Michael A. Gottlieb, P.A. - Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense Lawyer

What to know about Florida's marijuana laws

Marijuana use is becoming an ever-increasing complex issue throughout the United States. Florida has particularly complicated laws about who can use marijuana and what the penalties are. 

While marijuana may be legal for recreational use in other states, it is still illegal in Florida. However, under certain circumstances, marijuana is legal as long as it is for medicinal purposes. Florida citizens need to be cognizant of new and changing laws. 

What can you use marijuana for in Florida?

If police find marijuana on a Floridian citizen, then that person needs to provide proof of prescription. As of this writing, doctors can prescribe marijuana for the following health conditions. 

  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Crohn's disease
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Glaucoma
  • Epilepsy
  • Cancer
  • Positive for HIV

In 2016, Florida voters overwhelmingly approved the passage of Amendment 2. This provision was formally signed into law in 2017, and it expanded what conditions for which patients could get a marijuana prescription. 

What are the penalties for possessing marijuana in Florida without a prescription?

A person caught carrying illegal marijuana will face various penalties based on several factors. Some of the factors include the amount of marijuana found on a person as well as whether there was any intent to sell. It is a misdemeanor to possess a small amount of marijuana, which comes down to less than 20 grams. With a misdemeanor charge, a person could be facing a $1,000 fine and/or a maximum of one year of incarceration. 

If law enforcement finds more than 20 grams but less than 25 pounds, the penalty can increase to up to $5,000 while the incarceration sentence can go up to five years. Possessing or selling any amount more than 25 pounds is a felony. Additional factors affect what sentences people possessing illegal marijuana would face. 

Things may change in the future regarding marijuana in Florida. For the time being, people should avoid using marijuana for recreational use in the state.

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