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Medical Marijuana Sales in Pennsylvania Begin: What You Should Know

16 Mar 2018, by Brandy Benefield in Drug Crimes

Written by Timothy Czekaj

In April 2016, Governor Tom Wolf of Pennsylvania signed Act 16, a medical marijuana program, into law. This law enables physicians to recommend marijuana to treat certain conditions in registered patients. Finally, almost two years later, there are medical marijuana dispensaries up and running in Pennsylvania. Now that some cannabis is legal in the state, you need to know how and when you can obtain it, and when it is still off limits.

If you find yourself in trouble with the law in regard to marijuana, contact a drug crime lawyer at Czekaj Law, LLC as soon as you can. Call (717) 275-9770 or use the online form to schedule a free and confidential case consultation.

What Medical Marijuana May Be Used to Treat

Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana program allows the drug to be used for 17 conditions:

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • Cancer
  • Epilepsy
  • Intractable seizures
  • PTSD
  • Severe chronic or intractable pain
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
  • Multiple sclerosis (MS)
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Neuropathies
  • Huntington’s disease
  • Glaucoma
  • Sickle cell anemia
  • Damaged nervous tissue of the spinal cord

Who Can Purchase Marijuana?

To be able to buy marijuana, you must have a qualifying condition. Then you must see a registered physician who is able to certify your condition, and that you may benefit from marijuana. Finally, you must register with the Department of Health and obtain a medical marijuana card. It takes multiple steps before you can go to a dispensary and buy a product that may help you treat or manage your condition.

Where You Can Buy Marijuana?

As of early 2018, there are six medical marijuana dispensaries and only one grower-processor up and operating. This is not much, and there have been reports that multiple dispensaries have run out of product. However, the industry will expand throughout the rest of the year and into 2019. The state initially approved 12 grower-processors that are in the process of getting ready to ship products by the end of March. When the first stage of the program is complete, there will be 51 dispensaries around the state.

The Cost of Medical Marijuana

Marijuana products are sold in a range of prices, from as little as $20, up to $100. Your health insurance will not cover medical marijuana like it does other prescriptions. You will have to pay for this treatment entirely on your own. How much you are forced to spend depends on the products you buy and how much of the substance you need to manage your condition.

What You Cannot Do with Marijuana in Pennsylvania

Recreational marijuana is still entirely illegal in Pennsylvania. If you are caught with marijuana and you do not have a valid medical marijuana card, expect to be charged with a crime.

Even if you are a medical marijuana patient, there is a lot you cannot do. Prohibited acts include:

  • Give marijuana to anyone
  • Sell marijuana to anyone
  • Grow one or more marijuana plants
  • Use whole-plant or dried leaf marijuana
  • Smoke marijuana
  • Use marijuana in public
  • Use marijuana at work

Have You Been Charged with a Crime?

If you have been charged with a marijuana-related crime, you should contact a lawyer from Czekaj Law, LLC immediately. Whether or not you are a medical marijuana patient, you need to mount a strong defense. An attorney may be able to have the charges dropped or reduced. To learn more about defending against a drug crime in Pennsylvania, contact us at (717) 275-9770 .