There has been a recent push to legalize marijuana for medical and recreational use around the country, as we're sure you know. Several states already have laws in place that allow the use of marijuana, while others may have laws in place where it can only be used for medical purposes. But, where is pot legal? If you’re looking visit a city where pot is legal or plan your next move based on what states have legalized marijuana, then here are the basics.
Where is pot legal?
California was the first state to legalize pot in 1996. Two years later, Alaska, Oregon and Washington legalized the use of medical marijuana.
By 2012, marijuana was made legal in 14 states, including Colorado and Washington which also legalized the use of pot for recreational use.
Where is pot legal for medical and recreational purposes
Currently, 29 states and Washington, D.C. have made pot legal for medical purpose, but depending on the location, there may be different regulations about how it can be used. Some states allow people to grow marijuana at home while others only allow medical marijuana dispensaries.
Patients are able to grow marijuana for medical purposes in Arizona, Massachusetts, Nevada and North Dakota only if they live a certain distance from the nearest dispensary, or if they have a waiver that states they cannot afford to purchase medical marijuana.
According to ProCon.org, a nonprofit organization dedicated to unbiased research on and conversation about controversial topics, nine states and Washington, D.C. have legalized marijuana for medical as well as recreational purposes. Washington, Oregon, Nevada, California, Colorado, Vermont, Massachusetts, Maine and Alaska all allow marijuana for recreational use. Each state has its own set of laws that regulate how much marijuana a person can buy and possess at one time, the type of packaging it needs to be in, taxes and age requirements to buy marijuana legally in the United States.
According to data compiled by ProCon.org, different states have varying stipulations regarding the amount of marijuana a person can possess. In New York, for example, a licensed physician can only prescribe patients with a 30-day supply of non-smokable marijuana products which include capsules, liquids and vape oils. In Massachusetts, on the other hand, a physician can prescribe a 60-day supply of medical marijuana. Take a look at the chart below to see the possession limit for different states:
How to get a marijuana card
Many states in the country have legalized the use of pot for medical purposes. Patients must be diagnosed with an ailment that is on the state’s list of qualifying conditions to use medical marijuana in order to get a medical marijuana card. Because each state may have slightly different requirements to get a card, you can start by checking out a complete list of qualifying medical conditions by state and how to apply for a marijuana card.