed and knowledgeable counsel.

Drug Tests and Urinalysis

To ensure that military members are not under the influence of any controlled substances or illicit drugs, the Department of Defense (DOD) requires that military members undergo a urine test on a regular basis. For members of active duty, this requires that they submit to a random urinalysis at least once every year; for those who are members of either the Guard or the Reserves, the test can be done at intervals as long as every two years. This means the DOD can have more than 60,000 urine samples coming through their doors on a monthly basis. 

Drug Test Process

Several safeguards are in place to ensure that the test is completed as accurately as possible. For example, it is legally required that the process of giving the sample be overseen—meaning that the urine is seen leaving the body and entering the canister. After the sample has been provided, it will be labeled, and the chain of custody will begin. This will be signed by every person who comes in contact with the sample. 

Once the sample is sent to the DOD lab, it will be screened using the Olympus AU-800 Automated Chemistry Analyzer. If it is given a clean reading, then it is moved forward. If it comes back positive for drugs within the system, it will be rerun through. Two positive readings will cause the sample to move forward to a more detailed test; in this, it will set a threshold for certain drugs (such as cocaine, marijuana, and more) and test it again. Even these standards, which seem rigorous, can be violated. An attorney who knows and understands this process will be invaluable for an effective defense. 

Combating Military Drug Offenses

Just because your drug test has returned with a positive reading does not mean you are out of luck. Some defenses can be utilized to help protect your legal rights – and specific legal actions that can be pursued by a defense attorney well-versed in the intricate nature of military drug tests. Our military drug defense attorneys are dedicated to doing just that. We know what is on the line with this nature’s criminal charges and are prepared to go ahead with them. 

We will fight to determine whether you falsely slipped the drug, whether you were given a substance and lied to about its nature, or even if there was an error in the test. Our experienced military drug defense attorneys will mount the most comprehensive defense possible in our efforts to help you protect yourself against the consequences of a failed drug test. 

Local and Global Military Defense Representation

Our team has represented service members from across the country and worldwide. We have the experience to mount a successful defense against the government and its vast supply of resources. We employ former military personnel who have been on the other side of such cases and can lend their first-hand insights to help you get the results you desire. 

Our military drug defense attorneys can help by providing the following: 

  • A focus on the future: We aim to protect your livelihood. Many of our clients support a family. We help you navigate the best path to continue to provide for those you care about the most. 
  • An empathetic approach: Serving our country places high demands on everyone in the service. You may live with day-to-day stress, and your case adds to the pressure you feel. We understand these feelings and will show you the compassion you deserve. 
  • A straightforward plan: Have you ever heard a lawyer speak and wondered what all that jargon meant? We talk like real people and won’t throw around confusing legal terms. We’ll discuss possible outcomes in a language you can understand. 

If you have failed your military drug test, you need a partner you can trust to walk you through this serious situation. We will do that without judgment. Our focus is to help you seek justice. We always remain honest and uphold our ethical standards while giving straight answers. Contact us today for a consultation.   

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Frequently Asked Questions

It is suggested you seek an attorney the moment you are notified of possible disciplinary action. There is a wide range of disciplinary action a service member might face, and the consequences of those actions vary greatly. A military law attorney can discuss the possible consequences, and how best to proceed in your particular case.  

Service members have the right to always remain silent. This right is listed in Article 31(b) of the Uniform Code of Military Justice. The natural inclination is to explain why you are not guilty of the allegation. However, the military will always try to use the statement against the service member. For this reason, we always advise clients to exercise their right to remain silent under Article 31(b). The military cannot use your right to remain silent against you.  

You always have the right to consult with an attorney. Depending of the type of investigation or disciplinary action, you may also have the right to have an attorney present with you. It is best to discuss your particular situation with a military law attorney to understand if that right applies to you. 

Yes, each one of the branches has a Court of Criminal Appeals. If you receive either a punitive discharge or in excess of 1 year of confinement, you have the right to an automatic appeal. Just like at the Court-Martial, you will have be detailed a military appellate defense counsel.  

Yes, most service members will be entitled to either an administrative separation board (or, if an officer, a Board of Inquiry). Each branch requires the service member to have been in a certain number of years before they can request to appear before a Board. If you are entitled to a Board, you will have the right to appear with a defense counsel, and present a defense before three Board members. 

 It depends on what the legal issue, and how you are able to challenge the legal issue. The military law attorneys at FPG have represented service members at trial that resulted in a not-guilty verdict. These clients were able to continue their military career as though the Court-Martial never happened.

Speak with A Military Drug Offenses Attorney Today