Is weed legal in Montana? Only medical weed is legal in the state. Adult-use has been illegal since 1929. Possession and sale carry harsh minimum sentences and big fines. However, the state is very close to legalizing adult-use pot. Learn more about the state’s weed and hemp laws below.
Is Adult-Use Legal?
At the moment, adult-use weed is illegal in the state. However, a measure on the November 2020 ballot would legalize it. Under the bill, only in-state residents would be able to start a weed business. Support is strong for legal pot among residents and lawmakers. If the measure passes, adult-use sales could start in late 2022 or early 2023.
Under state law, possession of up to 60 grams is punishable by six months in jail and a maximum fine of $500. A second offense is punishable by three years in jail and a maximum $1,000 fine. Both offenses are misdemeanors. Possession of more than 60 grams is a felony. It’s punishable by five years in jail and a maximum $50,000 fine. Possession with intent to distribute (any amount) is a felony. It's punishable by 20 years in jail and a maximum $50,000 fine.
Sale or Delivery
The sale or delivery of any amount with or without compensation is a felony. The offense is punishable by a minimum of one year in jail and a maximum sentence of life in jail and/or a fine up to $50,000. Adults who sell to minors are charged with a felony, 2 years in jail (minimum), and up to a $50,000 fine. Selling within 1,000 feet of school grounds is a felony punishable by a minimum of three years and a maximum of life in jail and a fine of up to $50,000.
Growing up to one pound or 30 plants of weed is a felony. It's punishable by 10 years in jail and up to a $50,000 fine. Growing more than one pound or 30 plants of weed is a felony. It’s punishable by a minimum of two years and a maximum of life in jail and up to a $50,000 fine. Second or subsequent offenses are punishable by double the jail time and fine.
The state allows for the conditional release of first-time offenders. The conditional release allows offenders to opt for probation over a trial. They must complete the probation program to remove the charge from their criminal records. The offender may need to complete a drug education course.
Mandatory Minimum Sentence
Under the law, judges must sentence offenders to the mandatory minimum sentence or a higher sentence. The offender must serve the entire minimum sentence without the possibility of parole. Non-violent weed smokers sentenced to life in jail as a minimum mandatory sentence have no chance of parole.
Is Medical Use Legal?
The state legalized medical pot in 2004. The state allows for the medical use of weed by qualifying patients. Patients must register online with the Department of Health and Human Services to obtain a medical card. Patients must submit a physician’s statement verifying their condition. Minors under the age of 18 can receive a card with the help of a parent or legal guardian as a provider.
Patients can possess up to one ounce of usable weed and four mature plants and 12 seedlings. They can buy their weed from a pot shop, get it delivered, or grow their own. Patients can qualify for medical pot if they have any of these conditions:
- Cachexia or wasting syndrome
- Severe chronic pain that is persistent and significantly interferes with daily activities
- Intractable nausea or vomiting
- Epilepsy or an intractable seizure disorder
- Multiple sclerosis
- Crohn’s disease
- Painful peripheral neuropathy
- A central nervous system disorder resulting in chronic, painful spasticity or muscle spasms
- Admittance into hospice care
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Is CBD/Hemp Legal?
Hemp-derived CBD products are available for sale in the state. However, the state prohibits CBD in food, beverages, and dietary supplements. Hemp-derived CBD can be found in oils, tinctures, and topicals throughout the state. Cannabis-derived CBD is only available to qualifying medical patients.
Montana Cannabis College
The state may be close to legalizing weed. If the measure passes, the state’s weed market will significantly grow. Now’s your chance to get ahead of the competition with the right weed training. CTU’s Montana cannabis college can teach you the state and country’s current laws. Updated information can keep you in the loop of industry developments. Ready to get started? Sign up here.