The time is drawing near: Medical marijuana patients and caregivers will no longer be prosecuted by the federal government

Jay Leiderman
By: Jay Leiderman
December 16 2014

When someone comes to me to consult about medical marijuana compliance, the first thing I always say is that whatever we talk about here today, nothing will make you complaint with Federal law. With one signature from Barack Obama, that will draw to a close. In a new bill that awaits the POTUS’s signature, the Federal Government will be prohibited from going after complaint patients and caregivers. This is a quantum leap forward for both the House and the Senate. It has long been the case that DOJ has said that they will mostly refrain from prosecuting patients and caregivers “unequivocally” in compliance with state law, but those memos, known as the Ogden and Cole memos, are only advisory, and discretion is vested in the prosecutors themselves. This bill would prohibit prosecution as a frivolous waste of money.

Here’s to a long awaited change in the law. In that the Department of Justice has had these memos in place for years and AG Eric Holder would have run such a memo by the President, it is presumed that this bill would be signed. However, this is today’s Washington, so expect nothing and brace for the worst. If signed, this is a big step toward re-scheduling marijuana to a schedule 3 substance. This is where marijuana has always belonged.

In California this clearly means that anyone in compliance with the CUA, commonly known as Prop 215, will not be prosecuted. The MMPA, commonly called SB 420 is a bit more tricky. As the MMPA allows collective cultivation, it would seem that this is arguably not covered by the new bill. Take a look at the book I authored on medical marijuana law in California to learn more on the issue.

To schedule a consultation with the best medical marijuana attorney in Ventura County, California, State Bar Certified Criminal Law Specialist Jay Leiderman, click here and then call 805-654-0200. Jay is a lifetime member of the NORML Legal Committee.

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Attorneys who specialize in marijuana cases say a “bizarre” conflict that allows medical marijuana under state laws but prohibits it under federal law could be coming to a close.

In a federal spending bill, Congress said it would prohibit the U.S. Department of Justice from going after medical-marijuana patients or caregivers who are compliant with their state’s laws. The bill awaits the president’s signature.

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