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Intoxication or ataxia? Your medical condition isn't an offense

Looking drunk doesn't always mean a person is. There are many medical conditions that make individuals look like they're intoxicated, even though they haven't had a drop. For instance, ataxia, which is a genetic disorder, can make you lose your coordination and slur your speech. This is a progressive disease, which means it will get worse over time, and that can mean looking like you're constantly intoxicated.

The problem with conditions like this is that it can make others think you should be pulled over or stopped when you're walking because you look like you've had too much to drink. You could face public intoxication charges or be accused of drunk driving even though you're really just suffering from a medical condition's symptoms.

In most cases, when you struggle with a condition like this, you'll be given a medical ID that you can use to discuss your condition with police officers or others who are concerned about your level of intoxication. This should be enough to identify your condition. It also explains why you would be likely to fail a field sobriety test.

If you've been charged with a DUI despite suffering a medical condition, you don't have to face the courts alone. Your attorney can help you provide the courts with the information needed to possibly get your case dropped or changed. Your medical condition should not lead to a DUI when you weren't drinking. Our website has more information about what to do next if you have to go to court to fight an unfair DUI or arrest.

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