The state of Maryland has taken significant steps to improve its cannabis regulations. The state has legalized medical cannabis and has decriminalized possession of small amounts of recreational cannabis.
CBD from Hemp Oil in Maryland
Hemp CBD oil is federally legal in the U.S. Individual state laws, however, are dynamic and some states have and will enact their own laws regulating hemp-derived CBD.
Medical Cannabis in Maryland
Medical cannabiswas legalized in Maryland in 2014 when House Bill 881 was signed into law. Patients must acquire a written certification from a licensed physician and register with the state’s program. Under the law, children who meet their physician’s criteria for treatment can become legal patients in Maryland. The Natalie M. LaPrade Marijuana Commission and the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene are responsible for developing regulations for Cannabis access.
Qualified patients can possess up to 120 grams, of approximately four ounces, at one time, unless a physician makes a special determination that a patient needs more. Medical cannabis is available in forms that can be vaporized (not smoked), or extracts, lotions, ointments, and tinctures.
The law approves the following conditions for medical cannabis:
- Cachexia, Anorexia, or Wasting Syndrome
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Severe or Chronic Pain
- Severe Loss of Appetite
- Severe Nausea
- Severe or Persistent Muscle Spasms
- Any condition that is severe, for which other medical treatments have been ineffective
While medical cannabis in Maryland is technically legal, the state’s medical Cannabis program is still in the development stages and not yet operational. In December 2016, the Maryland Marijuana Commission announced that 102 preliminary licenses were awarded to 102 dispensaries across the state. The companies picked still need to undergo additional review by the state and pass inspections before opening. The program is expected to be up and running sometime in the summer of 2017.
You can find the Maryland Marijuana Commission website here.
Recreational Cannabis in Maryland
Maryland has decriminalized small possession of cannabis. The passing of Senate Bill 364 in 2014 made the possession of less than 10 grams of recreational cannabis for personal use a civil offense that carries no jail time and a maximum fine of $100. However, possession of greater quantities is still a criminal offense. Carrying up to 50 pounds of cannabis is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine. Possession of quantities greater than 50 pounds is a felony in the state. Maryland also imposes minimum mandatory sentences for some cannabis-related offenses.
Cultivation of Cannabis in Maryland
The cultivation of cannabis for personal or medical use is illegal in Maryland. However, in April 2016, Governor Larry Hogan signed House Bill 443, which permits the Department of Agriculture to authorize institutions of higher education to grow hemp for academic research. The bill took effect October 1, 2016.