Every few months or so it seems that we hear news of another state in the U.S. either decriminalizing marijuana or passing a medical marijuana bill. One such state that has hopped on this “bandwagon” is Missouri. Missouri enacted partial decriminalization that didn’t take effect until January 2017 and in November 2018, Missouri residents approved with 66% of the vote a ballot measure (Amendment 2) to legalize the medical use of cannabis. However, just because medical use has been legalized there is partial decriminalization of marijuana (cannabis) possession does not mean that it is legal. In fact, Missouri remains one of the strictest states when it comes to illegal drugs which still includes cannabis. Understanding the current laws in Missouri in relation to cannabis, from medical marijuana use to the partial decriminalization laws, can help you to avoid legal action in the future.
If you are facing criminal charges for marijuana, Missouri Legal can help. We have helped hundreds of clients in Springfield and the surrounding areas fight similar charges. Call our illegal drug attorneys in Springfield today to get the legal help you need. Read on for more information about the cannabis laws in Missouri.
Medical Marijuana in Missouri
At the time this article is being written The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services has posted finalized rules for persons looking to make or sell medical marijuana products. These rules took effect on June 3, 2019. These rules are not permanent and will remain in effect until February 2020 where they may be altered if necessary. With this in mind let’s take a look at the current medical marijuana laws in Missouri.
Who Qualifies To Use Medical Marijuana
According to information that can be found on NORML the following are considered qualifying conditions for people to legally use medical marijuana:
- Alzheimer’s disease (agitation related to)
- Any terminal illness
- Crohn’s disease
- Chronic pain/neuropathy
- Hepatitis C
- HIV/AIDS or cachexia or wasting syndrome
- Huntington’s disease
- Intractable migraines
- Lou Gehrig’s disease
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Opioid substitution
- Parkinson’s disease
- PTSD or other “debilitating psychiatric disorders”
- Tourette syndrome
- Sickle cell anemia
- Any “other chronic, debilitating or other medical condition” that may be alleviated by marijuana “in the professional judgment of a physician”
If approved, the following are legal possession limits and home cultivation regulations:
- A person can purchase up to four ounces per 30 days. The Department of health may potentially set limits on this amount, “provided that the limit is not less than a 60 day supply”.
- Additionally, a medical marijuana patient may have up to six flowering plants. Cultivation must take place in a closed and locked facility, and he or she must obtain an identification card from the Department of Health. If you are an eligible medical marijuana card holder and are facing illegal drug charges, a drug possession attorney in Springfield will be able to help you with your case.
In Missouri, CBD oil is legalized to treat patients with epilepsy who suffer from persistent seizures. The concentration that is currently legal is hemp extract that contains at least 5% CBD, but no more than .3% of THC. To be eligible, a neurologist must determine that the epilepsy does not respond to at least three other treatment options before prescribing CBD.
In Missouri, the decriminalization of marijuana extends as far as a first-time offense of possession of ten grams and paraphernalia. What this means is that if it is you are a first time offender (no priors) you will not face the potential penalty of jail time or a conviction on your permanent record if you are found to be in possession of cannabis in an amount of 10 grams or less. You will, in most cases, be charged a fine not to exceed $500.
However, other infractions such as possession of more than 10 grams, selling, tracking or cultivating are all still punishable by jail time and high fines. For all other marijuana-related offenses that carry criminal penalties, you’ll want to hire a Springfield illegal drug attorney to assist you in getting the charges reduced or dropped entirely. Missouri has some of the steepest penalties for illegal drug crimes; the following are the penalties you could potentially face if charged and convicted of either possession of marijuana or marijuana-related drug paraphernalia* :
Possession of Marijuana
- Second-time offenders with up to 10 grams or first-time offenders in possession of 10 grams to 35 grams could face up to one year in jail and up to $2,000 in fines.
- Persons caught in possession of 35 grams up to 30 kilograms will be charged with a felony and could potentially face up to seven years in prison and fines up to $10,000.
- Second-time offenders and persons who unlawfully manufacture paraphernalia can face up to one year in jail and fines not to exceed $2,000.
- If the paraphernalia is for commercial purposes it is considered a felony. Circumstances, amount and the person’s record will all factor into the degree of a felony and the penalties.
*Selling, Trafficking, Distributing or Cultivating Cannabis are all considered felony crimes. Depending on the circumstances of the crime, the amount, and the person’s criminal record will all influence the degree of a felony and the penalties that will be carried out.
If you are facing criminal charges for marijuana or another illegal substance, contact Missouri Legal today. Our illegal drug attorneys in Springfield offer free consultations where we will offer legal advice on what the best course of action is for your situation.