Cooperation or Not? Please Keep Quiet—Usually
January 1, 2016
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Marijuana Use and the District of Columbia

The law regarding the possession and use of marijuana in the District of Columbia seems destined to cause substantial confusion.  Under the law, an individual 21 years of age or older may possess or transport two ounces or less of marijuana.  What does this allow you to do?

  • You may grow, harvest or process up to six cannabis plants within your principal residence;
  • You may possess the appropriate paraphernalia associated with using the marijuana;
  • You may smoke inside your residence (but you should check the terms of your lease regarding drug usage); and
  • You may transfer one ounce or less of marijuana to another person who is also 21 years of age or older.

However, YOU MAY NOT

  • Possess more than two ounces of marijuana;
  • Sell or give any amount of marijuana in exchange for money, goods or services;
  • Smoke or otherwise consume marijuana in a public space including street, alley or park;
  • Smoke in any vehicle; or
  • Smoke in any place to which the public is invited.

The law outlined above is applicable throughout the District of Columbia.  However, much of the District of Columbia is actually federal property and marijuana is still a Schedule 1 narcotic under federal law.  Therefore, if you are visiting your congressman, going to the Smithsonian Museum, or attending a concert on the mall, leave your marijuana at home.  You do not want to be the test case for harsher treatment under federal law.      

Remember, if you are under 21, just say “No.”      

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