The laws surrounding cannabis can be confusing. Many people grew up under the premise that marijuana was a Schedule 1 controlled substance. These drugs have a high potential for abuse and possess no medical use. On a federal level, it continues to live under that classification. However—and this is the cause of the confusion—states have chosen to legalize for medicinal use, recreational use, or both.
Michigan was the 13th state to legalize marijuana in 2008, and they approved it for recreational use in 2018. Despite this legislation, the federal government and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) have not altered their classification. If you choose to use cannabis in Michigan, you must understand the boundaries. For example, airports fall under federal control. Even if the airport is in Michigan, the state's marijuana laws do not override federal ones. Furthermore, the state has its own parameters for legal usage.
To use cannabis in Michigan, you have to be 21 years old. If you are inside your own home, you are legally allowed to possess up to 10 ounces. You must understand that the amount drops to 2.5 ounces if you are outside of it and in public.
Another common question pertains to what you are allowed to do with your own cannabis. Are you able to sell to someone else? No, you are not. You are, however, able to give it to someone else (who is of legal age) as long as they don't pay you for it.
You can also legally grow it on your own property as long as it is not visible from public spaces. Someone walking on a public sidewalk cannot see cannabis plants in your yard.
Like alcohol, there are still ramifications for misuse. The key to remember is that the sale and distribution of cannabis carry more significant penalties than personal use. For example, if you are found to have more than 2.5 oz (but less than 5 oz) on your person in public, it is a civil infraction (lower than a misdemeanor), with no incarceration and a maximum fine of $500.
If you were to sell any amount of cannabis under 5kg, that is a felony. It carries up to 4 years in prison with a maximum fine of $20,000. Selling 45 kilograms or more carries a sentence of 15 years and a maximum fine of $10,000,000.
Although cannabis has been legal in Michigan for recreational use, there are still ways in which you can be charged criminally. If you have further questions or would like to speak with an attorney about a legal matter associated with cannabis, contact the trusted and established professionals at Hamilton Law for a free consultation.