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Montana Medical Marijuana Law

Residents of Montana who meet the state’s requirements are issued medical marijuana cards that allow them to possess cannabis and use it to treat the symptoms of serious medical conditions. These illnesses can include cachexia, multiple sclerosis, peripheral neuropathy, glaucoma, intractable seizure disorders, and more. For those dealing with such crippling conditions, marijuana can improve functioning and overall quality of life.

Holders of medical marijuana cards are permitted by state law to buy safe, effective products that were grown according to high standards. To help you make the best choices for your health, dispensary purchases are clearly labeled with THC content, strain information, and suggested dosages.

Under the Montana Medical Marijuana Program, the state will also permit the sale of marijuana for recreational (or adult-use) purposes starting in 2022. While it is now legal for all residents of Montana to possess cannabis, cardholders have more access to dispensaries and a wider variety of marijuana.

The background of Montana’s marijuana laws, relevant statutes, and frequently asked queries by current and potential medical marijuana patients are all covered in this article. You can make the most of your medical marijuana use if you are cognizant of its legal status and the rights of cardholders.

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Montana Medical Marijuana Law History

In 2004, a ballot initiative to legalize marijuana was approved by Montanans, passing the Montana Medical Marijuana Allowance with 62% of the vote. The law made it legal for certain patients to buy, use, and cultivate marijuana to treat their symptoms.

In 2011, the majority of the medical marijuana laws in Montana were repealed. This contentious choice disregarded the preferences of the majority of voters. The bill was fiercely opposed by patient advocates, who in 2016 appealed the case to the Montana State Supreme Court.

The repeal was rejected by the judges. Fortunately, the medical marijuana program was expanded by Montanans who returned to the polls in that very same year. The state’s list of accepted conditions now includes chronic pain and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Later, in order to strengthen patient protection, the governor established regulations for marijuana manufacturers and farmers that tightened oversight and quality standards. In the end, the state increased the tax on medical marijuana to 4% and did away with the requirement that patients only purchase their medicine from one dispensary.

All citizens of Montana have been able to legally buy marijuana products from dispensaries since January 1, 2022. Legislators will probably update the medical program to preserve and strengthen patient access as the adult-use program expands.

Marijuana Possession Laws in Montana

All adults in Montana over the age of 21 are allowed to possess up to an ounce of marijuana flower, 800 mg of THC in edibles, or 8 grams or 8 mL of THC in concentrate. Any combination of product types is acceptable as long as the sum does not go over the 1-ounce equivalent limit.

Possession of up to 2 ounces of marijuana is a civil infraction punishable by a $200 fine regardless of patient status. A felony for carrying more than 2 ounces is punishable by up to 5 years in prison and $45,000 in fines.

Montana Public Consumption Laws

Despite the state’s legalization of marijuana, neither cardholders nor recreational users are permitted to use the drug in public in Montana. Due to the ongoing federal prohibition of cannabis, using it on federal property or in national parks may subject you to additional penalties.

Marijuana use is permitted in private residences, including your home. Still, to make sure that your landlord does not have a formal policy against marijuana use, check your lease or rental agreement. A $50 fine is levied as punishment for public consumption.

Montana Cannabis DUI Laws

In Montana, it is illegal to operate a vehicle while high on marijuana. Police officers have the authority to pull over vehicles when they suspect that the driver is intoxicated. They can take a driver to a hospital for blood testing if they think they are under the influence of cannabis, including medical cannabis. DUI is defined as a THC level of 5 ng/ml or more.

First-time offenders face fines between $300 and $1,000 and sentences ranging from one day to six months in jail. These penalties grow steeper as the offender’s crimes accumulate.

Applying for a Montana Medical Marijuana Card?

The state’s online application portal must be used to submit all applications to the Montana Medical Marijuana Registry. A medical marijuana card may only be obtained by those who have been diagnosed with a qualifying condition that has been approved by the state.

First, create an account by filling out the demographic data. A physician’s statement recommending medical marijuana can then be obtained by going to a licensed Montana healthcare professional. You must submit your application less than 60 days after your doctor signs the form.

The debilitating condition and home cultivation details that the doctor filled out on your statement can be added to your online application. Your paper form must correspond to the online form that you submit.

The doctor’s statement, a passport-style photo, and your Montana driver’s license or another form of residency proof will all need to be uploaded digitally next. The $20 application fee can also be paid with a credit card, debit card, or an ACH.

The Sanctuary can help you navigate the state’s online system and provide advice on the program’s requirements. Our knowledgeable staff can put you in touch with a compassionate Montana medical marijuana doctor and help you gather the necessary paperwork so you can submit a strong application.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. A 2020 ballot initiative in Montana saw the legalization of marijuana for recreational use. Following the state’s establishment of the program, sales started on January 1, 2022.

You are allowed to have up to 1 ounce of cannabis flower that you bought from a recognized dispensary. Retailers of marijuana can be found in Montana. They offer flowers, concentrates, vape cartridges, topicals, edibles, transdermal patches, capsules, and suppositories.

THC cap requirements apply to recreational products. The maximum THC content for flowers is 35%, for topicals it is 6%, and for edibles it is 800 mg. THC limits are not applicable to medical products. When shopping, be sure to inquire about each dispensary’s medical cannabis menu.

More than 2 ounces of marijuana are illegal to own in Montana. You must only use your marijuana for private purposes. Cannabis of the medical grade can only be bought by patients with valid medical marijuana cards.

There is a one-ounce limit on marijuana possession. Each month, cardholders can buy 5 ounces of flower. However, your doctor may set a higher limit for you, such as 8 ounces.

While cardholders are free to shop at any dispensary, some places only accept medical marijuana patients. Medical purchases are subject to a 4% tax, whereas recreational purchases are subject to a 20% tax.

While non-cardholders are only allowed to grow two mature plants, registered patients are allowed to grow up to four seedlings and four mature plants. The crops cannot be exposed to the public. If you rent or lease, you must receive permission from your property’s owner to cultivate cannabis. Possession of excess cannabis plants carries a civil penalty.

No, medical marijuana dispensaries are only open to residents of Montana who have obtained cards. Before your trip, research the policies of the state you’ll be visiting if you have a Montana credit card. As a cardholder, you might be permitted to make purchases.

Remember, marijuana is still illegal under federal law, so carrying any marijuana across state lines is prohibited, regardless of your status as a patient.

Yes. When patients apply for medical marijuana cards in Montana, there are no background checks performed on them. A felony, however, will prevent you from working as a caregiver for another medical marijuana patient.