SB 159 puts new restrictions on selling dextromethorphan in Nevada

Posted by Neil Shouse | Oct 18, 2017 | 0 Comments

Nevada recently passed Senate Bill 159, which prohibits knowingly selling substances containing dextromethorphan to a minor (under 18 years old) without a valid prescription. Dextromethorphan (DXM or DM) is a common ingredient in such cough suppressants as NyQuil, Robitussin, Dimetapp, Benylin DM, Mucinex DM,Camydex-20  tablets, Vicks, Coricidin, Delsym, TheraFlu, and Cheracol D.

Contrary to popular belief, dextromethorphan is not an ingredient of methamphetamine. The over-the-counter meth ingredient is pseudoephedrine, used for congestion relief. But abusing dextromethorphan can still cause altered mental states and carries the risk of seizures and death. Common names for dextromethorphan include Sizzurp, Skittles, Robo, DXemon Juice, Robotripping, Poor man's PCP, and Agent Lemon.


People or owners of retail establishments are in compliance with SB 159 as long as they:

  • Reasonably assume, based on the buyer's appearance, that the buyer is 25 years of age or older; or    
  • Demand that the buyer present a valid ID which shows that he/she is 18 years of age or older; are presented a valid ID which shows that the buyer is 18 years of age or older; and reasonably rely upon the ID presented by the buyer.   

Owners of retail establishments specifically are in compliance with SB 159 as long as they:

  • Had no actual knowledge of the dextromethorphan sale; and
  • Establish and carry out a continuing program of training for employees which is reasonably designed to prevent dextromethorphan sales to minors without prescriptions

Sellers who knowingly sell products containing dextromethorphan to minors will get a warning for a first offense. Afterwards, they are assessed a civil penalty of $50, unless the seller provides sufficient documentation that a continuing program of training for employees is in place.    



About the Author

Neil Shouse

Southern California DUI Defense attorney Neil Shouse graduated with honors from UC Berkeley and Harvard Law School (and completed additional graduate studies at MIT).


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