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Marijuana Laws in All 50 States

Can you legally smoke where you live? Let's find out!

By Michelle GPublished 6 years ago 10 min read

Support for the legalization of marijuana use is at an all time high. Nearly two-thirds of the United States favor broad recreational and medical use! There are four "types" of different laws related to the use of pot: Recreational, Medicinal, Decriminalized, and straight up Illegal.

Alabama: Illegal

Basically a single joint can give you up to a year's sentence in prison if actually convicted.

Alaska: Recreational

You must be 21 years of age to buy from a dispensary, and legally you cannot possess more than one ounce without it counting as a misdemeanor, and over four ounces is considered a felony. There is also no smoking in public (like almost all states).

Arizona: Medicinal

Although is it considered a felony to carry any recreational marijuana without a medical recommendation, the country does offer a wide variety of dispensaries for medical patients.

Arkansas: Medicinal (Not yet Operational)

Although Arkansas technically has programs for medical patients, they have had trouble actually getting it started. Possessing any recreational amount under four ounces is considered a misdemeanor; anything more is a felony.

California: Recreational

Marijuana in CA is nothing new, and it's become just about as casual as cracking open a beer. It is legal for anybody over 21, or with a medical rec, to possess up to an ounce of weed and grow up to six plants yourself! It is still a misdemeanor to sell any amount outside of a clinic, but medical patients can grow as many plants as they need to meet their needs.

Colorado: Recreational

You legally have to be 21 or older to possess up to one ounce of bud, and medical patients can possess up to two ounces and grow up to six plants (three of them mature). Unlike other states, it is actually legal to "transfer" your weed, like sharing it with friends for no financial compensation.

Connecticut: Medicinal & Decriminalized

Although the state came close to legalization, they instead at the moment have decriminalized the drug. Possession of a half-ounce or less is punishable for a fee up to $500, but no jail time. Growing or distributing still is considered a felony. This is the only state that excludes minors from getting medical recommendations, and has nine clinics across the whole state for medical patients.

Delaware: Medicinal & Decriminalized

The consequence of possession of one ounce or less results in a simple $100 fee, but no jail time. It is still a criminal offense for minors to smoke at all and for adults to smoke in public. Medically, you are allowed to own up to six ounces, but cannot grow at home.

Florida: Medicinal(ish)

Recreational possession of 20 grams is a misdemeanor and can get you a year in prison, while any more than that is a felony and can get you five years plus. Their medicinal program is limited to CDB (less than 0.8 percent THC) and is limited to very few conditions. There is no legal home growing.

Georgia: Illegal

With recreational offenses basically the same as Florida and also no legal home growing, medically Georgia is a little more forgiving. Patients can hold up to 20 ounces of CBD oil containing up to 5 percent THC.

Hawaii: Medicinal

You cannot get charged with a felony for possessing recreational weed unless you are caught with as least one pound! Althoughm it still is a felony to sell or deliver over an ounce. Medical patients can grow up to seven plants, mature or not.

Idaho: Illegal

Possession of three ounces or less is a misdemeanor, and any more is a felony. There is no medical program that allows for any THC use.

Illinois: Medicinal & Decriminalized

Charge for possessing a recreational amount of 10 grams or less results in a $250 fine, but no jail time. They have a pretty good medical program with over 50 dispensaries, but still, home growing five or fewer plants can you get a misdemeanor, any more a felony.

Indiana: Illegal

Being caught with 30 grams or less results in a misdemeanor. Any more gets you charged with a felony. The limited medical programs they have allow products only containing 0.3 percent CBD, no THC.

Iowa: Illegal

Possession of marijuana whatsoever gives a misdemeanor; growing, cultivating, and distributing is a felony charge. They do allow for very limited CBD medical use, but the programs are not fully operational.

Kansas: Illegal

Possession of any amount under 450 grams is considered a misdemeanor, and any amount more, including growing and selling, is a felony charge.

