Recreational: Illegal (soon to be legalized)
The Montana Medical Marijuana Act (MMA) first became law in 2004, when voters approved Initiative 148. The law has gone through a number of changes since, and as of May 2019, a patient is legally allowed to possess up to one ounce in a day and purchase a maximum of five ounces in a month.
In November 2020, voters legalized adult-use cannabis, which will become law on January 1, 2021.
How to Get a Medical Card in Montana
To receive a medical marijuana permit, a patient must register online with the state’s Department of Public Health and Human Services.
Potential patients must upload a signed physician statement for a debilitating medical condition, as well as a photo of themselves and a copy of their Montana state ID. If the applicant is a minor, a legal guardian must register as a provider. The physician must be one that the patient has been treated by and that is approved by the state of Montana to provide medical marijuana recommendations. In the recommendation, the physician must specify which condition the applicant has, why and how it is debilitating, and describe past medications and treatments that the patient has used which were not effective.
If applying to grow their own marijuana, the applicant must include a notarized property owner permission form.
The application fee for a medical marijuana fee is $30.
On January 1, 2021, it will become legal for Montana residents to possess, purchase, obtain, use, ingest, or transport up to 1 ounce of marijuana and to cultivate it at home. Montana’s Department of Revenue must establish rules and regulations for cannabis dispensaries by October 1st, 2021.
On Election Day 2020, Montana voters approved two ballot initiatives to legalize cannabis in the state. They include Initiative 190, which legalizes adult-use possession and provides for the licensure and regulation of cultivation and sales, and a second initiative, CI-118, which sets the legal age for purchasing and possessing marijuana to 21.
Known as the “Montana Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act,” I-90 provides for “the licensure and regulation of commercial, cultivation, manufacture, production, distribution, and sale of marijuana and marijuana-infused products” and approves “legal possession and use of limited amounts of marijuana legal for adults 21 years of age or older.” Under Section 27 of I-90, the state will impose a tax of 20% on retail marijuana sales. Section 36 of the bill will allow people to petition for the expungement of marijuana crimes or for resentencing.
The law will allow anyone over the age of 21 to possess up to 1 ounce of marijuana, but no more than 8 grams of concentrate. The law also allows for the home cultivation of up to four mature marijuana plants.
As per the state of Montana, the qualifying conditions for which patients can receive medical cannabis include:
- Positive status for human immunodeficiency virus or acquired immune deficiency syndrome when the condition or disease results in symptoms that seriously and adversely affect the patient’s health status
- Cachexia or wasting syndrome
- Severe chronic pain that is persistent pain of severe intensity that significantly interferes with daily activities as documented by the patient’s treating physician
- Intractable nausea or vomiting
- Epilepsy or an intractable seizure disorder
- Multiple sclerosis
- Crohn’s disease
- Painful peripheral neuropathy
- A central nervous system disorder resulting in chronic, painful spasticity or muscle spasms
- Admittance into hospice care
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Where to Buy
Patients in Montana can purchase flowers, edibles, and concentrates for medicinal use at the state’s dispensaries.
If the user doesn’t want to purchase from licensed providers, the law allows them to possess up to four mature plants, four seedlings “and the amount of usable marijuana allowed by the department by rule.”
Montana does not recognize out-of-state medical marijuana licenses.
Taxes and Medical Marijuana in Montana
There is a 4% tax on marijuana and marijuana products in Montana.
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