Marijuana is a controversial subject, especially when it comes to the debate on if it should or should not be legalized in Kentucky. Regardless of what the legislation says about marijuana use, it’s a drug that many will continue to use, legal or not. Unfortunately, most are unaware of the consequences if caught in possession of marijuana or the fact that medical marijuana may soon be legalized here in Kentucky.
What If You Get Caught in Possession?
So, what actually happens if you are caught in possession? Under Kentucky Revised Statute (KRS) 218A.1422, possession of any amount of marijuana is considered a Class B misdemeanor. Depending on the number of previous offenses, you may be required to pay a fine, spend a maximum of 45 days in jail, or even have to do both. However, the punishment depends on the situation and if there were any aggravating circumstances that could result in higher fines and jail time. For example, under KRS 218A.1421, if you are caught with more than eight (8) ounces of marijuana, that will be used as evidence that you possessed marijuana with the intention to sell or distribute it (even if you had no intention to do so) and would have a harsher punishment. Being caught in possession while also driving under the influence of the drug is another circumstance in which you would be handed a heftier punishment such as losing your license or more jail time.
What May The Future Bring For Marijuana?
However, a loophole may soon open itself up to users. A bill on the legalization of medical marijuana is being introduced into the 2019 Kentucky legislation. This would legalize marijuana for medical use and give doctors the option to offer it as treatment to patients. It would be regulated by the Department of Public Protection’s Office of Alcoholic Beverage Control and would have certain requirements such as yearly licensing fees and limits on the possession. You would be required to get a recommendation from your doctor as well as pass a background check. There would be no public consumption allowed and you would still be prohibited from driving while using the medical marijuana. You will also lose access if you are caught sharing your it with anyone else. The bill is being introduced in an effort to provide relief to thousands of Kentuckians who suffer from pain that conventional medicines are not doing anything for.
While this bill could help thousands of Kentuckians find relief from chronic pain, cancer, terminal illness by using cbd oil, and much more., it still brings up a lot of questions about how the legalization of medical marijuana affects you and the state. The legalization would not only bring changes in marijuana laws but in the economy of the state as well. New business opportunities would open up as the state would need cultivators, processors, and dispensaries for medical marijuana. Legislators would also be forced to revise or create new marijuana laws that accounted for medical marijuana. All these changes can be a lot to keep up with and it is important that if you have questions related to the legal or even business issues surrounding medical marijuana that you contact an attorney who can help guide you through your questions.
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The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of anyone else. Any content provided herein is not intended to malign any religion, ethic group, club, organization, company, individual or anyone or anything. The information provided herein should NOT be considered legal advice.