LEARN | LAWS & REGULATIONS
Is weed legal in Maine?
Yes. Both medical and adult-use, or recreational, cannabis is legal in Maine for adults 21 and older.
On Nov. 2, 1999, Maine Medical Marijuana for Specific Illnesses, or Ballot Question 2, passed with 61% of voters in favor. It legalized medical cannabis for patients suffering from serious health conditions.
In 2009 voters passed the Maine Medical Marijuana Act , which expanded the state’s existing program and decriminalized cannabis possession of up to 2.5 ounces (71 grams). It officially established the Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Program (MMMP). The act created a system of nonprofit dispensaries and cultivators, giving patients and caregivers better access to treatments.
On Nov. 8, 2016, Maine voters passed An Act to Legalize Marijuana , allowing adults 21 and older to possess, consume, and cultivate marijuana for personal use. Since voters approved the original legislation in November 2016, the legislature made a number of changes and compromises and had to overcome vetoes to pass an amended law, LD 1719 . Among the changes was reducing the number of marijuana plants a recreational consumer can grow at home from six to three. The Legislature also postponed consideration of cannabis social clubs until 2023, leaving private property as the only place where recreational cannabis can be consumed.
The revised law established rules for sales of recreational weed and gave Mainers priority for commercial licenses. The provision giving priority to in-state businesses was struck down in 2020 after an out-of-state business brought a lawsuit. That was just one of the wrinkles that kept the state from awarding any recreational retail licenses until September 2020.
Where is it safe to purchase weed in Maine?
Medical marijuana cardholders and recreational customers can find licensed dispensaries in Maine and search by major metro areas including Augusta, Bangor, and Portland. Many dispensaries in Maine offer delivery and curbside pickup services in addition to storefront sales.
Where is it safe to consume weed in Maine?
Cannabis consumption must take place in a private space such as one’s home or other private property. Consuming cannabis or cannabis-infused products in public is subject to a $100 fine. Use of marijuana in a parked car or in public view is also prohibited. Driving a motor vehicle under the influence of cannabis is illegal.
Qualified patients and caregivers can possess:
- Up to 2.5 ounces (71 grams) of prepared marijuana
- Six mature plants
- 12 immature female plants
- Unlimited seedlings
- Up to 8 pounds (3.6 kilograms) of dried marijuana
Recreational consumers are allowed to use, transport, possess, or give away:
- 2.5 ounces (71 grams) of marijuana and concentrate that includes up to 5 grams of concentrate
- Three mature plants
- 12 immature plants
- Unlimited seedlings
They can give away up to six immature plants. Any marijuana gifts must be to adults over 21 years of age and completely free of charge.View the marijuana laws & regulations for Maine.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I buy adult use marijuana?
Until adult use marijuana stores are licensed and open, it is illegal to buy or sell non-medical marijuana in Maine.
See: 28-B M.R.S. §1501(1)(C)
How old do I have to be to consume marijuana and marijuana products?
In order to possess or use non-medical marijuana in Maine, you must be 21 years of age or older.
See: 28-B M.R.S. §1501
Where can I lawfully consume marijuana?
Using marijuana in any form (smoking, eating or vaping) isn’t allowed in public places, including amusement parks, ski resorts, sporting and music venues, state and national parks, campsites, playgrounds, sidewalks and roads, marijuana retail businesses, bars, restaurants and outdoor or rooftop cafes.
So where can you use it? Marijuana use is legal within the confines of private property. Just keep in mind that property owners, landlords, and rental companies can ban the use and possession of marijuana on their premises.
See: 28-B M.R.S. §1501(2)(A)
What are the rules around federal property?
Marijuana is legal under State of Maine law. Federally, it is not legal. If you’re on federal property, such as a national park or a border crossing, you can’t even have it in your possession.
See: 21 U.S.C. § 812
What are the laws on driving and marijuana use?
It is illegal to use marijuana in a vehicle. This goes for both the passenger and the driver.
It is also illegal to drive under the influence of marijuana. You could be charged with an OUI.
See: 28-B M.R.S. §1501(2)(B)(1), 29-A M.R.S. §2411
How much marijuana can I possess?
Adults 21 years of age or older can possess up to 2.5 ounces of a combination of marijuana, marijuana concentrate and marijuana products, including no more than 5 grams of marijuana concentrate.
See: 28-B M.R.S. §1501(1)(B)
How many plants can I grow?
Mainers can grow marijuana for personal use. As many as three mature, 12 immature plants, and an unlimited number of seedlings are allowed per resident 21 years of age or older.
These restrictions do not apply to the cultivation of marijuana for medical use by a qualifying patient, a caregiver, a registered caregiver or a registered dispensary as authorized by the Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Act.
See: 28-B M.R.S. §1502(1)
What are some of the rules related to growing marijuana for personal use?
First, keep it out of sight. An adult who chooses to grow plants for personal use must make sure their marijuana is not visible from a public way without the use of binoculars or other visual aid.
See: 28-B M.R.S. §1502(2)(A)
Second, make sure it’s locked up. An adult who chooses to grow their own plants must take reasonable precautions to prevent unauthorized access by individuals under the age of 21.
Finally, make sure the ownership of the plants is clear to law enforcement that may come across them. If you’re growing marijuana for personal use, the plant(s) must be tagged with a legible label that includes your name, driver’s license or state identification card number, and a notation that the plant(s) are being grown as authorized by law.
