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Accessing the Louisiana drug courts after a criminal charge

On Behalf of | Jun 14, 2019 | Firm News

Certain mental health conditions can have a profound impact on your legal situation and your future success. Addiction is definitely one of those conditions, and it is often the result of previous issues, like abuse or trauma.

Left unchecked, addiction can soon result in criminal charges that can change the course of your life. Many people who commit drug offenses do not do so because they take joy in breaking the law. Instead, their medical condition of addiction pushes them to do something that would otherwise not be in their nature.

The courts of Louisiana recognize how untreated addiction and trauma can result in drug abuse and criminal charges. They do allow people in certain situations to ask for the intervention of a drug court instead of simply going through the standard criminal trial process.

Drug court helps people overcome addiction

When you go through drug court instead of the criminal courts, there will be many differences in the process. Instead of focusing on proving whether or not you committed a crime, the focus is on helping you become sober.

Typically, participants in a drug court program have to agree to randomized drug testing to ensure their ongoing sobriety. It is also common for participants in drug court programs to wind up in a rehabilitation facility, typically on an inpatient basis.

In other words, you will still find yourself incarcerated and unable to leave. However, instead of being locked in a cell at jail, you will be at a drug treatment center where you will go through counseling and learn coping skills to help you overcome your addiction.

Drug courts can help you start over and improve your chance of a better future

For those who don’t seek care or treatment, a drug charge could be the beginning of a downward spiral. A conviction will keep them from ever going to college in many cases, as it will prevent them from securing federal student aid.

At the same time, the criminal record that results will also bar the convict from securing many of the best paying and most secure jobs available. Many of the biggest industries in Louisiana rigorously drug test and engage in background checks for their staff members. Going through the drug courts means avoiding the criminal record and taking control of your life when addiction has been running the show.

Instead of being the beginning of a downward spiral, a drug court hearing could instead be the end of someone’s downward trajectory and the point at which their life begins getting better. If you believe that your upcoming drug offense case in Louisiana might warrant participation in the drug court system, you should sit down to talk with a Louisiana attorney about your options.