MGL c.94G. The primary marijuana possession law.
Includes who may possess marijuana, and how much.
MGL c.94C § 32L Possession of 2 ounces or less of marijuana
MGL c.94C § 32M Possession of 2 ounces or less of marijuana; drug awareness program for those under 18
Other related laws
830 CMR 64N Marijuana retail taxes
935 CMR Medical and recreational marijuana regulations
21 USC §§ 801-971 Drug abuse prevention and control
- 21 USC § 844 Penalties for simple possession
18 USC § 922(g)(3) prohibits any person who uses marijuana from shipping, transporting, receiving or possessing firearms or ammunition.
Selected case law
Comm. v. Cruz, 459 Mass. 459 (2011).
Police can't order a person out of a car just because they smell burned marijuana.
Commonwealth v. Gerhardt, 477 Mass. 775 (2017)
Talks about the use of field sobriety tests, and includes new Model Jury Instruction Regarding Roadside Assessments for Use in Prosecutions for Operating Under the Influence of Marijuana.
Comm. v. Keefner, 461 Mass. 507 (2012). The law which "decriminalized possession of one ounce or less of marijuana, did not repeal the offense of possession with intent to distribute marijuana, ... where the amount of marijuana possessed is one ounce or less."
Comm. v. Long, 482 Mass. 804 (2019)
"The overwhelming odor of unburnt marijuana wafting from a large, windowless, cinder-block warehouse, ... in a place where marijuana cultivation was not allowed under State law; evidence of an apparent break-in; and two isolated vehicles parked in what police officers viewed as a suspicious manner after ordinary business hours ... was sufficient to support a finding of probable cause to search a warehouse for evidence of illegal marijuana cultivation."
Comm. v. Richardson, 479 Mass. 344 (2018)
Addresses the prosecution of a person for trafficking in marijuana where that person was legally permitted to grow marijuana for medical purposes. Includes new model jury instructions.
Comm. v. Rodriguez, 472 Mass. 767 (2015). The smell of burned marijuana isn't enough for police to stop a vehicle.
A running list of recreational marijuana dispensaries in Massachusetts - and those soon to open, Boston.com
Provides information on dispensaries, including locations, hours, parking, and payment options.
Can my financial aid be affected by marijuana use? and other marijuana-related concerns for college students, MassLive, April 2019.
Even though recreational use is legal in Massachusetts, use by college students can cause "a major legal headache and the potential loss of financial aid if a student does not follow the law."
Cannabis and the workplace: an overview of employees rights, Boston Lawyer Blog, Zalkind, Duncan & Bernstein. A thorough discussion of employees rights in regard to drug testing and recreational and medical marijuana.
Guidance on home cultivation. To grow marijuana in your home:
- You must be at least 21 years old
- You can only grow up to 6 plants in your home
- If there's more than one person over 21 living in the home who wants to grow at home, the maximum number of plants that may be grown in a home is 12 plants
- The plants must be grown in an area that has a lock or security device
- The plants can't be visible from a public place without the use of binoculars, aircraft or other optical aids
- You can't manufacture at home marijuana or hemp by means of any liquid or gas, other than alcohol, that has a flashpoint below 100 degrees Fahrenheit
"Like alcohol, you cannot have an open container of adult-use marijuana or marijuana products in the passenger area of your car while on the road or at a place where the public has access. An “open container” includes a package with its seal broken or a package from which the contents have been partially removed. The “passenger area” does not include a trunk or a locked glove compartment."
A look back at four years of recreational marijuana in Massachusetts, masslive.com
A comprehensive timeline of the development of the marijuana industry in Massachusetts, including statistics on the impact on the economy.
Marijuana in Massachusetts: what's legal? Mass.gov. Provides plain language basics about what is legal (and what is not).
Recreational marijuana law: best practices for landlords, Law Office of Renee Lazar. Provides guidance on smoking and cultivating in residential tenancies.
Criminal law (Mass. practice v. 32) West Group, with supplement. Section 466.50 Act establishing a sensible state marijuana policy.
Marijuana business operations, National Business Institute, 2019.
Massachusetts cannabis law manual, MCLE, 2019.
Massachusetts proof of cases, West Group. Annual edition. Section 47:2, Marijuana – possession and use by adults
The law & business of marijuana dispensaries, MCLE, 2018.
MGL c.94I Medical use of marijuana
Allows use of marijuana for medical purposes.
935 CMR Cannabis Control Commission
Cannabis Control Commission Orders Quarantine on All Marijuana Vaping Products Except Medical Use Flower Vaporizers, Cannabis Control Commission, November 12, 2019.
Barbuto v. Advantage Sales and Marketing, LLC, 477 Mass. 456 (2017)
An employee who has been fired for using medical marijuana off-site, and not before or during work, may sue her employer for handicap discrimination.
Wright's Case, 486 Mass. 98 (2020)
A workers’ compensation insurer cannot be compelled to pay for an employee's medical marijuana.
Medical use of marijuana program, Cannabis Control Commission
Includes links to information for patients, dispensaries and more.
Medical marijuana, Mass. Medical Society
Links to information on issues for physicians regarding medical marijuana
Medical marijuana dispensaries, Mass. Executive Office of Health and Human Services.
Provides the location and hours of all registered medical marijuana dispensaries in Massachusetts.
Open letter to all Federal firearms licensees, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, September 21, 2011.
"any person who uses or is addicted to marijuana, regardless of whether his or her State has passed legislation authorizing marijuana use for medicinal purposes, is an unlawful user of or addicted to a controlled substance, and is prohibited by Federal law from possessing firearms or ammunition."
|Last updated:||April 12, 2021|