It may seem harmless to share a prescription medication when you believe someone needs it. Perhaps you have a bottle of antibiotics you did not finish and you want to give it to a friend with an ear infection, who does not have medical insurance. Maybe another friend has anxiety over an upcoming test and you give him one of your anti-anxiety pills. You may think there is nothing wrong with helping someone who needs medication, but you and other Wisconsin residents might not realize this practice can be dangerous – and, in fact, can land you in legal trouble. 

According to FindLaw, it is illegal to share prescription medication with anyone other than whom the drug was prescribed by a doctor and dispensed by a pharmacist. Depending on weight, age, other medications they are taking and additional health factors, people can have dangerous side effects or allergic reactions to medication their doctor has not prescribed for them specifically. Also, drugs in your medicine cabinet that have passed the expiration date can either lose their effectiveness or create an adverse reaction. 

It is also important to understand that a person who uses your prescription medication might not realize the possible side effects, which may include sleepiness or intoxication. If the person gets behind the wheel after taking the drug, he or she may get into an accident or receive a DUI. Authorities who determine the source of the illegal drug sharing may charge you with a fine or a crime. Since drug charges may be complex, this information is not meant to replace the advice of a lawyer.