Can You Transport Marijuana Across States?

Denys Svirepchuk
Denys Svirepchuk

Denys Svirepchuk is a dynamic writer at AskGrowers known for his engaging and informative content. His articles often blend entertainment with education, offering readers a unique perspective on the cannabis industry. Denys is particularly adept at crafting content that ranges from fun and quirky ideas, like cannabis-themed gifts to more serious topics such as industry news and legalization updates. He also provides in articles valuable guides and lifehacks for cannabis enthusiasts, delving into the specifics of cannabinoids and other intricate aspects of cannabis. Denys' work is characterized by its diversity making him a versatile and much-appreciated contributor to the cannabis community.

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Can You Transport Marijuana Across States?

Currently, medical marijuana is legal in a lot of states. In most places, it is decriminalized. In some states, even recreational cannabis is legal. Does it mean that there are some variations that would allow transporting weed from one state to another? For example, can someone transport cannabis from Nevada to California where it is fully legal or bring medical marijuana from Oklahoma to Arizona where THC is medically legal? Let us find out.

Problems You Can Face When Transporting Cannabis Across State Lines

If you take a look at the map that shows the status of marijuana legalization across the US, you will see that, theoretically, one could transport it across the states if cannabis is legal in both of them. However, not everything that sounds good in theory is as good in practice. There is one important thing to bear in mind – using this plant is still illegal at the federal level.

Cannabis, Transportation, and the Federal Law – What Can Go Wrong?

Here is how the system works: the federal government lets the authorities develop their own rules about cannabis, its legal status, retail trade, transportation, etc. Simply put, states handle such matters themselves. This, however, does not mean that the federal authorities have no power when it comes to cannabis. In particular, local laws determine the rules of interstate commerce. That, in turn, means that when someone is trying to get cannabis across the border, he or she needs to consider the federal law, which, as we have already noted before, prohibits cannabis. Consequently, the one who transports weed across states, even if it is legal in both states, risks getting in trouble with the law.

Need to Conform to the Standards

Nevertheless, federal law is not the only important thing to consider. In fact, there is another interesting aspect: state laws regarding cannabis are still laws, and they determine standards of growing/selling/transporting marijuana and MJ products.

Need to Conform to the Standards

Simply put, cannabis in any state needs to be grown in a certain way and sold only by the businesses which have obtained licenses. In most cases, you can move to another state and make a living as a driver with the same driving license, but this just does not work with cannabis. Local standards are very important, and yes, they are usually different.

Moreover, let us not forget that though medical cannabis is legal in most states and that most states have already decriminalized it, there are places where it is fully illegal or places where the number of existing restrictions is overwhelming. It is needless to say that you should never transport cannabis to one of such states.

What Consequences This May Have?

So what are the risks? They are big, actually. For instance, federal law just does not distinguish a recreational state from the one where it is fully illegal. In terms of the law, if someone violates Section 812 (regulates controlled substances) in the territory of America, location is not important – this person is breaking the federal law and therefore, commits a federal crime. This person will be charged with drug trafficking even if you have a relatively small amount of cannabis. Just take a look at the figures below.

If someone possesses:

  • 1 kg of cannabis (hash) oil
  • 1-49 plants of cannabis
  • Less than 50 kg of buds
  • 10 kg of the substance classified as hashish

The penalties are as follows:

  • First offense: $250,000-1,000,000 fine + up to five years in prison
  • Second offense: $500,000-2,000,000 fine + up to ten years in prison

By the way, the amount of buds you have is not this important – even if you have less than 50 kg, the penalty will be the same.

Some may argue that federals will not be trying to catch someone with a few kilos of weed this hard, so there is a chance that everything will be okay. Well, of course, it is up to you. Just note that even states that are the most loyal to consumers set their own restrictions regarding the transportation of marijuana and cannabis products.

Transportation in Fully Legal StatesOregon, for instance, does not allow importing them from other places. More importantly, export is forbidden, too. Breaking this law will have tons of negative consequences, too, so let us take a look at them.

  1. Less than 1 ounce – 260 USD (Class B violation)
  2. 1 ounce and more – 6,250 USD (Class A misdemeanor)
  3. 16+ ounces – 125,000 USD and 5 years in prison (Class C felony)

In Nevada, it is illegal to transport, export, and import cannabis. Under certain conditions, you may pay a 10,000 USD fine and get up to 10 of imprisonment.

Even in California, transportation of this plant and cannabis products to another state is impossible because the state will not authorize a license to transport them from the state legally.

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Read Also: Guide To Buying Cannabis

Final Thoughts: State to State Marijuana Transportation

As you can see, the situation is not this complex. Simply put, such kind of transportation is illegal. Crossing the border of the state with a few kilos or ounces of weed, even if it is legal, even there are not so many restrictions in the state where you take it, is a very bad idea. Is there any chance that this will change in the near future? It is hard to say.

In fact, the only thing people need to start transporting cannabis across states is federal legalization. Now, this plant, transportation, growing, and retail trade is prohibited by law, and we all must consider this. So, if you want to buy some marijuana in California and then bring it to your state, do not do it – currently, not buying too big amounts of weed and consuming it in CA is a much better idea. Look at the addresses of best dispensaries in California.


Read More About Marijuana Laws In The Following States: Michigan, Colorado, Illinois, Vermont, South Dakota, Alaska, Maine, Montana, New Jersey, Washington, Massachusetts, Maryland


Sources

https://fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/RL30722.pdf

https://www.opb.org/news/article/oregon-house-bill-cannabis-state-lines/

https://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/475B.227

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