Oregon’s Marijuana Driving Laws and Personal Injury

Marijuana Driving Laws in Oregon

In Oregon, driving under the influence of marijuana is illegal and can have significant consequences. According to Oregon’s revised statute, you are violating the law if you drive a vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating marijuana, a controlled substance, or an inhalant. [1]

The court can order you to pay fines if you are found guilty of driving under the influence. For the first conviction, the fine is $1,000; for the second conviction, it’s $1,500, along with jail time and license suspension. [1]

If you have been convicted of driving under the influence two or more times in the last ten years, it’s considered a Class C felony. This applies to convictions for driving under the influence of marijuana, alcohol, or drugs. If found guilty of a Class C felony, you must serve at least 90 days in prison with no possibility of reduction for any cause. [2]

Refusal to take the breath test or urine test for intoxicants will result in a fine of $650. [3] The maximum fine for the conviction of driving under the influence could be $10,000 if there was a passenger in the car who was under 18 years old and at least three years younger than you. [1]

Although driving under the influence of intoxicants is illegal, the Oregon state law does not set a specific limit for tetrahydrocannabinol (THC level) intoxication as it does for alcohol. Instead, police officers trained as drug recognition experts assess whether a driver suspected of being intoxicated might be under the influence of THC or another drug.

Marijuana Driving Laws in Oregon

Impact of Marijuana Driving Laws on Personal Injury Cases in Oregon

The use of marijuana can affect drivers’ ability to operate a vehicle safely. When they are under the influence of cannabis or marijuana, their reaction times may be slower, coordination may be impaired, and their judgment may be altered. These effects can significantly impact their driving abilities, potentially leading to an increased likelihood of accidents on the road.

If an intoxicated driver causes an accident that leads to personal injuries, the victims may pursue legal action to seek compensation for their injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.

In addition, if the driver was found to be under the influence, it could lead to punitive damages if the court deems it appropriate, on top of compensatory damages.

In Oregon, law enforcement officers use a variety of methods to assess the level of marijuana impairment, such as blood samples or urine tests. If a driver is deemed impaired, they can face criminal charges for driving under the influence of drugs, and this evidence can also be used in civil personal injury cases.

When accidents occur due to marijuana-impaired driving, filing personal injury claims becomes an option for those who have sustained injuries as a result of the accident. These claims are based on the legal principle of negligence, where the impaired driver is considered at fault for causing the accident due to their impaired state.

According to a report in 2021 by Statista, 29.84% of adults in Oregon use marijuana. [4]

Filing Personal Injury Claims in Accidents Involving Marijuana DUI in Oregon

When filing a personal injury claim arising from an accident involving marijuana-impaired driving, several key steps are involved:

  • Documentation of the accident: Collect evidence from the accident scene. This may include obtaining the police report, photographs of the vehicles and the accident scene, and gathering witness statements. Evidence of the at-fault driver’s impairment, such as failed sobriety tests or blood test results, will also support the claim.
  • Seeking medical attention: Seek medical attention promptly and document medical records and professional diagnoses to explain the extent of the injuries sustained, the required treatment, and associated medical expenses. This will serve as evidence in the personal injury claim.
  • Legal counsel: Consulting a competent attorney with experience in impaired driving cases is recommended. Injury attorneys can provide legal advice for various aspects of the claim, assess the viability of the case, and advocate on behalf of the injured party.
  • Determining liability: Determine the extent of liability of the impaired driver. This involves analyzing the evidence and assessing the role of impairment in causing the accident and subsequent injuries.
  • Pursuing maximum compensation: If the impaired driver is found liable for the accident, the injured party can pursue compensation for various damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, property damage, and, in some cases, punitive damages.
  • Negotiation and litigation: The personal injury claim is often settled through negotiation with the liable party’s insurance company. If a fair settlement cannot be reached, the case may proceed to litigation, where it is presented in a court of law.
Filing Personal Injury Claims in Accidents Involving Marijuana DUI in Oregon

Contact Goldberg & Loren today if you’ve been in an Oregon car accident caused by someone driving under the influence of marijuana.


Yes, if you cause a personal injury accident while driving under the influence of marijuana in Oregon, you can be held liable for any resulting injuries or damages. Driving under the influence of marijuana is considered negligent behavior, and you may be required to compensate the injured party for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.

Oregon follows a comparative negligence system for personal injury claims, meaning each party's degree of fault is considered when determining liability and damages. [5] If you were driving under the influence of marijuana at the time of the accident, your level of impairment and negligence would be considered in the assessment of liability and potential damages.

If you are convicted of driving under the influence of marijuana, the penalties may include fines, license suspension, mandatory drug and alcohol treatment, community service, and possibly even jail time. The specific penalties can vary based on factors such as the driver's prior history of DUII offenses and the circumstances of the incident.


[1] ORS 813.010 – Driving under the influence of intoxicants. (n.d.). https://oregon.public.law/statutes/ors_813.010

[2] ORS 813.011 – Felony driving under the influence of intoxicants. (n.d.). https://oregon.public.law/statutes/ors_813.011

[3] ORS 813.095 – Offense of refusal to take a test for intoxicants. (n.d.). https://oregon.public.law/statutes/ors_813.095

[4] Marijuana use by state U.S. 2021 | Statista. (2023, November 29). Statista. https://www.statista.com/statistics/723822/cannabis-use-within-one-year-us-adults/

[5] ORS 31.600 – Contributory negligence not bar to recovery. (n.d.). https://oregon.public.law/statutes/ors_31.600

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