Many states across the United States may have relaxed their marijuana laws, but not Arizona. With its failure to pass Proposition 205, which aimed to legalize marijuana possession and consumption by adults 21 and older, Arizona continues to impose some of the strictest marijuana laws in the entire country.
Medical marijuana is legal in Arizona
However, for the strictness of its marijuana laws, medical marijuana is legal in Arizona. It has been legal in the state since Proposition 203 passed in 2010 with 50.1% of the vote.
Obtaining a medical marijuana card is the only way for anyone to possess a limited amount of this Schedule 1 controlled substance. To qualify for a medical marijuana card, you must have, among other things, a medical certification from a qualified doctor in Arizona stating that you are suffering from a debilitating condition, the symptoms of which can be alleviated by cannabis. Among the qualifying medical conditions are cancer, HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis C, glaucoma, Crohn’s Disease, and ALS.
Once you get a medical marijuana card, you will be legally allowed to purchase up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana every 14 days, and only from a licensed Arizona dispensary.
Marijuana possession a felony
If you don’t have a medical marijuana card, then it would be illegal for you to have marijuana in your possession. Under Arizona Revised Statute 13-3405, no one can use or possess, possess to sell, produce, or transport or import marijuana into Arizona. Anyone caught with marijuana in the state will be facing felony charges under the same law.
Yes, in Arizona, being caught with any amount of marijuana is already a felony as far as the law is concerned. How much pot is in your possession will then dictate the severity of the felony charges.
If authorities find less than two pounds of marijuana in your possession, you will be slapped with a Class 6 felony—the least severe felony charge—if it’s for personal use, Class 4 if you’re selling it, Class 5 if it was produced personally, and Class 3 if you’re transporting it within or importing it into the state. The charges will then get progressively more severe as the amount of confiscated marijuana increases.
Hope for those facing marijuana charges in Arizona
Although the law clearly states that being caught with under two pounds of marijuana is a Class 6 felony charge, you can only be charged with possession of marijuana if the amount in your possession is “usable.” With a skilled and experienced Arizona criminal defense lawyer on your side, you can argue that the amount of marijuana in your possession is not usable and that any possession charges against you should be dismissed.