florida marijuana laws

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Florida Marijuana Laws in 2024

May 16, 2024

As of May 2024, recreational marijuana possession and use remain illegal in Florida. However, limited marijuana possession is no longer a crime in various Florida communities; instead of being arrested, offenders will receive a payable citation. Since June 2015, several cities and counties in Florida have approved comparable policies that allow officers to issue citations instead of arrest warrants for cannabis possession under 20 grams. 

The following counties and cities have approved decriminalizing possession of up to 20 grams of marijuana:

  • Miami-Dade County;
  • Broward County;
  • Palm Beach County;
  • Tampa;
  • Orlando;
  • Miami Beach;
  • Hallandale Beach;
  • Key West;
  • West Palm Beach;
  • Volusia County;
  • Osceola County;
  • Alachua County;
  • Port Richey;
  • Cocoa Beach
  • Sarasota

This blog clarifies the current legal framework of Florida marijuana laws in 2024, highlighting recent developments and exploring potential future changes impacting medical and recreational use.

Medical Marijuana Limits in Florida

In Florida, as of 2024, medical marijuana patients are allowed to purchase up to 2.5 ounces of smokable flower within any 35-day period. Additionally, they cannot possess more than 4 ounces of whole-flower cannabis at any given time. For non-smokable forms of marijuana, such as edibles, inhalation products, tinctures, and others, there is a 70-day supply limit, which equates to 24,500 mg of THC. State regulations set these purchasing and possession limits to ensure the controlled use of medical marijuana, reflecting a cautious approach by health authorities to manage the dosages and types of cannabis products available to patients.

Medical Marijuana in Florida 

The Florida government passed the Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act of 2014, which went into effect on January 1st, 2015. Through the initiative, qualifying patients have access to non-smoked, low-THC marijuana.

Florida has medical marijuana legislation in place for people who could benefit from using it for pain reduction, spasticity, nausea, and other requirements connected to the qualifying diseases mentioned above.

According to Florida marijuana laws in 2024, Patients with qualifying conditions must get a Medical Marijuana Use Registry (MMUR) identification card from the Office of Medical Marijuana Use (OMMU) in order to purchase and possess medical marijuana. The application must be filed annually and may be filled out online. Renewal applications can only be made starting 45 days before your card expires. Details about the identity card application requirements and the approval procedure are provided on the OMMU website.

Here’s the breakdown of getting a Medical Marijuana Use Registry (MMUR) ID card:

  •  Receive a diagnosis from a qualified physician.
  • If eligible, the physician will register you in the Medical Marijuana Use Registry (MMUR).
  • To apply for a Florida ID card, visit the MMUR website or download and mail the application form. Provide a copy of your Florida ID, driver’s license, or proof of residency. Online applications will use your current driver’s license photo. Mailed applications require a recent (within 90 days) 2″x2″ color passport-style photo. A $75 registration fee applies.
  • After your application is approved and you receive your card, you may visit any medical marijuana dispensary in the state.

How Do I Get a Medical Marijuana Card?

Florida law establishes specific qualifying conditions for obtaining a medical marijuana card. These conditions are: 

  • Cancer;
  • Epilepsy;
  • Glaucoma;
  • Positive status for Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV);
  • Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS);
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder;
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis;
  • Crohn’s disease;
  • Parkinson’s disease;
  • Multiple sclerosis;
  • Medical conditions of the same kind or class as or comparable to those enumerated above;
  • A terminal condition diagnosed by a physician other than the qualified physician issuing the physician certification;
  • Chronic nonmalignant pain.

Only a licensed, qualified healthcare provider may assess a patient for a medicinal marijuana card. Medicinal marijuana in Florida may be dispensed in smokable, vape, edible, or oil/concentrate forms.

Florida law restricts medical marijuana use to adults over 18. However, patients can designate a trusted adult (at least 21 years old) as a caregiver. This caregiver can buy and, in some cases, administer medical marijuana for the patient. Only one caregiver is allowed per patient. Minors under 18 must have a designated caregiver or legal representative to manage their medical marijuana use.

Penalties for Possession

Like growing marijuana, you risk severe repercussions if caught with cannabis. Penalties for marijuana use in Florida include the following:

  • 20 grams or less – a misdemeanor with a maximum sentence of 1-year imprisonment and a fine of up to $1,000;
  • More than 20 grams up to 25 pounds – a felony with a maximum sentence of 5 years imprisonment and a fine up to $5,000.

In Florida, possessing cannabis between 25 and 2,000 pounds is a serious crime. You face prison time (3 to 15 years) and a fine of up to $25,000, with mandatory minimum sentences. Penalties get harsher for larger amounts. Convictions also lead to a one-year driver’s license suspension.

Knowing the Florida marijuana laws in 2024 is not enough; you also need a skilled legal representative since convictions for growing, possessing, or selling marijuana carry serious consequences.

Cannabis Trafficking Penalties

Florida marijuana laws in 2024 specify strict penalties for the sale or delivery of cannabis, particularly when these activities occur near protected areas such as schools, parks, or colleges.

