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Your rights regarding recreational marijuana

On Behalf of | Jun 7, 2018 | Criminal Defense |

Throughout the history of our country, lawmakers have been attempting to regulate recreational substances such as alcohol, tobacco and marijuana. There have even been attempts to outlaw sugar and other substances you probably take for granted in your home.

While medical science expounds the benefits of marijuana for the pain relief and comfort of those suffering from chronic or terminal illnesses, lawmakers hesitated to open the doors to legalizing a substance that has long associated with rebellion. Nevertheless, if you live in Massachusetts, you now enjoy the freedom of using marijuana for recreation in your home. However, it is important to understand the laws surrounding its use to avoid legal trouble.

Medical marijuana

Across the country, the laws regarding legal possession and use of marijuana are rapidly changing, although you may feel the changes are long overdue. Those in Massachusetts have enjoyed the recreational use of marijuana since 2016, although since 2013, you could register for medical marijuana if you had a certification from your doctor.

The use of marijuana as part of your treatment for a debilitating medical issue requires you to register and carry your registration card to prove your eligibility to purchase and possess medicinal marijuana. With a medical certificate, you may possess 10 ounces or less, which lawmakers consider to be a 60-day supply. You may also grow this amount in your home.

Recreational marijuana

If you enjoy the benefits of marijuana for recreation, you must be aware of the limits and restrictions the law places on its use, including these:

  • You must be at least 21 years old to possess marijuana.
  • You may have up to one ounce of marijuana in your possession when you are not at home.
  • You may keep up to 10 ounces in your home, but you must lock it up safely.
  • You may grow up to six plants in your home.
  • You may offer as a gift no more than one ounce of marijuana to someone who is 21 or older.

At the moment, licenses for marijuana cafés and businesses are available, and the statutes regulating your use of the drug in and around these establishments will likely change frequently as lawmakers adjust and tweak them. Additionally, marijuana is still illegal under federal law, and your use of it in public or possession beyond the permitted amounts may result in criminal charges. In such cases, you would do well to seek legal counsel.

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