Kentucky: Illegal

Possession of 8 ounces or less or growing up to 5 plants is a misdemeanor charge, which gives 45 days in jail but no fee. Growing more than 5 plants is considered a felony. There is no medical program set up in this state, but they do sponsor hemp research.

Louisiana: Medicinal (CBD only)

For first time offenders, possession of 14 grams or less results in a $300 fine and 15 days jail time. For medical users, there is no home growing, and only CBD oil products, and very few products that contain traces of THC that must be non smokable.

Maine: Recreational

Adults 21 and over can legally possess up to 2.5 ounces and home-grow up to three plants. Medical patients can possess the same amount of weed but grow up to six mature plants, and there are plenty of dispensaries.

Maryland: Medicinal & Decriminalized

Possession of marijuana is legal up to 10 grams; anything more results in a misdemeanor. But to be charged with a felony, you will need to be caught with 50 pounds. Home-growing is not legal for medical users, but there are 34 dispensaries serving thousands of patients.

Massachusetts: Recreational

Anybody over the age 21 can cary up to one ounce and keep up to 10 ounces at home for recreational use. If growing at home, one can have up to six plants, but up to 12 over residence. Their medicinal program limits the dispensary amount to 35 across the state.

Michigan: Medicinal

Possession of any amount and "sharing" weed for no money is considered a misdemeanor charge. Selling and distribution is a felony. Medical patients can grow up to 12 plants and carry up to 2.5 ounces of bud.

Minnesota: Medicinal & Decriminalized

Possession of up to 42.5 grams is technically considered a misdemeanor, but it only comes with a $200 fine with no jail time. Their medical system allows for no home growing, and there are only eight clinics throughout the whole state.

Mississippi: Decriminalized

For first time offenders, possession of over 30 grams results in a $250 fine, but no jail time. There's no real medical program set up, and there are only CBD products with no more than 0.5 percent THC available to people with severe epilepsy.

Missouri: Decriminalized

Carrying up to 10 grams for a first time offender ends with a large fine, but no jail time. Second offense or possessing up to 35 grams comes with a misdemeanor charge with a possible one year sentence, and possessing any more gets you a felony and seven years. There is no medical program, though they do support some low CBD, THC products for certain conditions.

Montana: Medicinal

First time offenders for possessing up to 60 grams get charged with six months in prison and a $500 fine, and second offense gets you a three year sentence and a $1,000 fine. Any greater amount of marijuana is a felony with a $50,000 fine and a possible five year sentence. Medical users can cultivate up to four mature plants and four seedlings.

Nebraska: Decriminalized

First offenders charged with possession of up to one ounce get a $300 fee, second and third offenders get a $500 with five to seven days jail time. If caught with a pound or distribution, the minimum felony charge is five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Nevada: Recreational

Anyone 21 plus can legally carry and share one ounce (any more results in a felony), but possessing any more or smoking in public is charged as a misdemeanor; $600 fee but no jail time. Patients can carry up to 2.5 ounces and grow up to 12 mature plants.

New Hampshire: Medicinal & Decriminalized

Recreational possession of up to 20 grams is charged with a $100 fee but no jail time. Distribution and intent to sell are an automatic felony charge. Medical patients cannot do any home-growing, but can carry up to two ounces.

New Jersey: Medicinal

Possession of up to 50 grams is charged with "disorderly person" and results in a six month sentence and a $1,000 fine. Medical patients are limited to possessing two ounces a month, and can't home-grow.

New Mexico: Medicinal

First offenders caught with one ounce or less are charged with 15 days jail time and a $100 fee, and with every offense it gets worse. Distribution or selling of any kind is a felony charge. Medical users can grow up to 16 plants as long as only four of them are mature at the same time.

New York: Medicinal & Decriminalized

Possession of up to 25 grams for first offenders results in just a $100 fine, but for second offenders it's $200. If somebody shared a joint or shared an amount under two grams, its considered a misdemeanor with three months of jail time and a $500 fine. Home-growing can get you four years in prison if caught, and medical patients are restricted to non-smokable products.

