New York Marijuana and Decriminalization Laws (2019)


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New York marijuana laws have changed a bit Governor Andrew Cuomo’s signature finalized the legalization of health-related marijuana in New York in 2014. The legislature also lately pushed for the legalization of recreational weed but failed to meet that target. Though cannabis has been decriminalized, the only way to access legal weed is to participate in New York’s health-related marijuana system. Right here are New York’s marijuana laws.

Marijuana is Decriminalized, but Not Legal

Legislative efforts to regulate recreational cannabis in New York failed in 2019. In June, lawmakers took the much less controversial route of decriminalization. The decriminalization law tends to make the following amendments to the New York penal code:

  • Initial-time offense of unlawful possession of marijuana can be punishable by a maximum fine of $150. Subsequent offenses are extra high-priced and can outcome in a maximum of 15 days of jail time by the third offense.
  • Public consumption of cannabis or possession of extra than an ounce of concentrates is punishable only by a fine of no extra than $200.
  • Marijuana-connected convictions that would be classified as “violations” can be expunged retroactively and from now on.
  • The term “smoking” now consists of cannabis smoking. This signifies that smoking cannabis is prohibited wherever smoking tobacco is prohibited.

In quick, applying, promoting, and increasing cannabis all stay illegal. Possession of tiny amounts is viewed as a violation and will not outcome in jail time unless a defendant is convicted for the third time.

The expungement provision of the law could be its most substantial function. In the language of the law, the amendment tends to make “New York penal law fairer and extra equitable in the administration of marijuana enforcement” and avoids “the disparate racial and ethnic influence noticed in present marihuana enforcement.”

On the other hand, recreational cannabis use remains illegal. The only way to legally access cannabis is to participate in New York’s health-related marijuana system.

Qualifying Debilitating Healthcare Circumstances

Sufferers could be eligible to participate in New York’s health-related marijuana system if they have one particular or extra of the following diagnoses:

  • Cancer
  • HIV
  • AIDS
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
  • Parkinson’s illness
  • Several sclerosis
  • Spinal cord injury with spasticity
  • Epilepsy
  • Inflammatory bowel illness
  • Neuropathy
  • Huntington’s illness
  • Post-traumatic strain disorder
  • Chronic discomfort
  • Discomfort that degrades overall health and functional capability as an option to opioid use or substance use disorder

The above diagnoses ought to also be accompanied by one particular or extra of the following circumstances:

  • Cachexia or wasting syndrome
  • Serious or chronic discomfort
  • Serious nausea
  • Seizures
  • Serious persistent muscle spasms
  • Post-traumatic strain disorder
  • Opioid use disorder

The Commissioner of Well being could add circumstances to this list. Extra circumstances could also be added via legislation.

Applying for A Healthcare Marijuana Card in New York

In order to acquire a registry identification card, individuals ought to do the following:

  • Acquire certification for health-related marijuana from a registered practitioner. Sufferers can ask their treating practitioner if cannabis is an suitable remedy for their situation. If their present treating practitioner is not registered with the state of New York to concern certifications for health-related marijuana, the patient can either ask their practitioner to register or discover a registered patient applying this list.
  • Register on-line. Sufferers can comply with the directions offered by the Division of Well being to submit their application on-line.  The law calls for a $50 registration charge, but the Division of Well being is presently waiving that charge for all individuals and caregivers.

Sufferers will be issued a short-term registry card that can be applied along with a government-issued photo ID till the registry identification card is delivered by mail.

Possession and Buying Limits

Sufferers ought to show their registry identification card in order to make any purchases from a licensed health-related marijuana dispensary, the only sort of legal facility promoting weed in New York. Sufferers can discover a list of registered dispensaries right here.

The patient’s practitioner ought to outline the type of cannabis, the authorized item brand, the administration technique, and any other limits on the certification. The practitioner can also suggest a dosage limit, but this is not needed. On the other hand, dispensaries can not sell extra than 30 days-worth of cannabis to a patient at a time. The 30 days-limit is determined by the practitioner.


The Well being Commissioner has authorized the following types of cannabis for consumption:

  • Capsules, tablets, and lozenges
  • Liquid and oil preparations for vaporizing or oral administration
  • Ground flower preparations (not for smoking)
  • Topicals
  • Transdermal patches

Beneath present law, smoking cannabis is not permitted. Edibles are also not permitted.

The public consumption of cannabis is prohibited. According to the law, public places contain:

  • Areas of employment
  • Bars
  • Foodservice establishments
  • Enclosed indoor places open to the public containing a swimming pool
  • Public signifies of transportation
  • Ticketing, boarding, and waiting places in public transportation terminals
  • Youth centers and facilities for detention
  • Any childcare facility
  • Group residences for young children
  • Public institutions for young children
  • Residential remedy facilities for young children
  • All public and private colleges
  • Common hospitals and residential overall health care facilities
  • Industrial establishments
  • Indoor arenas
  • Zoos
  • Bingo facilities

Sufferers can consume cannabis in a private residence as extended as it is authorized by the home owner.

Cannabis Transport and Delivery

Delivery solutions are readily available via the registered dispensaries. Not all dispensaries could present delivery solutions, so contact the organization you are interested in acquiring from to discover out if you can have your health-related marijuana delivered to you.

Driving Beneath the Influence

Consuming cannabis though in a private or public motor automobile irrespective of whether driving or in a parking lot is prohibited.

Driving though below the influence of cannabis is illegal. Law enforcement officers will use observation and field tests to figure out impairment. Penalties for driving below the influence of marijuana are the very same as they are for driving below the influence of alcohol or other scheduled drugs.

Exporting Cannabis

State and Federal law prohibit the export of cannabis across state lines. If you are leaving the state, leave your pot at residence.

Private Cultivation

Sufferers can not develop their personal cannabis. The only legal way to acquire cannabis is to buy it from a licensed dispensary.


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