A Guide to New Hampshire’s 5 Controlled Dangerous Substances (CDS) Classifications

Throughout the United States, each state regulates the possession of controlled dangerous substances (CDS). However, the definition and penalties for illegal possession differ between each state. While New Hampshire recognizes well-known drugs like cocaine and marijuana as CDS, the law also understands the differences among the controlled dangerous substances and divides them into five “schedules.”

By having these separate categories, the law ensures that those with less severe drug abuse charges do not face the same penalties and consequences as those handling more dangerous substances. In order to understand your own controlled dangerous substance charge, you will need to determine which schedule your drug falls under.

New Hampshire’s 5 Controlled Dangerous Substances (CDS) Classifications

Anyone who knowingly possesses, purchases, transports, or sells any controlled dangerous substance may face severe drug charges in New Hampshire. There are five precise schedules that decrease in severity, recognizing Schedule I as the most severe and dangerous and Schedule V as low risk and easily accessible. 

These categories are based on the substance’s perceived level of danger, recognized medical use, and probability of abuse. Learn more about the different schedules below:

  • Schedule I: Extremely high risk of abuse and is not currently accepted for medical use. Examples include heroin, ecstasy, LSD, and quaaludes.
  • Schedule II: High risk for abuse with some drugs being accepted for medical use. Examples include OxyContin, Fentanyl, Adderall, Ritalin, Vicodin, cocaine, methamphetamine (meth), and methadone.
  • Schedule III: Low risk of abuse and accepted for medical use. Examples include Tylenol with codeine, anabolic steroids, and testosterone.
  • Schedule IV:  Low risk of abuse and accepted for medical use. Examples include Xanax, Valium, Ativan, and Ambien.
  • Schedule V:  Low risk of abuse and accepted for medical use. Examples include cough syrup with codeine, Lomotil, Motofen, and Lyrica.

Possessing any controlled dangerous substance without a valid medical prescription is illegal in New Hampshire. While the penalties vary depending on the type, amount, action, and the number of prior convictions, all first offenders of CDS possession have a mandatory minimum fine of $350.

How Can a Skilled Criminal Defense Attorney Help You?

Navigating New Hampshire’s criminal justice system often feels stressful and overwhelming without the representation of a seasoned criminal defense attorney. When you partner with Hayes Law, PLLC, you will have an attorney who will research the facts and thoroughly investigate every detail of your case. Some other ways we can help protect your rights include the following:

  • Answering your legal questions 
  • Gathering essential evidence
  • Crafting a solid defense for your unique situation
  • Evaluating the severity of potential penalties
  • Working on getting your charges dropped before they are formally filed
  • Partnering with you to formulate a plea
  • Conducting an independent investigation into the prosecutor’s case
  • Fighting aggressively for your rights and interests before and during trial
  • Guiding you through the complex legal process

Various factors contribute to the severity of a drug charge in New Hampshire. With an experienced lawyer by your side, they will help you identify potential legal issues and guide you through the legal process. Speak with a legal professional at Hayes Law, PLLC today. 

Facing Harsh Drug Charges in New Hampshire? Contact Attorney Hayes Today

From career opportunities to social relationships, a drug charge in New Hampshire may drastically impact your life and future. Without highly-qualified legal representation, your rights are at significant risk. Before you speak with anyone, contact Hayes Law, PLLC for knowledgeable legal counsel. 

By challenging the state’s evidence and vigorously defending your rights, Attorney Hayes will offer you the best possible outcome for your claim. We devote our time and resources to advocating for clients and making sure their interests and rights are protected. Schedule a free consultation by completing our contact form or calling (978) 314-4950 today.


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