Yo, my name is Dan and I know y’all been wondering if weed is legal in Virginia. I mean, who wouldn’t wanna know if they can light up without getting in trouble with the law, am I right? Whether you’re using it for medical or recreational purposes, it’s important to know what’s good and what’s not when it comes to cannabis in the Old Dominion.
Let me tell you, Virginia may be old, but it ain’t that uptight when it comes to the sticky icky. Back in the mid-90s, the Virginia General Assembly was all about tightening the laws on weed. But they did add a provision that allowed the use and distribution of marijuana for cancer and glaucoma patients. And in 2015, Governor Terry McAuliffe signed SB 1235 and HB 1445, which made it legal to possess CBD and THC-A oil for qualified patients.
Fast forward to 2018, the Virginia State Board of Pharmacy gave the green light for five companies to open medical cannabis dispensaries across the state. And just last year in August, the first medical dispensary finally became operational. That makes Virginia the 34th state with an effective medical cannabis program.
So, is weed legal in Virginia? Hell yeah it is! And that goes for both medical and recreational use. But hold up, there are still rules and regulations you gotta follow if you don’t wanna end up in some serious trouble.
Alright, let’s talk about what’s allowed when it comes to weed in Virginia.
If you’re 21 or older, you can carry up to one ounce of marijuana.
You can grow up to four plants at home as long as it’s not visible from the street and not accessible to anyone under 21.
You can smoke weed in your own home or on private property.
You can share up to an ounce of marijuana with others as long as no money is exchanged.
Now let’s get into what you can’t do when it comes to weed.
Anyone under 21 cannot possess, consume, or purchase any form of marijuana.
You can’t have more than one ounce of weed.
Selling, distributing, or possessing any amount of marijuana is illegal.
You can’t smoke weed in public or while driving (even if you’re parked).
Having an open container of weed (without the original sealed container) while driving is also illegal.
You can’t have weed on school grounds.
If you get caught breaking any of those rules above, you’ll be facing fines and penalties depending on how severe or how much weed you have on you. Here’s what could happen if you get caught with weed illegally:
If you have more than one ounce but less than four ounces of marijuana, you could face a civil penalty of up to $25.
Having more than four ounces but less than one pound of weed is a Class 3 misdemeanor for your first offense. For your second offense, it becomes a Class 2 misdemeanor.
Possessing more than one pound of weed is a felony which could mean jail time from one year up to ten years and/or a fine up to $250K.
If you’re growing more than four plants per household, there will also be a penalty depending on how many plants over the limit you have.
If you’re using marijuana for medical purposes, then you’re gonna need a medical marijuana card. The first step is finding a registered practitioner who can give you a valid written certification.
Once that’s done, head over to https://www.license.dhp.virginia.gov/apply/ to start your registration process. If this is your first time registering, click on “Initial Registration” and choose “Pharmaceutical Processing-Cannabis Oil” under “Obtained By.” From there, select “Cannabis Oil – Patient” or “Cannabis Oil – Parent/Guardian” depending on who needs the card. Fill out the rest of the application and pay the fees ($50 for patients and $25 for parents/guardians).
Submit photocopies of your written certification for cannabis products from your registered practitioner, proof of identity and residency (for both patient and guardian/parent), government-issued ID or tax receipt, and valid Virginia driver’s license. Wait at least 60 business days for processing.
The Bottom Line
Alright my friends, that’s everything you need to know about weed in Virginia. Although it’s legal now, there are still rules you need to follow if you don’t want any trouble with law enforcement. And if you’re using weed for medical purposes, make sure you get your medical marijuana card so you can blaze without worry.