NC Cannabis and Marijuana Laws

Most states in the Union allow medical or recreational use of cannabis, and many allow both. However, that is not the case in the Tarheel State. There is a limited medical marijuana law, but that’s it. Legislators periodically introduce bills on this issue, and some bear watching. But for most purposes, marijuana is still illegal in North Carolina.

Fortunately, North Carolina has partially decriminalized marijuana possession of half an ounce or less. This offense is a non-jailable misdemeanor, which could mean a fine of up to $200.

That minor drug possession penalty is good news for people with a few joints, but penalties quickly accelerate. Possession of half an ounce to an ounce and a half is punishable by a maximum jail sentence of 45 days and a fine of up to $1,000. In other words, if police catch you smoking a joint, it’s probably a fine. If they find your stash, you could be facing jail time.

Next, possession of more than one and a half ounces but less than ten pounds is a Class I felony, which carries a maximum sentence of twelve months. Furthermore, the sale of 10 pounds or less of marijuana is a Class I felony. Cultivation of under ten pounds is also a Class I felony.

Keep in mind, medical cannabis is available in some cases. Patients with intractable epilepsy may possess and use hemp extracts which have less than 0.9 percent THC and at least five percent CBD. THC produces the “high” commonly associated with marijuana consumption, and CBD has some medicinal properties.

It is illegal to sell medicinal marijuana in this state. So, qualified patients must buy it in a state which allows out-of-state patients. Because this medical requirement is so restrictive, North Carolina isn’t considered to have legalized medical cannabis.

If you have been arrested for marijuana possession, contact the experienced Raleigh drug crime lawyers at Sandman, Finn & Fitzhugh, Attorneys at Law, today. Fill out the form to the right or call us at (919) 887-8040.