North Carolina: Decriminalized

Carrying amounts up to a 14 grams is a misdemeanor accompanied with a $200 fine, while sale and cultivation are felonies. There is no real medical program set up, but the state does allow hemp and low THC-CBD products.

North Dakota: Illegal

Possession of an ounce of weed get you a 30 day sentence and a $1,500 fine. Any amount higher and it's a felony charge of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Ohio: Medicinal (Not yet Operational) & Decriminalized

Possession of up to 100 grams comes with a misdemeanor charge with no jail time but a $150 charge. Over 200 grams results in a felony with a fine at least $2,500 and a year or more in prison. They have medical programs waiting to be set into law.

Oklahoma: Illegal

Even for first offenders, possession of any amount gets a year in prison and a $1,000 fine, and all sales are charges as a felony. There are very few CBD-specific products allowed for patients.

Oregon: Recreational

21 plus can legally carry up to one ounce of weed with no problem. Two ounces will cause a $650 fine, but no jail will be needed until greater amounts. Home-growers also can grow up to four plants, while medical patients can grow six plants, plus 18 seedlings.

Pennsylvania: Medicinal

Dispensaries can only legally sell concentrates, oils, wax pens, etc., but no actual flower (though these laws may be changing soon). Patients can't grow at home and are limited to keeping only a month's supply of weed at a time.

Rhode Island: Medicinal & Decriminalized

This state has decriminalized any amount up to an ounce, but selling and cultivation are still felony charges. Medical patients can legally possess up to 2.5 ounces and cultivate up to 12 plants and seedlings at home.

South Carolina: Illegal

Possession of one ounce or less is charged with jail time and a $200 fine, and it gets worse with more offenses. All sales, distribution, and cultivating are all felony charges. There is some medical allowance for low-THC CBD products.

South Dakota: Illegal

Possession of less than two ounces (and selling under half an ounce) is a misdemeanor, giving a year in prison and a $2,000 fine. Any higher amount of marijuana is a felony charge, along with sales if the amount was greater than half an ounce.

Tennessee: Illegal

Getting caught with a half ounce is a misdemeanor charge and first time offenders are given a year in prison and a $250 fine. Selling, distribution, and cultivation of any kind are all felony charges. There is no medical program set up, but some CBD products available to medical patients.

Texas: Illegal

Possession laws are pretty much the same as the few states above, but highly restricted laws only allow for CBD products with just traces of THC for people with intractable epilepsy.

Utah: Illegal

Getting caught with under an ounce is charged with a fee that starts at $1,000 and a six month sentence. Basically the more you have, the longer you're in jail and the more you pay.

Vermont: Recreational

Adults 21+ can legally carry one ounce and grow two mature and four immature plants. Medical users can cary up to two ounces and grow up to 12 plants.

Virginia: Illegal

First time offenders possessing less than a half ounce can face 30 days in jail and a $500 fine. More offenses and it goes up to a year in prison and a $2,500 fine. The state recently starting allowing medical CBD to be used.

Washington, DC: Recreational

Recreational use here is a gray area, because it is illegal to sell it there, so one must either get it out of state or know where to go. Medical and recreational users can carry up to two ounces, but there are no dispensaries.

Washington: Recreational

21+ legally can carry up to one ounce, but public smoking can result in a $100 fine. Possessing over 40 grams, selling, and growing are felony charges. Medical users can carry up to three ounces and grow up to six plants.

West Virginia: Medicinal (Not yet Operational)

Possession of any amount of weed can get you anywhere between 90 days to 6 months in prison. There are medical programs that have been signed into law, and hope to have dispensaries running soon.

Wisconsin: Illegal

Any amount of bud is punishable by six months in prison and a $1,000 for first offense. Second offense, home-growing, and sales are all felony charges resulting in 3.5 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Wyoming: Illegal

Misdemeanor charges are given for having any amount of marijuana, and for "being under the influence" (AKA being faded). If caught with more than three ounces, it's a felony charge resulting in five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.


About the Creator

Michelle G

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