Jenny Bloom

October 11, 2019

In the state of New York, cannabis is labeled under the New York Public Health Law as a Schedule I hallucinogenic substance. The same goes for synthetic equivalents, which include resinous derivatives and extracts with chemical properties similar to marijuana.

To some degree, New York has decriminalized cannabis. Typically, this means no criminal record or required prison time for first-time marijuana offenders found with small amounts for personal use. Related offenses are treated more like minor traffic violations than major crimes.

New York has enacted medical marijuana laws. Patients are given 30-day supplies of non-smokable cannabis preparations to help treat various diseases and conditions, such as epilepsy, cancer, ALS, MS, Parkinson’s Disease and more. The cannabis-based preparations must be purchased from state-licensed marijuana dispensaries.

Possessing Marijuana in New York

Because of New York’s decriminalization process, first-time offenders don’t face such harsh penalties as in the past. Other offenders, however, do face strict penalties:

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• First-time offenders with less than 25 grams = $100 fine, no jail time

• Second offense within 3 years of the first one and less than 25 grams = $200 fine, no jail time

• Third or subsequent offense within 3-years’ time with less than 25 grams = $250 fine and up to 15 days in jail

• Between 25 grams and 2 ounces = Misdemeanor: Up to $500 fine and up to 3 months’ incarceration

• Between 2 to 8 ounces = Misdemeanor: Up to $1,000 fine and up to 1 year in jail

• Between 8 to 16 ounces = Felony: Up to $5,000 fine and up to 4 years of imprisonment

• Between 16 ounces and 10 pounds = Felony: Up to $5,000 fine and up to a 7-year prison sentence

• More than 10 pounds = Felony: Up to $15,000 in fines and up to 15 years in prison

It is also a misdemeanor to display or use marijuana in public or within public view in New York. This crime is punishable by a $250 fine and up to 90 days in jail.

Selling Marijuana in New York

In the state of New York, it is illegal to sell cannabis. The sale of certain derivatives in only legal for state-licensed medical marijuana dispensaries. Penalties for selling cannabis in New York are as follows:

• Less than 1 marijuana cigarette or 2 grams exchanged without payment = Misdemeanor: Up to 3 months’ incarceration

• Less than 25 grams = Misdemeanor: Up to $1,000 fine and up to 1 year in jail

• Between 25 grams to 4 ounces = Felony: Up to $5,000 fine and up to 4 years of imprisonment

• Between 4 ounces to 16 ounces = Felony: Up to $5,000 fine and up to 7 years of incarceration

• More than 16 ounces = Felony: Up to $15,000 fine and up to 15 years in prison

• Sell any amount to a minor under 18 years old = Felony: Up to $5,000 fine and up to 7 years in prison

• Using minor to assist with selling = Felony: Up to $5,000 fine and up to 4 years in jail

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Drug trafficking carries steep penalties in New York. Major trafficking is a felony which carries fines up to $100,000 and up 15-25 years in prison. A person is deemed a major marijuana trafficker if acting as the director of an organization where one or more of the following conditions exists:

• Completes $75,000 in cannabis sales within a year or less

• Collects over $75,000 is sales from marijuana over a 6-month period of less

• Possess cannabis with intent to sell more than $75,000 over the course of 6 months or less

Growing and Manufacturing Marijuana in New York

According to the New York Public Health Law, it’s a misdemeanor to cultivate cannabis within the state’s boundaries. This offense is punishable by up to as $100 fine and up to 1 year in prison. These offenders are also guilty of possession of marijuana as well and face those penalties as well.

Growing and Manufacturing Marijuana – Image powered by Nirvanashop.com

Parmeter v. Feinberg makes it possible for the state of New York to charge an offender with the crimes of “possession” and “cultivation” if that person is caught growing cannabis. Therefore, the more marijuana someone grows, the more they are in possession of, making the charges more severe.

Using Marijuana in New York

New York State has medical marijuana laws that allow patients to use derivatives of the drug for relief purposes. The following are qualifying conditions approved in New York for medical cannabis:

using medical cannabis

• Neuropathies

• Parkinson’s disease

• Huntington’s disease

• Epilepsyhttps://dmazcorp.com


• Spinal cord injuries and damage

• Multiple sclerosis

• Inflammatory bowel disease


Chronic pain

• Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

Patients prescribed medical marijuana products in New York are limited to non-smokable derivatives. They must buy cannabis-based goods are one of the state-licensed dispensing centers, where they can get a 30-day supply.

New York’s cannabis laws also allow each of these patients to appoint up to two certified caregivers. This gives the caregiver the right to shop for and buy medical marijuana products for the patients care.

New York Hemp Law

This state takes parts in authorized research related to the hemp industry. Hemp is a variety of the Cannabis sativa L species, which contains no more than 1% THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). New York’s Hemp Law was enacted through Senate Bill 7047, which took effect on June 15, 2015.

New York_Hemp_Law
New York Hemp Law – Image powered by Hempinc.com

Senate Bill 707 allows authorized growers to cultivate industrial hemp for farming and business research purposes. Registered and certified higher education institutes and the Department of Agriculture & Markets can study industrial hemp’s growth and cultivation. It’s strictly prohibited by law to sell products created for these research purposes.

THC is the primary psychoactive found in cannabis, which is responsible for the euphoric high. Having low THC levels and high CBD (cannabidiol) levels means getting the benefits of the healing and pain relieving properties of cannabis, without the euphoric feeling.


The state of New York considers the sale or possession of paraphernalia used to measure and weigh marijuana a misdemeanor. For first time offenders, selling or possessing balances and scales for these purposes is punishable by up to 1 year in jail.

Subsequent offenses become felonies in the eyes of the New York state law. This felony is punishable by up to a $5,000 fine and up to 7 years in prison.

Breaking the Marijuana Laws in New York

New York follows mandatory minimum sentencing policies. In such cases, presiding judges have no choice but to sentence a convicted criminal to no less than the minimum sentence allowed by law. If these offenders are sentenced to prison time, they will not be eligible for parole releases until the minimum mandatory sentence is complete in full.

Breaking Marijuana Laws – Image powered by Hempamerican.com

If convicted of a felony cannabis offense in New York, the offender may have to forfeit any and all proceeds made from the offense. Some judges will require the offender to also forfeit cars and other property acquired from marijuana sells or used in a cannabis offense.

Marijuana legislation can be complicated, but Jenny Bloom is always up for the task. Although not a lawyer, her experience as a reporter and PR specialist helps her understand legalese – especially when it relates to growing marijuana. A passionate supporter of legalization and home... [read more]


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  1. By SMOKEITUP ,18 Jun 2017
    anyone who has smoked marijuana in NY has broken the marijuana laws, I personally prefer to use the term Cannabis as this is its true name...it was called marijuana by the government during its prohibition.......END CANNABIS PROHIBITION NOT ONLY IN […]Read More
  2. By Jeremy D ,21 Jun 2018
    We dont need to legalize what they can not take from us. Do you see a problem were someone tells you you must have a card and buy and a certified location something wich i can grow naturally with no […]Read More
  3. By Chuck S ,11 Sep 2018
    Yes i agree i do grow and will continue to grow and sell to my close friends and NYS can't do a thing about it. ( ili ) NY catch me if u can.
  4. By Raj ,08 Jan 2020
    Is it legal to grow Marizuana in Newyork city like recreational Marizuana?

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