Medical marijuana capsules

The Legality of Medical Marijuana in Georgia

There is much confusion regarding the legality of medical marijuana in Georgia. In fact, cases abound of marijuana users facing criminal prosecution based on a misunderstanding of state laws regarding medical marijuana. Therefore, it is imperative that all Georgia residents understand the state’s medical marijuana laws in order to avoid inadvertently breaking the law. Below is an overview of the legality of medical marijuana in Georgia. For additional information, please contact a Georgia criminal defense attorney

Is Medical Marijuana Legal in Georgia?

Medical marijuana is legal in Georgia but in a very limited capacity. Under Georgia’s medical marijuana law, certain qualified individuals may possess up to 20 fluid ounces of low THC oil.  

THC is the compound in marijuana that causes its mind-altering effects. 

Who is Eligible to Use Low THC Oil?

Under Georgia’s medical marijuana law, the Georgia Department of Public Health may issue a “Low THC Oil Registry Card” to certain qualified individuals. This card protects individuals from arrest and prosecution if they are found in possession of the oil by law enforcement. There are eight medical conditions that qualify one for the registry. These qualifying conditions are: 

  • End-stage cancer or cancer with treatment that results in wasting, recalcitrant nausea, or vomiting; 
  • Severe or end-stage amyotrophic lateral sclerosis;
  • Seizure disorders related to certain head injuries or epilepsy;
  • Severe or end-stage multiple sclerosis;
  • Crohn’s disease;
  • Mitochondrial disease;
  • Severe or end-stage Parkinson’s disease; and
  • Severe or end-stage sickle cell disease.

Marijuana Remains Illegal in Georgia

As noted above, individuals who suffer from any of the above conditions may legally possess up to 20 fluid ounces of low THC oil. However, all other forms of marijuana remain illegal in Georgia. An individual who is caught with an ounce or less of marijuana can be charged with a misdemeanor, and this applies even if he or she possesses a medical marijuana card. In addition, anyone who possesses more than 20 fluid ounces of low THC oil can be charged with a felony, which carries a punishment of up to ten years in prison and a fine of up to $50,000. Therefore, it is imperative for anyone facing a marijuana possession charge in Georgia to immediately contact a Georgia criminal defense attorney for assistance. 

Contact a Georgia Criminal Defense Attorney 

If you’re facing marijuana possession or other drug charges in Georgia, it’s imperative that you hire an experienced Georgia criminal defense attorney to represent you in your Georgia criminal case. At Carter Pilgrim Stroud, our talented criminal defense attorneys have a long track record of successfully defending Georgia residents against criminal charges. We have a strong reputation for courtroom success and the ability to obtain dismissals and favorable plea bargains. Therefore, if you’re facing a criminal charge of any kind in Georgia, please contact us as soon as possible to schedule an initial consultation.  

Man buying drugs on the street.

Common Georgia Drug Possession Defenses

If you’ve been charged with drug possession in Georgia, there are several common defenses available that may be relevant to your case. And this applies even if you believe you’re guilty of the crime with which you’ve been charged. However, without the assistance of an experienced Georgia criminal defense attorney, it can be difficult to determine which defenses are the most likely to succeed. Therefore, in order to determine which of the following common Georgia drug possession defenses may be available in your case, please contact a Georgia criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. 

Illegal Search and Seizure

U.S. citizens are protected against unlawful searches and seizures. When the police violate these protections, any evidence obtained as a result of an illegal search or seizure is inadmissible in court. However, there are multiple exceptions to this law, so it’s important to consult with a Georgia criminal defense attorney if you believe an illegal search or seizure resulted in your drug possession charge. 

The Drugs Didn’t Belong to the Defendant

People are sometimes arrested for possessing drugs that don’t belong to them. If your Georgia criminal defense attorney can prove this, there is a good chance that your drug possession charge will be dropped. 

The Drugs are Missing

In drug possession cases, the police seize the drugs in question and place them into evidence. However, seized drugs are often transferred several times before they end up in the evidence locker, so there is always a chance they will be lost. When the drugs in a drug possession case are lost, this makes it extremely difficult for the prosecutor to succeed in the case against the defendant. 

Lab Analysis

The police occasionally arrest individuals for possessing substances that look like illegal drugs.  However, in a criminal case, the prosecution must prove that a seized substance is in fact the drug it purports it to be. This is accomplished by sending the substance to a crime lab for analysis. A negative result is a valid defense to a drug possession charge. 

Entrapment

Law enforcement officers are permitted to set up sting operations. However, these operations sometimes result in entrapment, which occurs when an officer or informant induces a suspect to commit a crime that he or she wouldn’t have committed otherwise. 

Contact a Georgia Criminal Defense Attorney  

If you’re facing a drug possession charge in Georgia, you need to hire an experienced Georgia criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. At Carter Pilgrim Stroud, our talented criminal defense attorneys will analyze the facts of your case and determine which defenses are available to you. We have a strong reputation in Georgia for successfully defending clients in the courtroom and obtaining favorable plea bargains and dismissals. Therefore, if you’ve been charged with drug possession in Georgia, please contact us as soon as possible to schedule an initial consultation.