Is Weed Legal in Ohio?
Currently, Ohio’s marijuana laws only allow the herb for medical purposes. Weed remains partially decriminalized, but recreational use is still outlawed.
Read on to learn exactly how weed is legal in Ohio and what OH law says about possession, cultivation, consumption, and adult use.
Ohio marijuana laws
Weed has been decriminalized in Ohio since 1975 when House Bill 300 was signed into law. Today, 22 municipalities, including Jacksonville, Adena, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Toledo, Athens, Dayton, and Columbus, have further decriminalization measures in place.
On June 8th, 2016, Ohio became the 25th state to allow medical marijuana use when Gov. John Kasich signed House Bill 523 into law.
A year before that, a ballot measure known as Issue 3 was defeated at the polls. It sought to legalize recreational cannabis, which is still prohibited under Ohio’s marijuana laws.
Is buying marijuana legal in Ohio?
Yes, purchasing weed is legal in Ohio, but only for medicinal purposes. You can also legally buy marijuana seeds as “adult novelty” keepsakes, as long as they’re un-germinated.
According to the advocacy group NORML, illegal possession of under the following amounts are all minor misdemeanors with a maximum fine of $150:
- 100 grams (about 3.5 ounces) of weed
- 5 grams (approx. 0.17 ounces) of solid hashish
- 1 gram (approx. 0.03 ounces) of liquid hashish
- Weed paraphernalia
As a first offense, a gift of 20 grams (around 0.70 ounces) of cannabis carries the same penalties. As a second offense, the fine amount is a maximum of $500 with up to 60 days imprisonment.
The marijuana laws in Ohio also determine that illegal cannabis possession of more than 200 grams (around 7 ounces) is a felony. Possession of up to 1,000 grams (about 35.2 ounces) carries a maximum one-year incarceration period and a fine of up to $2,500.
Is medical marijuana legal in Ohio?
Yes, medicinal weed is legal under the Ohio medical marijuana laws. According to the state’s Medical Marijuana Control Program, certified physicians can recommend cannabis use to treat these qualifying conditions:
- HIV and AIDS
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
- Multiple sclerosis
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Crohn’s disease
- Parkinson’s disease
- Epilepsy and other seizure disorders
- Chronic traumatic encephalopathy
- Hepatitis C
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord disease or injury
- Chronic, severe, or intractable pain
- Complex region pain syndrome
- Chronic migraines
- Tourette’s syndrome
- Ulcerative colitis
- Sickle cell anemia
Once a year, the public can petition the State Medical Board of Ohio to include additional medical conditions.
While medical cannabis is legal in Ohio, you can only use and purchase it as a program participant. To become a registered patient:
- A physician with an active Certificate to Recommend (CTR) must confirm your condition every year before submitting a medical marijuana recommendation to the Patient Registry.
- Once you complete your registration on the Patient Registry and receive your Patient Registry Card, you can buy medical marijuana at an approved Ohio dispensary.
- Caregivers can also register to buy, possess, and administer medical marijuana for their patients.
- An annual fee of $50 or $25 for caregivers is also required at registration.
Certified physicians can recommend a maximum 90-day medical marijuana supply with three refills (a 360-day supply in total). That said, registered patients or caregivers can only legally possess a 90-day supply.
Can I grow my own cannabis in Ohio?
No, the marijuana laws in Ohio prohibit weed cultivation for any personal, household, or family use. While you can buy cannabis seeds for souvenir purposes, you can’t grow them, even if you’re a medical marijuana patient.
The penalties for illegal weed cultivation are identical to illegal possession, calculated by weight. According to Ohio Revised Code, less than 100 grams (approx. 3.5 ounces) of illegally cultivated cannabis is a minor misdemeanor.
Is cannabis oil legal in Ohio?
Yes, cannabis oil is legal in Ohio for medicinal use. The Ohio Board of Pharmacy banned stores from selling hemp-derived CBD oil despite the 2018 Farm Bill, which removed hemp as a controlled substance.
Currently, only registered patients with a physician’s recommendation can get marijuana- and hemp-derived CBD oil from state-approved dispensaries.
Is cannabis consumption legal in Ohio?
Yes, but only the consumption of medical marijuana is legal in Ohio. Registered patients can use weed in the following forms:
- Lotions and creams
- Plant material
Vaporization (vaping) is also allowed, but smoking and any other forms of combustion are prohibited. It’s also against Ohio’s marijuana laws to make any kind of cannabis attractive to minor children.
Is recreational weed legal in Ohio?
No, the marijuana laws in Ohio don’t currently permit recreational weed.
In 2020, the Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol Campaign attempted to put cannabis legalization on the ballots but missed the deadline. Activists have since temporarily suspended their efforts until the 2022 elections.
So, when will marijuana be legal in Ohio for recreational use? No one can say for certain, but the future looks promising, so start stocking up on your favorite pot seeds.
In May 2021, the House reintroduced the Marijuana Opportunity, Reinvestment, and Expungement Act of 2021. Known as the MORE Act, this piece of legislation would remove cannabis from the federal Controlled Substances Act of 1970.
If it’s signed into law, Ohio’s statutes prohibiting the sale and use of controlled substances would no longer apply to marijuana. If Ohioan lawmakers then continue to prohibit marijuana against public opinion, 2022 ballot initiatives could push for adult-use legalization.
In states where weed is legal, cannabis sales totaled $20 billion in 2020 alone, a figure projected by the MORE Act Bill to double by 2025.
Recreational cannabis use is currently legal in 17 states, along with Washington D.C. and two territories. Meanwhile, marijuana laws in Ohio, 35 other states, and two territories permit medical weed use.
With federal decriminalization of cannabis looming, we’re sure to see continued law reforms in Ohio and across the United States.
So, why not stay ahead and collect your favorite indica, sativa, autoflowering, or feminized seeds in the meantime?