Recently on our legal forum a user asked, “I know several states have passed laws legalizing the use of recreational marijuana. Can you tell me which states have made it legal and what will happen now in the State of California now that California cannabis is legal?”
Voters in California approve recreational use of Cannabis
Just a few days ago with a margin of 56% to 44% voters in California passed Proposition 64, making California the fifth state in the United States to legalize the recreational use of marijuana. Adults in California along with others in Nevada, Massachusetts, Colorado, Washington, Oregon and Alaska can now use, grow, possess and share cannabis.
Getting legal marijuana in the “Golden State,” however, may be a bit more of a challenge. In fact, because the state has not developed a legal market to sell the product and it’s still illegal to buy pot on the black market, you might have to depend on the good will of others to share it with you.
Developing regulations for the California Cannabis market
Although regulations for California cannabis regulations have not been developed, one thing we do know is the state will want to be involved in any type of market that is developed. They also will want to ensure that they can make money.
Experts suggest, however, that regulations and licenses to sell California cannabis are not likely to be developed and issued until 2018, leaving many citizens wondering where to buy their product.
One option, however, is to grow your own product. Although the law restricts home cultivation to a “fully enclosed and secure” way and is limited to growing six plants at one time.
Where can I smoke California cannabis?
Until regulations are full developed, legal experts suggest that all consumption of marijuana should be done in a private California residence. There may be updates to local rules and city ordinances which allows licensed on-site consumption or businesses which explicitly allow consumption on their premises, but for now it’s better to be safe.
Can I take my California cannabis to another state?
Because of the continued federal prohibition of the pot, it is not legal to travel to other states with your stash. In fact, all states in which the recreational use of marijuana has been legalized requires users to be grow and consume marijuana in that state only.
Driving under the influence of California Cannabis
Regardless of whether or not smoking pot has been legalized, driving under the influence of marijuana remains a crime in California under Vehicle Code 23152(e) VC.
The state may charge you with DUI of marijuana and win their case if they can prove that you operated a motorized vehicle while “your mental abilities were impaired by marijuana, to the extent that you were unable to drive with the caution of a sober person using ordinary care.”
If you are convicted of DUI of marijuana in California you could receive three to five years of probation, 96 to 6 months in jail, a driver’s license suspension, and fines of over $1,000 dollars.
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