Understanding Iowa’s controlled substances laws

If you are facing drug-related charges, it is imperative that you understand the nature and consequences of these allegations.

The Iowa legal code is comprehensive and clear in defining controlled substances, identifying illegal actions associated with them and categorizing degrees of offense and punishment.

What is a controlled substance?

The federal Controlled Substances Act classifies illegal drugs according to five levels (schedules) based on medical use value and the abuse potential of the substance. Iowa law mirrors these classifications at the state level. In some cases, your actions might fall under federal jurisdiction when it comes to things like transporting illegal substances across state lines.

It is against the law to illegally possess, distribute or use an illegal substance or drug paraphernalia. You may also break the law if you are at a gathering where such substances are knowingly and intentionally distributed.

Who is susceptible to violations of drug law?

Violations of federal and state drug laws related also occur frequently among populations that are not usually associated with the term criminal. Categories of professions licensed to dispense or work with controlled substances can break the law as easily as anyone. These categories include:

  • Physicians, dentists and some psychologists
  • Nurses, interns and physician assistants with delegated authority to administer controlled substances
  • Pharmacists
  • Veterinarians and their assistants
  • Drug researchers
  • Employees at hospitals and similar institutions

In the event of allegations of criminal misconduct related to controlled substance possession, administration, use or transportation, you need an ironclad defense to preserve your interests and reputation.