Over the years, you’ve probably seen or heard in the news about marijuana being decriminalized or legalized. However, decriminalization and legalization doesn’t eliminate the possibility of penalties in certain circumstances. Some states have chosen to only legal medical weed, or medical CBD.
What is and isn’t allowed, and what penalties are still handed out and in what circumstances, varies by state. It is therefore useful to know the specific legal status of marijuana state by state.
Also, even if all states legalized marijuana, it is not the same as federal marijuana legalization.
Status of weed by state
Weed is completely illegal in Nebraska. In all other states, at least CBD is legal. Recreational weed is legal in 18 states. Even in states where recreational weed is still illegal, the penalties have been significantly reduced. In Maryland, for example, possession of amounts between 10 grams and 50 pounds is a misdemeanor. In states where CBD or medical weed is allowed, the penalties for recreational possession and use of weed varies. In Louisiana, where medical weed is legal, the penalty for possession of up to 14 grams of weed is a $100 fine. In Kentucky, where medical CBD is legal, possession of fewer than eight ounces is a misdemeanor. Also, states that have legalized medical weed differ in what they permit medical users to do. In Hawaii, for example, you may grow up to seven plants for medical purposes. In Louisiana, medical weed is legal, but growing weed is not.
The way recreational use of weed is treated in states where it is legalized depends on which state you are in. In Alaska, you can possess up to one ounce of weed and grow no more than three mature weed plants. Sale and delivery of weed by entities that aren’t state-licensed is prohibited. Possession of four or more ounces is considered a felony. In Illinois, if you are a resident, you can possess up to 30 grams, while you can only possess up 15 grams if you are a nonresident. Some states have different rules for weed that is possessed on person and weed that is possessed in a private residence. For example, in Massachusetts, you can possess 10 ounces in a private residence, while you can only carry up to one ounce on person.
Is weed legal in New Jersey? In New Jersey, if you are an adult, you can possess up to six ounces of weed. Distribution of up to one ounce of weed is permitted. Growing weed is not permitted.
Federal legislation of marijuana
Importantly, state legalization of weed is not the same as federal weed legalization. Weed is still illegal on the federal level. This means that without any state laws regarding recreational or medical weed, or CBD, weed is completely illegal by default. Until weed is federally legal, you will be subject to whatever decisions are made by the state. There is still bills in the works that aim to decriminalize or loosen penalties for recreational weed use in various states. Efforts to get marijuana legalize would do well to focus on federal legislation. Once it is federally legal, weed will be decriminalized and permitted across the country, regardless of how a specific state wishes to treat the matter.