Connor S. Sample, Jr.
Personal Adult Use: Title 28-B, Section 1502
If the parcel or tract of land you are growing on is owned by someone else, you must have their written permission to grow and care for your plants and include the landowners name on each plant’s label.
See: 28-B M.R.S. §1502(1)(C) and (2)(C)
Who can buy medical marijuana?
Only medical patients can buy medical marijuana in Maine. Individuals who have received a patient certification from a medical professional may legally access medical marijuana from a caregiver or dispensary. Cards are available to Maine residents only.
Patients visiting Maine from another state may be able to purchase medical marijuana from a registered caregiver or dispensary if they have valid patient identification credentials (like a registry or patient identification card) and their state of residence allows them to use their state-issued credential to purchase medical marijuana in Maine.
How many dispensaries does Maine currently have in operation?
Maine has eight dispensaries. A list is available online here: https://www.maine.gov/dafs/omp/medical-use/dispensaries
Please note: dispensaries are not to be confused with caregivers. A caregiver may operate one retail store to sell their products.
What is the difference between a dispensary and a caregiver retail store?
Until recently, dispensaries were required to by nonprofit entities and there was only one per Maine Department of Health and Human Services Public Health District. At present, the most notable difference is that dispensaries can grow an unlimited number of marijuana plants.
How much does it cost to obtain a patient certification?
The cost for a patient certification depends on the medical provider conducting the examination and issuing the certification.
The Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Program provides patient cards to registered providers. In order to ensure patient access to the program, the State of Maine has never charged medical providers for the cards they provide to qualifying patients.
If an individual is interested in obtaining a medical card, they may wish to have those discussions with their primary care physician or other trusted medical provider. They may find in doing so that they are able to obtain a card at little to no cost to them.
Are temporary/digital/electronic patient certifications valid?
No. Temporary and/or digital medical marijuana patient cards or certifications are not an acceptable form of identification for the purposes of obtaining marijuana for medical use in Maine.
To be a qualifying patient in Maine’s program, among other things, an individual must possess “a valid written certification. ” A written certification is only valid if it is “a document on tamper-resistant paper signed by a medical provider. “. These requirements are written into law and aim to preserve the integrity of the medical marijuana program by reducing the possibility of altering and tampering with valid medical certifications.
The Office of Marijuana Policy provides medical providers with tamper-resistant patient certification paper at no cost.
Where can I find statistical information on the medical program?
You may be interested in reviewing the annual reports or open data of the Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Program.
What do I need to apply for or renew a registry identification card (caregiver, caregiver assistant, dispensary employee, etc.)?
Download, complete, and submit the appropriate medical use application. Among other things, you will need to provide a copy of your Maine-issued driver’s license or identification card as proof of residency.
Please review all materials for completeness prior to submission to ensure their timely consideration and processing.
In accordance with Governor Mills’ civil emergency declaration and corresponding executive order, the Office of Marijuana Policy will accept Maine driver’s licenses or identification cards that expired on or after March 15, 2020 as valid for the purposes of registry identification card applications and renewals. The executive order issued by Governor Mills deems these forms of identification extended until 30 days after the termination of the ongoing civil emergency.
How long does it take to get my caregiver card?
Current law requires the Department to approve or deny an initial application or a renewal within 30 days of receipt. In the case of an approval, a registry identification card must be issued within five days of approval.
The average time frame to approve an application is currently one month.
See: 22 M.R.S. §2425-A
How much do caregiver cards cost?
The cost for a registry identification card varies depending on the number of plants being grown. At most, a registered caregiver may grow 30 mature plants or 500 square feet of mature plant canopy and 60 immature marijuana plants. Applications fees corresponding to total plant count with fees growing incrementally by $240.
|Mature Plants||Immature Plants||Fee|
See: 22 M.R.S. §2425-A, 10-144 C.M.R. ch. 122, § 8(C)(1)
Where can I find information on which states authorize their residents to use their medical marijuana credential while visiting Maine?
OMP’s guidance on visiting patients and a list of approved states can be found here: https://www.maine.gov/dafs/omp/medical-use/certification-process/visiting-patients.
Can I conduct sales to a visiting patient who presents a medical marijuana credential and a form of identification from two different states?
No. A visiting medical marijuana patient must possess photographic identification or a driver’s license from the same jurisdiction as their valid medical marijuana credential.
See: 22 M.R.S. §2423-D.
Can I use marijuana if I am on probation?
For individuals on probation, there are rules and restrictions for marijuana that must be followed. Contact a probation officer to find out more.
Who assists the Office of Marijuana Policy with rulemaking?
Does Maine track and trace (seed-to-sale) marijuana products?
Maine requires the tracking and tracing of marijuana and marijuana products in both our adult use and medical use programs. OMP is in the process of deploying a software solution with Metrc to allow licensees and registrants to enter their information.
Can I travel outside of Maine with marijuana?
It’s illegal to leave Maine with any marijuana products—medical or recreational. Do not cross state lines or approach border crossing with marijuana in your possession. Mailing marijuana from Maine is also illegal.
See: 21 U.S.C. § 812, CBP Statement on Canada’s Legalization of Marijuana and Crossing the Border
Why does OMP use the term ‘marijuana’ instead of ‘cannabis’?
Marijuana is the legal term used in Maine law to describe the product and establishments we regulate and license.]]>