To begin with, marijuana use and possession are both illegal in Pennsylvania to some extent. Marijuana is classified as a schedule I controlled substance under US federal law. However, states across the country have amended their laws to allow for its limited use.
To understand marijuana law, you must first understand the distinction between decriminalization and legalization. A schedule-one drug is one that has the potential for abuse for reasons other than medical necessity.
Most recreational marijuana users seek a marijuana moment, which is not permitted under state law. Experts are unsure whether the drug will help people with multiple sclerosis.
Here’s what you need to know about marijuana under Pennsylvania law.
Marijuana Law Pennsylvania on Possession
The law governing the possession of this drug varies depending on where you live in Pennsylvania. In Philadelphia, for example, possessing an ounce of recreational marijuana is legal. Pennsylvania law does not allow everyone to use medical marijuana. Other parts of the state consider carrying any amount of cannabis to be a crime.
According to Pennsylvanian law, anyone carrying approximately 30 milligrams of the drug faces a misdemeanor charge. The offense means you face 30 days or a 500-dollar fine.
A judge may be lenient on the first offense of marijuana possession or offer you a year of probation instead. If you have more than 30 milligrams of the drug on you, the game changes.
Possession of more than this amount will mean that you face jail time of up to a year. It may also include a fine of not less than 5,000 dollars, though this is not always the case. Getting a proverbial slap on the wrist after the first offense guarantees you a steeper sentence if you are found guilty of possession again.
Recreational Marijuana and Operating Driving Equipment
Even if the law does not forbid you, it is a reasonable argument that driving while intoxicated is a bad idea. The same is true in Pennsylvania, which has strict laws prohibiting the practice. Most people believe that this only applies to intoxication from alcohol. It includes drugs such as marijuana in Pennsylvania.
When a police officer stops you on suspicion of driving under the influence of cannabis, they will order a blood test from a hospital.
Under Pennsylvanian state law, impairment from the THC ingredient in marijuana is limited to one nanogram per millimeter of blood. This drug can stay in your system for weeks or months after you take it. This means that any positive test result during this time period may result in an arrest under Pennsylvania law.
Possession With the Intent to Sell
The charges, in this case, will be severe, as you face a charge of intent to sell and distribute marijuana. They can view it as a misdemeanor offense with the possibility of felony charges and, as a result, severe penalties.
In Pennsylvania, you should be aware that this is one of the most serious marijuana offenses. Selling up to 30 milligrams of the drug carries the same penalties as possessing it.
Anything above this limit results in felony charges with severe penalties. If the weight is less than two pounds, you could face a ten-year prison sentence. If it is around 1,000 pounds, you will face jail time as well as a $10,000 fine. Anyone selling marijuana to minors faces harsher penalties under state law.
Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Laws
The drug is only legal in Pennsylvania under the state’s medical marijuana program. The law, however, prohibits anyone from purchasing, selling, or possessing the drug under the guise of medical use. Its goal is to make marijuana treatment available to people suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, glaucoma, and cancer.
A medical marijuana ID card is required to sell, buy, or use medical marijuana. This is only available in Pennsylvania through the medical marijuana registry. Purchases of legal drugs can only be made from licensed medical cannabis dispensaries. The amount you can buy as a medical marijuana ID card holder is also limited by law. The legalization of carrying a 30-day supply of cannabis for a patient in need is limited.
Federal Law on Cultivation of Marijuana
Growing cannabis plants is punishable by harsh penalties in the state of Pennsylvania. Having 10 to 20 plants can result in a year in prison. Furthermore, you may be required to pay the state for all proceedings and legal fees, as well as a hefty fine. The jail sentence and fines are both doubled for repeat offenders.
If your cannabis plants are more than 21 years old but less than 50, you will be sentenced to three years in prison. You may also be required to pay a 15,000-dollar fine, or an amount comparable to the legal fee plus the state’s effort in the case. The fines and sentences for the lesser cannabis cultivation offense are doubled for a repeat offense. If you have more than 50 plants, you will be sentenced to five years in prison. It will include a $50,000 fine or an amount equal to the cost of the indictment.
Apart from cannabis, it is illegal to possess marijuana paraphernalia. According to state law, the term refers to anything pertaining to cannabis cultivation, manufacturing, converting, preparing, packing, storing, ingesting, injecting, inhaling, or otherwise. Penalties under this statute include a year in prison and a 25,000-dollar fine.
This law is quite stiff in comparison to other states in America.
The Legality of Hemp-Derived CBD
Some forms of CBD are legal in Pennsylvania, while others are not. This topic is fraught with controversy, but the state stands by its law. CBD derived from hemp is legal to use and possess. However, the same extract derived from cannabis is illegal.
Pennsylvania allows businesses to legally cultivate hemp. Despite their similarities, marijuana and hemp are not the same. The legality of hemp is determined by the concentration of THC, according to state law. The acceptable minimum is less than 0.3 percent.
Are You Looking for Defense Against Marijuana Offenses?
If you are suspected of or charged with a marijuana-related offense in Pennsylvania, contact Wayland Law Group. We are world-class, and we are ready to hear your plea and support you in your case. Our headquarters are in McKees Rocks, Pennsylvania. Alternatively, you can reach us at (412) 710-0013 for the best legal services.