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Washington Weed Laws Guide For 2021

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Washington Cannabis Laws Guide For 2021

Is Weed Legal in Washington? Who doesn’t love legal weed! Well, this happy state sure does! Washington cannabis laws allow the use of both recreational and medical marijuana. But, the rules differ for each! In this article, we’ll cover all you need to comprehend about the Washington pot laws of 2020.

Washington has legalized both recreational and medical marijuana. However, state law prohibits recreational users from cultivating their own cannabis. As well, when it comes to medical patients who have a recognition card versus those who do not different rules apply.

Washington State Marijuana Laws: Facts About I-502

Initiative Measure No. 502, passed in 2012, immediately approved the following:

  • Production, possession, processing, and personal use of cannabis would be legalized 
  • The Liquor and Cannabis Board of Washington (LCB) would further develop a framework to regulate legal marijuana
  • The Liquor and Cannabis Board of Washington would actively revise all criminal laws against marijuana to accommodate for legalization 

With the legalization of recreational pot, it can be quite difficult to navigate through all the legislatures provided by the state. Fortunately, the Washington weed law, known as Initiative 502 provides an in-depth scheme for both retailers, users, and distributors. Below we have stated and summarized some important sections recreational users and visitors to the state need to understand.

Recreational Cannabis Laws For Washington

Washington recreational weed laws 2020

Under I-502, section 15 people over the age of 21 years old can legally purchase useable marijuana and/or its products from licensed retailers. Under this Washington weed law, an adult 21 years of age, can only purchase and possess:

  • 1 ounce of useable weed;
  • 7 g of cannabis concentrate 
  • 16 ounces of any THC-infused item(in solid form); or 
  • 72 ounces of THC-infused item(in liquid form)

Legal Weed Rules for Recreational Pot users

State laws which apply to recreational weed users need to understand the following rules:

  • Recreational users are not permitted to grow any cannabis plants for personal use.
  • May only legally possess up to 16 ounces of infused THC products in solid form.
  • If using liquid marijuana-infused products, the legal limit is 72 ounces.
  • Recreational weed users can only possess up to 7 g of concentrates. 

Where do you Buy Recreational Weed in Washington?

I-502, section 4 firmly dictates retailers interested in selling marijuana must receive a license to sell legal weed. The license and annual renewal will be monitored by the Liquor and Cannabis Board of Washington. It remains illegal for adults to purchase recreational pot elsewhere. To legally use weed you must purchase it from a licensed retailer. 

Using your Recreational Marijuana in Washington

Washington cannabis laws state that it is illegal for recreational users to consume and use cannabis on public and federal grounds. Specifically, you are not allowed to display and smoke your weed near child care centers, on public transit, libraries, or in public parks. Washington weed laws state that those who wish to use legal weed must do so on their private property.

Washington Medical Marijuana Laws: Limits, Cultivation, and Possession

Washington weed laws can be fairly confusing. Here we have summarized the main possession and cultivation points you need to be aware of.

Washington medical cannabis laws 2020


Washington weed laws applicable to those entered into the authorization database will hold a recognition Medical Marijuana Card. Entry into the database and possession of a recognition card can:

  • Allow patients to grow between 6 to 15 plants of marijuana for personal medical use without any repercussions. 
  • Possess up to 8 ounces (can be authorized to possess up to 16 ounces) of useable cannabis.
  • Can possess up to 48 ounces of infused marijuana products in solid form.
  • Can possess up to 216 ounces of infused THC products in liquid form.
  • Legally able to possess up to 21g of concentrates.
  • Eligible for tax exemption.
  • Warranted arrest protection under Washington cannabis laws.

Washington State Weed Laws: Qualifying Patients Under 18

Washington cannabis laws for patients under 18 emphasize that a minor is not allowed to purchase or grow marijuana on their own. Minors can possess and consume medical marijuana only if their parent or guardian agrees to the medical marijuana program. Parents and guardians act as the primary care-giver to the minor. Only they are permitted to purchase medical marijuana on behalf of a minor.

As we mentioned before, it is illegal to consume marijuana on public and federal grounds. However, if a qualifying patient is a minor they can consume medical marijuana-infused products on school grounds.

What’s a Medical Marijuana Authorization Form?

