Updated on May 11, 2020.
Medical content reviewed by Dr. Joseph Rosado, MD, M.B.A, Chief Medical Officer
Georgia Medical Marijuana Facts
In 2020 the Georgia General Assembly updated a bill permitting the production and sale of medical marijuana. Now a handful of companies will be licensed to cultivate medical marijuana, which can have no more than 5% THC, the compound that gives marijuana users a high.
Georgia’s medical marijuana law allows certain qualified persons to legally possess up to 20 fluid ounces of “low THC oil,” which is derived from the marijuana plant.
Until recently one of the more frustrating medical marijuana facts for Georgia is that certain patients suffering from serious diseases can obtain cannabis, but the system makes it extremely difficult to do so. State law did not allow for the sale, cultivation or processing of weed within Georgia’s boundaries. As a result, patients or their caregivers or loved ones have to try to purchase it elsewhere and then try to bring it across state lines. This, of course, poses a great deal of risk.
As of now, patients who have certain illnesses are allowed to possess cannabidiol (CBD) oil under a law that was passed in 2015. In 2017 a bill was introduced to expand the system to allow people suffering from diseases such as AIDS, cancer, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), multiple sclerosis and others to obtain CBD oil. However, until recently, there was no movement toward allowing the sale or cultivation of cannabis inside the state.
Marijuana Facts for Georgia
- The state of Georgia allows the conditional release or alternative or diversion sentencing for individuals who are facing their first prosecution ever. Usually, a conditional release lets an individual opt for probation rather than going to trial. After an individual has successfully completed probation, their criminal record does not reflect the charge.
- When an individual is convicted of an offense that is punishable by a mandatory minimum sentence, the judge must sentence the defendant to the mandatory minimum sentence time, or to a longer duration of a higher sentence. The state judge does not have the power to sentence the defendant to less time than the mandatory minimum sentence time that has been already set in place by the state of Georgia.
- Among the most troubling of Georgia’s marijuana facts is that possessing as little as an ounce or fewer of weed can be punishable by a jail term as long as a year and a fine of as much as $1,000. Possession of more than an ounce is considered a felony, resulting in a jail term of anywhere from one to 10 years.
- The state of Georgia has a zero-tolerance policy per se in regards to drugged driving, after initially enacting a law to enforce this issue. In their strictest form these laws, that were set in place by Georgia legislature, forbids drivers from operating a motor vehicle if they have any detectable level of an illicit drug or drug metabolite in their body fluids.
- Georgia has a marijuana tax stamp law that has been enacted. This marijuana tax stamp mandates that those who possess marijuana are legally required to purchase and affix state-issued stamps onto his or her contraband. The failure to do so will result in that individual receiving a fine or criminal sanction.
- Marijuana was detected frequently among adult male arrestees in Atlanta, Georgia and in 2000, approximately forty percent of adult male arrests tested positive for marijuana abuse in that city. Marijuana is also the most widely available illicit drug in the state of Georgia.
- Anyone caught cultivating 10 pounds or fewer of pot will face the felony punishment of one to 10 years in jail. Cultivation of 10-2,000 pounds is punishable by anywhere from five to 30 years in prison.
If you would like more marijuana facts for Georgia or any other state, check back with MarijuanaDoctors.com on a regular basis. We will keep you up to date regarding developments on the medical marijuana front as they warrant.