How Does Marijuana Legalization Affect Nevada DUI Law?

Decriminalization of recreational marijuana use has no impact on Nevada DUI law.

In November 2016, Nevada voters legalized recreational marijuana use by passing the “Initiative to Regulate and Tax Marijuana” (also known as ballot “Question Two”). Following legalization, many have concerns about marijuana users on Nevada roadways. But how, if at all, does marijuana decriminalization affect Nevada DUI law?

In short, it has no effect. Here’s why.

In Nevada, it’s illegal to drive or be in actual physical control of a vehicle while:

  • impaired by marijuana “to a degree that renders a person incapable of safely driving or exercising actual physical control of a vehicle,” or
  • having a certain concentration of marijuana in the blood (two nanograms per milliliter) or urine (ten nanograms per milliliter).

So, anyone who drives while impaired by or with a prohibited concentration of marijuana can be convicted of a DUI. That the driver may have ingested marijuana legally doesn’t matter. (Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § § 484C.105, 484C.110 (2016).)

Lest there be any doubt, the Nevada initiative explicitly says that driving and boating under the influence of marijuana remains illegal.  (Initiative to Regulate and Tax Marijuana, § § 2(f), 4(a) (2016).)

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