Updated on June 22, 2020. Medical content reviewed by Dr. Joseph Rosado, MD, M.B.A, Chief Medical Officer
Department of Public Safety
Vermont Marijuana Registry
45 State Drive
Waterbury, VT 05671-1300
Phone: (802) 241-5115
Fax: (802) 241-5230
Website: Vermont Marijuana Registry Program
As legislation changes in Vermont, check back to this section for information about how those legislative changes will affect the medical marijuana program in Vermont.
Note from State, on sources for medical marijuana
“The Marijuana Registry is neither a source for marijuana nor can the Registry provide information to patients on how to obtain marijuana” [Accessed Mar. 1, 2016]
The Vermont Marijuana Registry is mandatory and does NOT accept other state’s registry cards.
The Vermont medical marijuana program became even stronger in 2016 when Gov. Peter Shumlin signed a bill into law that not only made cannabis available to more patients but also reduced the wait to qualify for this therapeutic form of medicine. Glaucoma was added as a qualifying condition, and the “severe pain” condition was changed to “chronic pain.”
In addition, the law removed the phrase “without success” in regard to qualifying for medical marijuana in Vermont. The reason this is significant is that many patients can find success using powerful medications such as opioids to treat pain. However, these drugs can be addictive, and they also pose a high risk of a potentially fatal overdose. By removing that phrase from the law, patients no longer have to try dangerous drugs before being able to use medicinal cannabis.
The new law also reduces the time it takes for a patient to have to establish a relationship with a physician before receiving a medical cannabis recommendation. Before, patients had to have that relationship for six months. The new law reduces that to three months.
Vermont has historically been one of the more progressive states when it comes to making medical cannabis available to seriously ill patients. After Senate Bill 76 was approved by 22-7, and House Bill 645 was approved by 82-59, Sec. 1. 18V.S.A. chapter 86 was passed by the General Assembly. On May 26, 2004, Governor James Douglas (R) allowed the “Act Relating to Marijuana Use by Persons with Severe Illness”, to pass into law unsigned, effective July 01, 2004, essentially removing state-level criminal penalties on the use and possession of marijuana, by patients in possession of a written letter from a physician stating that, he or she may benefit from the medical use of marijuana, for alleviating symptoms caused by debilitating medical conditions and their medical treatments.
On May 30, 2007, Senate Bill 00007, amended the law, establishing the requirement for bonafide physician-patient relationship, no less than six months duration, in the course of which physicians are required to complete a full assessment of the registered patient’s medical history and current medical conditions.
On June 02, 2011, Senate Bill 17, was signed by Governor Peter Shumlin, amending the law, to establish “An Act Relating To Registering Four Nonprofit Organizations To Dispense Marijuana For Symptom Relief”, implementing a framework for registering up to four nonprofit marijuana dispensaries in the state. The bill allows licensed dispensaries to cultivate and possess no more than, twenty-eight (28) mature cannabis plants, ninety-eight (98) immature marijuana plants, and twenty-eight (28) ounces of usable medical marijuana.
On September 12, 2012, it was announced that two medical marijuana dispensaries had been granted conditional approval by the State of Vermont Department of Public Safety. And in June 2013, both medical marijuana dispensaries, both legally opened to qualified patients.
Vermont, “Act Relating to Marijuana Use by Persons with Severe Illness,” legally allows registered patients and registered caregivers, to collectively cultivate no more than two (2) mature plants and nine (9) immature plants, and may possess no more than two (2) ounces of usable marijuana.