Drug classifications influence what your maximum sentence may be. Michigan has five classifications with Schedule I as the most serious and Schedule V as the least serious.
Drugs that are highly addictive and don’t have an accepted medical use are Schedule I. The harshest drug crime penalties are typically for Schedule I substances. Other elements of your case affect your sentencing, such as violence and minors. If you harmed someone or involved a minor in your crime, then there are more serious penalties. Under federal drug crimes law, marijuana is a Schedule I substance, despite the fact some states have legalized it for recreational and/or medical use.
Schedule II drugs have an exempted medical use but typically have tight restrictions on their application because they have addictive properties or could be dangerous in high doses. Morphine, methamphetamine, Oxycodone and cocaine are examples of Schedule II substances in Michigan.
Schedule III drugs aren’t as addictive as Schedule II and Schedule I. Anabolic steroids, ketamine, and lower potency morphine fall under this drug classification.
Schedule IV substances have a low risk for abuse and aren’t highly addictive. Ativan, Xanax, Valium, and Rohypnol are classified as Schedule IV drugs in Michigan.
Most Schedule V substances are over-the-counter drugs, such as cough syrup with codeine and cold medicine with ephedrine. Some people choose to abuse those substances, though, to get high.
Drug crime penalties
The type of drug you were using, selling, or distributing influences what penalties you face. Possession of ecstasy or methamphetamine could result in up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $15,000. Marijuana, however, has lower penalties of around one year in jail and a $2,000 fine.
Schedule I and Schedule II possession is typically a felony that’s punishable by up to life in prison and a fine of $1,000,000. You would usually need to have over 1 kg of the drug to face life in prison and a $1,000,000 fine. Possession of 25–50 grams is punishable by up to 4 years in prison and a $25,000 fine.
How addictive a drug plays a role in its classification. Legislators also look at widely accepted medical uses for the substance when determining how to classify it.