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Can I sell my unused HIV/AIDS medication on the street?
Jun 29, 2013

My dr changed my meds and now I'm no longer taking atripla. I've got to recoup some of this cost and the pharmacy won't buy this back. Is there a legal way I can sell these pill I'm sure someone out there needs them. How much can I get per pill?

Response from Ms. Douaihy

Dear Writer,

I am so glad that you wrote in with this question. I infrequently use all caps but for dramatic effect I beg you to please NOT SELL YOUR PRESCRIPTION MEDICATION under any circumstances! Selling or other diversion of one's prescription medication is a criminal offense and against the law in most states. In New York State, where I practice, criminal diversion of prescription medications in the fourth degree is a class A misdemeanor.

As a civil attorney working in one of the finest public defenders offices in the country, every day I see wonderful people facing disproportionate penalties for alleged criminal behavior. Even the slightest of transgressions may lead to harsh criminal prosecutions and a cascade of enmeshed penalties that may destroy your life. Selling your prescription meds may not only expose you to a criminal prosecution, potential conviction and jail time. An arrest alone for something like this may trigger draconian civil collateral consequences like losing your job or your apartment. To learn more about civil consequences of criminal conviction, check out the American Bar Association's website, linked below.

In light of the above please do not sell or otherwise distribute your medications. If you have extra prescription pills, please talk to your doctor. We need you to stay safe, healthy and productive. Interfacing with the criminal justice system could be catastrophic and is simply not worth it. If you have any questions about what constitutes criminal or unlawful conduct, take the time to learn more. Call the clerk of court at your nearest municipal courthouse and ask who your town's public defender is. Give your local public defender's office a call to inquire about what constitutes unlawful behavior with respect to diverting prescription meds. Each state has its own system of laws and rules regarding criminal conduct.

Stay safe and thank you for writing in.

American Bar Association



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