Marijuana and New York Drug Courts

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Written by Jeffrey Johnson
Insurance Lawyer Jeffrey Johnson

UPDATED: Jul 15, 2021

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New York is currently expanding its drug treatment court system with the goal of making a drug treatment court available in every jurisdiction in the state. Drug courts are a relatively new part of our judicial system, with the first ones being introduced in the 1990s. Since then, drug courts have been proven to reduce the rate of recidivism and cost to taxpayers when compared to traditional penalties like prison sentences. Although there are state-advised recommended practices for New York drug courts, the specific operations of each New York drug treatment court varies by jurisdiction. If you would like to learn more about New York’s drug courts or locate the nearest one, go to the Drug Treatment Courts website. Drug courts will typically refer marijuana offenders to a program for treating their marijuana dependence rather than penalizing them for it. Marijuana rehabilitation centers and other programs are not always state-run but must adhere to New York state guidelines in order to be used by participants of drug court, or they must be certified by the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS).

The benefits of participating in New York drug treatment court vary depending upon the specific procedures of the particular drug court. Either a post-plea or a pre-plea model is imposed depending on the drug court and the particular offense. The pre-plea model, which is generally the method used for misdemeanor crimes, is the preferred model for offenders because it results in no conviction after the successful completion of a New York drug treatment program. Not having to report a conviction on your criminal record is a huge plus when applying for jobs, schools, or various licenses. A post-plea model, on the other hand, results in a conviction on your record but does offer several benefits, including a reduced jail or prison sentence, or a reduction of a felony to a misdemeanor. Perpetrators of New York marijuana offenses are generally diverted to rehab instead of imprisonment.

Follow this link for more information about New York Marijuana Laws and New York Medical Marijuana Laws

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