Here are a few websites regarding marijuana and its current legal developments:
For Patients - Full article here!
Is my medical marijuana recommendation still valid?
Yes. Any currently issued medical marijuana recommendations will remain valid until the expiration date listed on the recommendation. However, you will be subject to certain restrictions until you renew your recommendation and join the Washington State Patient Registry. With a previously-issued recommendation, you may:
• Grow up to four (4) plants in your domicile for personal medical use
• Possess up to six (6) ounces of usable cannabis in your domicile
How long is my medical marijuana authorization valid for?
Authorizations must expire in one (1) year for adult patients and six months for patients under the age of 18.
Do I need to be registered with Washington's medical marijuana authorization database?
Yes.If you visit your physician to renew your medical marijuana authorization, your physician is required to enter your information into a Washington State authorization database. Patients may also visit a retail establishment holding a medical marijuana authorization and ask to see the medical marijuana consultant on staff who will enter your information into the database, take your picture, and create a medical marijuana recognition card for you.
Once you have been entered into the database, you may purchase cannabis at any retail cannabis outlet holding a medical marijuana authorization. You may purchase any combination of the following:
• Forty eight (48) ounces of marijuana-infused products in solid form
• Three (3) ounces of usable cannabis
• Two hundred sixteen (216) ounces of cannabis-infused products in liquid form
• Twenty one grams of cannabis concentrates
As a registered medical marijuana patient, you will also be authorized to grow and possess in your domicile:
• Up to six (6) plants for personal medical use
• Up to eight (8) ounces of usable cannabis produced from said plants
What are the other benefits of being registered with the Washington State medical marijuana authorization database?
Registered medical marijuana patients may participate in a cooperative garden. They are also protected from arrest, prosecution, criminal sanctions, or civil consequences pertaining to the legal amount of cannabis they are allowed to possess/consume.
What if I need more than the amount of cannabis allotted for registered medical marijuana patients?
If your physician determines that a patient's medical needs exceed the standard specified amount, doctors may specify on the medical marijuana authorization that the patient is qualified to grow and possess in their domicile:
• Up to fifteen (15) plants for personal medical use
• Up to sixteen (16) ounces of usable cannabis
Can I join a collective garden?
Up to four patients who are registered in the medical marijuana authorization database can join together to grow the total number of plants authorized by the participants.
What if I don't want to join the medical marijuana authorization database?
Entry into the database is voluntary, but provides additional benefits and legal protections. You may continue to purchase cannabis from retail outlets, but you will be subject to restrictions and limited in the amount of cannabis you may possess. Those who are not registered with the database may still use an affirmative defense to criminal prosecution if they possess no more than four (4) plants and six (6) ounces of usable cannabis.
Will I be required to pay taxes?
Yes and no. Patients are exempt from paying state sales tax at eight (8) percent. However, all cannabis sales, both medical and recreational, will be taxed with the full 37 percent excise tax. This includes the sales of marijuana, marijuana concentrates, usable marijuana, and marijuana-infused products, whether the products are medical or recreational.
Federal Law and Policies
- Memorandum for Selected United State Attorneys (), Subject: Investigations and Prosecutions in States Authorizing the Medical Use of Marijuana, U.S. Department of Justice, Office of the Deputy Attorney General, 10/19/2009
- VHA Directive 2011-004, Access to Clinical Programs for Veterans Participating in State-Approved Marijuana Programs, Veterans Health Administration, 01/31/2011
- Ch. 69.51A RCW - Medical Marijuana
- SB 5052 - Cannabis Patient Protection Act
- Washington Non-discrimination Laws and the Use of Medical Marijuana (), Washington State Human Rights Commission, 03/2009
Chapter 69.51A RCW: Medical Marijuana Law in Washington State
This is the Washington State Medical Marijuana law from the WA State Legislature page.
This is the most recent law change to medical marijuana. Effective July 2016
Washington State Medical Marijuana Frequently Asked Questions
This is a very comprehensive guide for patients and physicians that explains Washington State Medical Marijuana Act and answers many common questions about it.
Washington State Cannabis News
Cannabis News is a great source for the articles on marijuana and its current legal developments in Washington State.
The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML)
Since its founding in 1970, NORML has provided a voice in the public policy debate for those Americans who oppose marijuana prohibition and favor an end to the practice of arresting marijuana smokers. A nonprofit public-interest advocacy group, NORML represents the interests of the tens of millions of Americans who smoke marijuana responsibly.
Marijuana Policy Project (MPP)
MPP envisions a nation where marijuana is legally regulated similarly to alcohol, marijuana education is honest and realistic, and treatment for problem marijuana users is non-coercive and geared toward reducing harm.
Medical Marijuana ProCon.org
Medical Marijuana ProCon.org presents laws, studies, statistics, surveys, government reports, and pro and con statements on questions related to marijuana as medicine.
MSNBC Special Report - Marijuana, Inc
Medical Marijuana Special Report - Marijuana Inc
Banned activities for medical marijuana patients and caregivers.
The Medical Marijuana Act does not give a broad freedom to medical marijuana patients to use marijuana anywhere, any time. Patients are not free to display their marijuana in view of the general public. No health insurer can be held liable for any claim for reimbursement for the costs of the medical use of marijuana. No physician shall be forced to authorize or discuss the medical use of marijuana. No school, business, or youth center may be forced to accommodate the medical use of marijuana. No patient will be able to claim a defense if their use of marijuana endangered the health or well-being of any person while driving.
Drug testing programs—including urinalysis and hair testing—required by federal agencies and some businesses for workers in certain safety-sensitive positions are unaffected by the Act. Even where drug testing is not a factor, employers may prevent employees from using marijuana on the job, if any degree of impairment would interfere with their work.
A warning to all marijuana users.
The Medical Marijuana Act was designed to protect a specific class of people—the seriously and terminally ill. It does not apply to recreational users of marijuana who simply feel they get some “medical” benefit. It does not even apply to terminally ill patients who fail to get their physician’s approval. The Act enables the courts to sort out who is entitled to these new protections and who is not.
Every detail, from proof of illness to the form and reasons for a marijuana recommendation, is a potential weak link in a person’s case. Don’t put yourself at risk on a flimsy claim of a medical need for marijuana. Remember, it is a class C felony to fraudulently produce any record claiming to be valid medical documentation