If you are caught unlawfully possessing Percocet, you could be arrested, spend time in jail, be sentenced to prison and face serious legal and financial consequences.

If you are caught unlawfully possessing Percocet, you could be arrested, spend time in jail, be sentenced to prison and face serious legal and financial consequences.

Percocet is classified by the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) as a Schedule II drug. This class of drugs was determined to have a high potential for misuse, addiction, and physical dependence. Percocet is a controlled substance, which means it is illegal to possess Percocet without a valid prescription.

Crimes Associated with Percocet

Like many opioid painkillers, Percocet is highly addictive and is often misused. Because it is a controlled substance, the only legal way to get Percocet is through a prescription from a doctor. However, it is common for people who are struggling with addiction to Percocet to illegally buy the prescription drug on the black market.

Selling and distributing any controlled substance, including Percocet, is a felony crime. Federal penalties for trafficking a Schedule II drug like Percocet range from imprisonment for a minimum of five years up to life imprisonment, with fines of between $250,000 and $50 million. If death or a serious bodily injury happens as a result of using the drug, someone who is convicted for trafficking Percocet could spend an additional 20 years to life imprisonment.

Caught Without a Percocet Prescription

Because Percocet is a controlled substance, there are strict rules that dictate what type of use is legal and what types of uses are illegal. Illegally possessing any Schedule II drug is a felony. If you are caught with illegal Percocet, you could face serious legal and financial consequences.

Percocet Prescription in a Bottle

If your doctor writes you a prescription for Percocet, you should receive a bottle of the pills with your name on it. The bottle will specify the number of pills prescribed and expiration date for the prescription. As long as you have your prescribed medication in the bottle, it is in your possession, the number of pills is equal or less than the quantity prescribed and they are not expired, you should be within the limits of state and federal laws.

Prescription Outside the Bottle

Getting caught with your Percocet outside of the bottle could lead to some serious legal consequences. Even if you have a valid prescription for Percocet, the medication is a controlled substance and must remain in the bottle you receive from your pharmacist unless you are taking it. For example, the state of Maine has laws dictating that a person is not allowed to possess their own prescription drug unless it is in its original container or if it is in use. This law means that the only time it is legal for you to actually possess the drug is when you remove it from your prescription bottle and take it.

There are some exceptions to the rule, such as if a person repackages their medication to be more convenient than the original packaging; however, there are limits to these exceptions as well. Additionally, the laws that apply to possession of controlled substances vary from state to state, so be sure to secure legal advice to learn your state’s laws and requirements. Consult with your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions related to your prescriptions specifically.

Caught and Someone Else’s Percocet Prescription

Regardless of where you live, it is illegal to possess Percocet without a prescription. If you are caught with Percocet in a prescription bottle that has another person’s name on it, you will likely face serious legal charges. For example, in Ohio illegally possessing a drug like Percocet is a fifth-degree felony crime that could result in jail time lasting between six and 12 months. While it is always illegal to unlawfully possess Percocet, state laws vary so be sure to secure legal counsel to learn about your state’s laws and requirements.

Getting Caught High on Percocet

Percocet can be detected through urine, blood, saliva and hair tests. A blood test will only show Percocet in the system for up to a day, while saliva and urine tests can detect use for up to four days. A hair test can detect Percocet for up to 90 days after the last use. If you are caught with Percocet in your system, this still counts as illegal possession and you would be subject to the same laws that make illegally possessing Percocet a felony crime.

Summing Up: Getting Caught With Percocet

Illegally possessing Percocet is a serious matter. Possessing Percocet without a valid prescription or using it outside of how it is prescribed by a physician are signs of a Percocet addiction or dependence.

If you or a loved one struggle with a Percocet addiction, The Recovery Village can help. Contact a representative today to learn how our treatment centers can provide a personalized treatment plan that addresses addiction and co-occurring mental health disorders. Begin your healthier future today.

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By – Bryan Hindin
Bryan Hindin is a law clerk with years of experience working in personal injury, criminal defense, and employment law firms. Read more
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Editor – Thomas Christiansen
With over a decade of content experience, Tom produces and edits research articles, news and blog posts produced for Advanced Recovery Systems. Read more

Yeh, B. “Drug Offenses: Maximum Fines and Term[…]and Related Laws.” Congressional Research Service, January 20, 2015. Accessed April 1, 2019.

lp.FindLaw.com. “Ohio Revised Code Title XXIX. Crimes […]edure § 2925.11.” Accessed April 1, 2019.

Legislature.maine.gov. “§1107-A. Unlawful possession of scheduled drugs.” Accessed April 1, 2019.

Medical Disclaimer

The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers.