What Happens if You're Caught With Drugs? - Banyan Treatment Center

What Happens if You’re Caught With Drugs?

What Happens if You're Caught With Drugs?

What happens if you are caught with drugs will vary depending on the state.

What happens if you are caught with drugs will vary depending on the state. While Florida has lower sentencing rates, they also have harsh drug possession penalties. It’s rare to be caught with drugs and not charged. Drug charges can be terrifying, especially if you’re unaware of the legalities behind the process. If you’re facing drug possession charges, it’s important to understand the laws surrounding these particular penalties.

As a center for drug and alcohol treatment in Stuart, we strongly advise against any form of drug or alcohol abuse. If you have a drug addiction, you increase your chances of facing legal action in addition to the physical consequences you may face.

What Qualifies as Drug Possession?

Before an individual is charged with drug possession, the prosecutor must be able to prove that the person knew the substance was illegal (or a controlled substance), and that they knowingly had possession of it. Drug possession charges also include constructive possession, which refers to a person’s access to an illegal drug even if it wasn’t on their person at the time.1 While the penalties per substance may vary depending on which state the individual is in, what constitutes drug possession is generally similar all across the board.


Florida’s Drug Schedules

Florida has five drug schedules in which substances are categorized according to their potential for abuse, whether they have an accepted medical use, and their potential for physical and psychological dependence.

Florida’s five drug schedules are:2

  • Schedule one: Include drugs that have a high potential for abuse and have no medical use (includes heroin, LSD, and fentanyl derivatives)
  • Schedule two: Includes drugs that have a high potential for abuse as well as some that may be used for medicinal purposes. (includes cocaine, opium, codeine, oxycodone, and morphine)
  • Schedule three: Includes drugs that have a lower potential for abuse and can also have medical use. These drugs may cause lower dependence. (includes anabolic steroids)
  • Schedule four: Includes drugs that have a lower potential for abuse than the drugs mentioned previously. Drugs in this schedule may also have an accepted medical use and they may cause less physical and psychological dependence. (includes diazepam and lorazepam)
  • Schedule five: Includes drugs that have the lowest potential for abuse, have a medical use, and have lower risks of dependence. (includes brivaracetam and ezogabine)

At Banyan Detox Stuart, we offer various addiction treatments, including our intensive inpatient program. Many individuals with a drug addiction have faced jail time and drug charges. The best way to avoid what happens if you are caught with drugs is by getting help fast.


List of Drug Charges by Substance

Drug possession charges by state vary on the type of substance and how much of it is discovered. Below are some of the most commonly used illegal drugs and their charges.



Marijuana possession of at least 20 grams is considered a misdemeanor. A person with this charge can receive a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a $1,000 fine. The more marijuana the person has in their possession, the longer they may be imprisoned and the higher the fine. A mandatory sentence can be as long as 30 years, with fines up to $200,000.2



Possession of fewer than 4 grams of heroin is considered a third-degree felony, and possession of more than four grams is categorized as drug trafficking and a first-degree felony. If heroin is sold near or on school property, the charges are increased. Anyone caught with 30 kilograms of heroin will face a first-degree felony charge. This is also a trafficking charge that results in a life sentence.2



A person caught with possession of 28 grams of cocaine, but less than 200 grams, may be sentenced to a minimum of three years imprisonment and a fine of $50,000. More than 200 grams of cocaine but less than 400 grams can result in a minimum of 7 years in prison and a $100,000 fine. More than 400 grams of cocaine, but less than 150 kilograms may result in a minimum of 15 years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000.2



Individuals caught with 14 grams or more, but less than 28 grams of methamphetamine, may face a three-year sentence and charged with a $50,000 fine. 28 grams or more, but less than 200 grams, leads to a minimum sentence of 7 years and a $100,000 fine. A person caught with more than 200 grams of methamphetamine will be sentenced to a minimum of 15 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.2

Many individuals who struggle with drug addiction have found themselves in trouble with the legal system. Not only do you risk your health when you abuse drugs, but you also increase your chances of imprisonment and legal problems. By receiving professional addiction treatment in Stuart, you can avoid the repercussions of substance abuse.

If you or someone you know has become entangled in drug or alcohol abuse, do not wait a moment longer to get help. Call us today at 888-280-4763. to get started.


  1. USSC- Weighing the Charges: Simple Possession of Drugs in the Federal Criminal Justice System
  2. OS- The 2020 Florida Statutes
Alyssa who is the National Director of Digital Marketing, joined the Banyan team in 2016, bringing her five-plus years of experience. She has produced a multitude of integrated campaigns and events in the behavioral health and addictions field. Through strategic marketing campaign concepts, Alyssa has established Banyan as an industry leader and a national household name.