Is Weed Legal in Washington? | Cannabis Legalization

Is recreational cannabis legal in Washington? Is medicinal marijuana legal in Washington? What about Washington's CBD laws? Find out about the weed laws in Washington in this article.

Washington, nicknamed the evergreen state for its vast population of lush greenery and voluminous forests that expand farther than the eye can see, is well known for many fascinating things.

There's the iconic space needle in Seattle, which stands at a dizzying height of 605 feet. There's also the fact that Washington is also the birthplace of Starbucks Coffee, which started right in the heart of the Pikes Place Market in Seattle in 1971. Uniquely, Washington is the only state in the US that is named after an American President.

The state of Washington is home to a diverse community of farmers that cultivate things like lavender, asparagus, and mushrooms. Washington also produces more apples than any other state in the country.  In addition to horticulture and historical landmarks, the evergreen state is rich with Native American culture and houses 29 different Native Tribes in the region.

Washington is a superb place to live and visit, but are Washington's laws on cannabis synonymous with its "evergreen" nickname?

Let us dive into this article and find out the laws regarding cannabis in Washington.

Is recreational weed legal Washington?

Washingtonians and visitors alike can rest assured that recreational weed is very much legal in Washington. Initiative 502 rendered weed legal for recreational purposes in 2012, making it the first state in America to legalize recreational weed. Since then, adults over the age of 21 are free to purchase and possess cannabis in the state of Washington. However, purchases are limited to 1 ounce of flower, 16 ounces of cannabis-infused edibles, or 7 grams of cannabis in concentrated form, and it must be consumed within a private residence away from public view. So, unfortunately, climbing to the top of the Space Needle and sparking up a joint is not permitted.

Washington is actually one of the most cannabis-friendly states in America. Since the inception of legal recreational weed, those who wish to visit the state in the purpose of cannabis consumption, can do so by booking cannabis tours, staying at cannabis-friendly hotels, and stopping by one of Seattle's renowned cannabis-themed festivals.  

Despite the friendly attitude towards cannabis, it is important to know that driving under the influence of marijuana is absolutely prohibited. Cannabis cannot be transferred interstate either. Disobeying these laws can stick you with some pretty harsh penalties. The consumption of cannabis is also illegal on federal ground, so if one plans on visiting some native tribal areas, it's best to put the doobie down and save it for later.

Is medicinal marijuana legal in Washington?

Washington is one of the most pro-cannabis states, and as such medicinal marijuana is legal in the evergreen state. In fact, Washington was one of the first states in the US to legalize medical marijuana. Initiative 692 was passed by voters in 1998, making marijuana legal for medicinal purposes.

There are some barriers to obtaining a medical marijuana card in Washington. In order to qualify, one must have debilitating diseases such as cancer, glaucoma, or anorexia. Once a medical marijuana card has been attained, one is allowed to possess 3 ounces of dried flower or 21 grams of concentrate, and they can also cultivate up to 6 plants in their respective household. On the grounds of where they have been entered into the medical marijuana authorisation database. Medical marijuana cards allow a person to purchase up to 3 times more than a recreational user so cultivation may be unnecessary for most.

Most dispensaries in the state of Washington are both recreational and medical retailers however, having a medical card designates access to higher medical quality cannabis. In 2019 there was an estimated 492 cannabis retailers in the state.

Is CBD legal in Washington?

Recreational weed and medical marijuana are legal in Washington and that goes for CBD as well. CBD from hemp was legalized on a federal level in the United States by the passing of the Farm Bill in 2018. Since then, every state allows for the purchase and possession of CBD infused products.

States where recreational weed is illegal only allow CBD to be accessed from the hemp plant, and can only contain 0.3% THC. However, because Washington is legal in all aspects of cannabis, CBD can be from either hemp or cannabis, and the levels of THC are not restricted. Just as long as the CBD is sold at a state-authorised dispensary. CBD provided by regular retailers are only permitted to sell hemp-derived CBD. Residents of Washington are allowed to possess up to 72 ounces of CBD oil at any one time.

Since the enactment of the Farm Bill retailers all over Washington have begun to stock and sell CBD. If one is looking for CBD infused products they can find it nearly everywhere in the state. Although, It is important to know where it's coming from. The purchase of CBD products that haven't been properly inspected by state health officials is not recommended.

CBD comes in many forms which include, drinks, edibles, oils, tinctures, and topicals. CBD has been shown to be beneficial for those who suffer from ailments such as, chronic pain, epilepsy, cancers, and post-traumatic stress disorder.

The CBD market in Washington is absolutely booming, and at the rate it's going, the production of CBD may overtake apples in the evergreen state.

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Casey Peternell
Casey Peternell

Casey is a media and content creator with a keen eye for creativity. Casey is currently in the process of obtaining a double bachelors degree in Media & Communications and Business from Swinburne University in Melbourne.

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