Ever wonder if weed is legal in West Virginia? Here’s everything you need to know about West Virginia’s marijuana laws and other places to find cannabis around West Virginia in 2020.
Is Weed legal in West Virginia?
West Virginia has some of the harshest penalties in the country for marijuana use and possession. In West Virginia, cannabis is a schedule 1 illicit substance with no medical value and a high possibility of impairment and misuse. That being said, marijuana is illegal in the state. If you’re caught possessing, selling, or growing cannabis, severe penalties may incur.
While cannabis is illegal, the state does have a medical marijuana program. However, the program is not yet operational even though the bill was passed back in 2016. There are still a few penalties associated with both possession, cultivation, and sale in the state. Here’s a quick breakdown of those penalties before we dive into West Virginia’s medical marijuana program.
– Any amount: Misdemeanor- 90 days to 6 months in jail – $1,000 fine
– Any amount: Felony – 1 year in jail minimum, up to 5 years – $15,000 fine
– Trafficking marijuana into West Virginia: Felony – 1 year in jail minimum, up to 5 years – $15,000 fine
– Cultivation will be punished based upon the weight of the plants found as either simple possession or as possession with the intent to distribute, which is a felony punishable by no less than 1 year, and no more than 5 years, imprisonment and a fine of no more than $15,000.
– Selling to a minor or within 1000 ft of a school – Felony – 2 years in jail minimum – no fine
– Penalties for hash and concentrates are the same as for marijuana.
– Attempts to adulterate drug screening test – Misdemeanor- 1 year in jail – $10,000 fine
– Paraphernalia possession: Misdemeanor – 6 months in jail minimum, up to 1 year – $5,000 fine
– Everything involved in the production and transportation processes of controlled substances is liable to be forfeited.
– Mandatory driver’s license revocation for any felony offense when a motor vehicle is used in its commission.
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Medical marijuana in West Virginia
Legislature for a medical marijuana program was passed in West Virginia in 2016. However, it’s still not ready yet. Claims by their government stated that sales would begin July 1st 2019, though officials say they’re still years away from the first sale due to roadblocks put in place by banks and federal laws. They’re also really dragging their feet on licensing laws for both patients and vendors.
This essentially means that the state doesn’t have any legal marijuana whatsoever. While a medical marijuana program is on the horizon, we still don’t know when the laws will officially take place and medical marijuana sales can begin.
Regardless, we can still know the rules for when it eventually takes effect. In order to qualify for medical marijuana in West Virginia, you must have a qualifying condition, a doctor’s recommendation, and a medical marijuana card from the state. Qualifying medical conditions include:
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
- Crohn’s disease
- Huntington’s disease
- Intractable seizures
- Multiple sclerosis
- Neuropathies (chronic nerve pain)
- Parkinson’s disease
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Severe chronic or intractable pain
- Spinal cord damage
- Sickle cell anemia.
- Terminal illness
If you have one of these qualifying medical conditions, you will be permitted to possess a “30 day supply” of cannabis-infused products, but further specifics are not yet available since the program hasn’t taken effect. We do know that you can’t possess actual marijuana flowers and are instead limited to CBD products in the forms of pills, oils, topicals, patches or tinctures.
All in all, West Virginia has no form of legal marijuana through the cannabis legislature has been passed. The law will prevent medical patients from cultivating their own marijuana and limits them to concentrated cannabis with low percentages of THC. If and when the state begins marijuana sales, they must be made from state-licensed dispensaries by yourself or a caregiver.
Medical Marijuana Update in West Virginia
Legislative leaders recently pulled the medical marijuana bill off its calendar, stirring conflicts to the medical marijuana scene in the state. The 12-8 decision has completely put the medical cannabis act on the ground, although it was initially approved last 2017.
The medical marijuana bill allows patients, parents, and legal guardians to acquire a medical marijuana card in Virginia, given they have a written certification issued by a registered practitioner. The written certification is not accepted as it doesn’t satisfy the conditions for an affirmative defense.
To find a Board of Pharmacy-registered physician, Virginia Norml provides a list of practitioners within the state. Only these practitioners can issue the certification for medical marijuana.
In light of the recent legislative decision, more changes in medical marijuana in West Virginia will occur. The restrictions on who can hold licenses is still under question.
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