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Marijuana is not totally decriminalized in Florida

The strange thing about marijuana laws is that federal law states one thing, but many state laws say another. Under federal law, you may not possess, manufacture, sell, distribute or use marijuana for any reason. If you live in Florida, however, state law says it's okay to use cannabis medicinally. There are strict regulations governing the process, but if you satisfy eligibility requirements and adhere to protocol, you would not necessarily be breaking the law if you were to smoke a joint.

Confusing, isn't it? How do you know what is legal in one place but not in another? What if you travel back across state lines into this state after vacationing somewhere that allows recreational use of the drug and forget you still have some in your suitcase? The best way to avoid legal problems is to first learn about the marijuana laws in the state where you reside. It's also good to know where to seek help if police charge you with a crime.

Here is what Florida law has to say about the matter

Even after reading this, you'll want to stay updated as marijuana laws are always changing. The following list, however, provides information regarding existing regulations:

  • In 2016, Florida voted to change its laws so you can use marijuana for medical reasons if you are eligible. New laws went into effect in 2017.
  • A physician licensed in this state must confirm that you are suffering from a debilitating condition or disease that warrants your use of the drug.
  • These laws do not impact federal law, which continues to list marijuana as a controlled substance, illegal in all forms and usages. You should know that when federal and state laws conflict, federal law takes precedence.
  • If police charge you for having under 20 grams of marijuana in your possession in Florida, you may face up to an entire year behind bars if the court convicts you.

More than 20 grams is punishable by up to five years in prison in this state, and more than 25 pounds means police can charge you with a first-degree felony. If you're currently, awaiting trial on a marijuana charge, some of this may be old news to you. It often helps to remember that you the law presumes your innocence of all charges unless proved otherwise in court beyond a reasonable doubt.

Experienced litigators know how to navigate the criminal justice system to maximize your chances of preserving your freedom and getting your life back on track. Most defendants reach out for support ahead of time to be as prepared as possible for the adjudication process.

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