Washington cannabis laws for medical marijuana state that all patients interested in medical marijuana must complete an authorization form. Created by the Washington Department of Health, these forms allow medical professionals to:

  • State and specify if the patient has a terminal or debilitating illness.
  • Provide evidence that the patient has been assessed by the health professional in person.
  • Importantly, these forms attest that the applying patient has been informed of both the benefits and risks that accompany marijuana use.
  • Finally, the form allows health professionals to express their opinion on the effectiveness of marijuana use on the qualifying patient.

Entering the Medical Marijuana Authorization Database

Once a patient receives an authorization form they may take this for an endorsed outlet to be entered into the database. Only a certified medical marijuana consultant registered by the Department of Health may enter the qualifying patient into the database. The consultant will require applying patients to show evidence of identification and age. Once entered into a database, the qualifying patient will receive a recognition card. For patients above the age of 18, recognition cards are valid for up to a year. While patients below 18, will receive a recognition card valid for up to 6 months.

So, why do you need to meet with a medical marijuana consultant?

  1. Entering the authorization database allows retailers to keep track of medical marijuana in their possession. 
  2. It allows the Department of Revenue to verify that the qualifying patients are able to receive a tax exemption. 
  3. Qualifying patients entered into the database can grow up to 15 plants. Qualifying patients who are not entered into the database can only grow up to 4 plants.
  4. Qualifying patients entered into the database are arrest protected under Washington pot laws.

Obtaining the Washington Medical Marijuana Card

To obtain access to the medical marijuana program in Washington, you will need to visit your local health care professional. Only a state-licensed health care professional can diagnose a Washington resident with a qualifying condition. Washington cannabis laws state that doctors must notify patients of alternative options, other than marijuana when it comes to treating a specific medical condition. Evidence of information for alternative options must be recorded in a patient’s medical record.

Is Marijuana Legal in Washington: Medical Pot Patients

Of the many Washington pot laws, Initiative 692 is perhaps the most important one. Passed in 1998, Initiative 692 allows qualifying patients to purchase, possess, and use medical marijuana. Washington cannabis laws for medical pot dictate that a qualifying patient is one who has a severe, chronic, and/or debilitating health condition.  State law provides a list of qualifying conditions, which have been established in statue and they are as follows:

  • Cancer
  • Crohn’s disease 
  • Epilepsy 
  • HIV
  • Multiple sclerosis 
  • Intractable pain 
  • Glaucoma 
  • Hepatitis C
  • Seizure
  • Diseases that cause anorexia, nausea, voting, muscle spasms, etc

Think Twice before Breaking these Weed Laws.

  • Possessing more than 1 ounce, but less than 40 g of pot is a misdemeanor. If found guilty, you could face a fine of $1,000 and jail-time (24 hours to 90 days).
  • Consuming and using marijuana in public is subjected to a civil penalty. Those guilty could be fined up to $100.
  • Washington weed laws strongly state that selling any amount of cannabis is a felony. That caught selling pot can face a fine of up to $10,000 and incarceration of 5 years. If caught selling to minors, the fine remains the same whilst the jail-time increases to 10 years.
  • Washington state law prohibits the cultivation of cannabis. Under state law, if users cultivate their own cannabis they could face up to 5 years in prison and a fine of $10,000

Medical Marijuana Patients not in the Database

Washington weed laws application to qualifying patients who have not been entered into the authorization database. These patients will not receive a recognition card and thus:

  • Can only grow up to 4 cannabis plants for medical use.
  • May only possess up to 6 ounces of useable cannabis plants.
  • Legally can possess a limit of 16 ounces THC-infused edibles in solid form.
  • May legally possess up to 72 ounces of THC-infused in liquid form. 
  • Possess no more than 7 g of concentrate.
  • These patients are not eligible for sales-tax relief. 
  • Importantly, those without a recognition card do not receive any further protections. If in violation of the law, they are provided with an affirmative defense to charges. 

Legal Weed Across USA: 3 States Where Marijuana is Legal

  1. Good Ole Colorada! This state has not only legalized both recreational and medical marijuana. But, it also produces some of the finest marijuana out there.
  2. The state with the best weather, Oregon: This state has legalized both recreational and medical marijuana. In fact, this state has some of the best growing conditions for cannabis, so much so, that there is an excess in cannabis.
  3. Maine pot laws: Maine has legalized both recreational and medical marijuana. Unlike Washington, citizens of Maine are permitted to grow their own cannabis for recreational use.

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