The legal risks of tampering with drug and alcohol screening tests

On Behalf of | Feb 1, 2024 | Drug Charges |

Police officers aren’t the only ones administering drug and alcohol tests at traffic stops; workplaces might also conduct their own screening tests as part of an effort to maintain a substance-free environment.

Faced with the risk of getting caught, some people might attempt to cheat their way out of drug or alcohol testing. In South Carolina, tampering with drug and alcohol screening tests is not just unethical — it’s illegal. Individuals who attempt to defraud such tests face serious legal consequences.

Defrauding screening tests is a crime

According to state law, it’s unlawful for a person to commit the following:

  • Sell, give away, distribute or offer urine with the intent to use the urine to defraud a drug or alcohol screening test.
  • Attempt to foil or defeat a drug or alcohol screening test by substituting or spiking a sample.
  • Adulterate a urine or other bodily fluid sample to trick a screening test.
  • Possess adulterants with the intent to use them to defraud a screening test.
  • Sell adulterants that can trick a screening test.

Even if a person never intended to use a “clean” sample of urine or adulterants for testing, they can still face charges if they intend to sell it to another.

Penalties for violation

A first-time conviction for this offense is a misdemeanor. It carries up to $5,000 in fines and three years in prison. However, for a second or subsequent conviction, the offense becomes a felony. A person convicted at this criminal grade faces up to $10,000 in fines and five years in prison.

It’s important to take South Carolina’s laws regarding drug and alcohol screening tests seriously. Even if you don’t use illicit drugs and controlled substances, you could get into trouble with the law if you offer to sell clean urine samples or adulterants to your co-workers. If you face charges, consider consulting with a legal professional to understand your rights and defense options.


FindLaw Network