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The ways people get prescription drugs can lead to fraud charges

| Aug 18, 2020 | Criminal Defense |

Addiction isn’t something that starts because a person is looking to make their life more difficult. Instead, it happens by accident and exposure to an addicting substance. For many adults, an opiate or opioid addiction starts with an injury or illness.

The physician managing their care provides them with the prescription for pain relief, and by the time they’ve used all the prescription medication, they feel like they need more of it.

People struggling with addiction can make decisions that are actually dangerous for themselves and others. The steps some people will take in order to get more of a medication could leave them facing prescription fraud charges.

Stolen prescription pads are a common form of fraud

Some people will go to their doctor’s office knowing that they can’t get another prescription for the medication they want. They seek to distract and confuse the physician during their appointment so that they can steal the prescription pad the doctor carries or at least remove several pages from it. That specialized stationery will then serve at the means for them to get their hands on the drugs they want.

Prescription fraud can also involve altering a valid prescription

A completely fake prescription leaves someone at risk for getting caught at the pharmacy, especially if the pharmacist calls the physician to verify the prescription. Altering an existing prescription is often a safer option for those trying to secure a supply of a controlled substance.

Changing a prescription for 40 pills to a prescription for 90 pills is a fast and efficient way to more than double how much of a drug a person can receive.

Some people create their own prescription pads

The risk of a pharmacy calling a physician’s office to verify a prescription is a significant one. Getting the basic prescription information from a doctor’s pad and then printing their own pad with a different phone number is a possible way for those addicted to prescription medication to get the drug from a pharmacy.

All three of these tactics may have short-term success but absolutely leave the individual vulnerable to criminal prosecution if they get caught. Older adults and professionals who wind up facing severe penalties because of an addiction should be proactive in their response to any pending charges that they face.