  • Sale or Delivery Near Protected Areas: The sale or delivery of cannabis within 1,000 feet of a school, college, park, or other specified area remains a felony. It is punishable by a mandatory minimum of 3 years and can go up to 15 years in prison, with a fine of up to $10,000.

Sale of Cannabis (General):

  • Up to 25 pounds: Selling up to 25 pounds of cannabis is a felony, punishable by up to 5 years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
  • 25 to 2,000 pounds: This range is considered cannabis trafficking, with penalties ranging from a mandatory minimum of 3 years to 15 years in prison and a fine up to $25,000.
  • 2,000 to 10,000 pounds: Sale within this range carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 7 years, up to 30 years in prison, and a fine of up to $50,000.
  • Delivery of Small Amounts (20 grams or less): Delivering 20 grams or less without payment is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to 1 year in prison and a $1,000 fine.

Consequences for Cultivation

Under Florida marijuana laws in 2024, the home cultivation of cannabis is still illegal. Any cultivation is considered a felony among first-time offenders. The penalties are as follows:

  • Up to 25 plants – a third-degree felony;
  • Up to 25 plants – incarceration up to 5 years and fines up to $5,000;
  • 25 or more plants – if the owner of the property, a second-degree felony;
  • 25 or more plants—incarceration up to 15 years and fines up to $10,000.

There are mandatory minimums and even harsher punishments for illegal operations that are more extensive (300 plants or more). 

Additionally, penalties increase if you’re found in possession of marijuana, including hash and concentrates (whether or not there is an intent to sell), within 1,000 feet of protected areas in Florida, such as:

  • Church or place of worship that conducts religious activities;
  • Park or community center;
  • Assisted living facility;
  • Public housing;
  • Convenience business;
  • Childcare facility between 6 a.m. and midnight;
  • College, university, or another postsecondary educational institute.

Additionally, Florida marijuana laws in 2024  require Licensed medical marijuana treatment centers (MMTC) to utilize seed-to-sale tracking software, which is BiotrackTHC in the state.

Legal Locations for Cannabis Consumption in Florida

Marijuana use is only permitted in private residences in Florida. Marijuana use while driving is prohibited.

Cannabis may be consumed as edibles and via spray, oils, vaping, smoking, and pills. Cannabis flowers may only be used for smoking or vaping and must be sealed in tamper-proof containers according to Florida marijuana laws. Patients younger than 18 may not use medical marijuana via smoking unless the patient is diagnosed with a terminal condition and a second, board-certified physician concurs with the diagnosis.

Marijuana Advertising Laws in Florida

Florida’s marijuana advertising laws for medical marijuana treatment centers (MMTCs) are quite specific and restrict certain types of advertisements to prevent public exposure and avoid appealing to minors.

  • Visibility Restrictions: MMTCs cannot advertise in public places like streets, sidewalks, or parks.
  • Content Restrictions: Ads must avoid anything that seems aimed at children, like cartoons or characters. They also can’t promote recreational use.
  • Internet Advertising: MMTCs can advertise online, but the state must approve the ads first. No annoying pop-up ads are allowed, and users should easily opt out if they don’t want to see future ads.
  • Disclosure Requirements: MMTC websites must clearly explain their products, including type, strain, ingredients, pricing for different amounts, and any discounts or eligibility requirements.

These regulations aim to ensure that advertising for medical marijuana is conducted responsibly and does not influence or attract minors.

Packaging and Labeling Requirements

Florida requires strict packaging for medical marijuana. Processors at licensed dispensaries need state approval for containers, labels, and packaging. All containers must be childproof, and labels must be clear. No product pictures are allowed except for a state-approved logo and the marijuana symbol. Edibles and smokable products must be in plain white, opaque containers. Every package must also come with a separate information sheet for the patient or caregiver. This sheet will explain everything they need to know about the product.

The patient insert, as well as the package for every usable product, must include the following permissive information:

  • MMTCs may use multiple labels on each package.
  • Packages must include a patient insert detailing product information.
  • Required label information includes:
  • MMTC’s approved logo.
  • QR code for product details and certificate of analysis.
  • Product SKU, barcode, or identifiers.
  • Cultivar name in a specified font and size.
  • Instructions, health information, and warnings.
  • Labels must not claim that products cure medical conditions.
  • Labels must also include:
  • Compliance with Florida statute 381.986(8)(e)10d.
  • Names of the MMTC, certifying physician, and patient.
  • Product name, dosage form, and THC/CBD concentrations.
  • Warning against unauthorized transfer.
  • The universal symbol covers at least 10% of the package surface.

Evolving Cannabis Regulations in Florida

Florida marijuana laws in 2024 are undergoing a period of significant change. Recent modifications will likely impact the entire cannabis industry in the state, including licensing procedures.

Public opinion on cannabis is shifting, with growing support for adult recreational use. This and recent legal developments suggest future changes could occur swiftly. The information provided is for general knowledge only and should not be taken as legal advice. If you’re interested in Florida’s cannabis industry, consult with qualified professionals.