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Marijuana Possession


West Palm Beach Marijuana Possession Attorney David W. Olson

As marijuana for an array of uses is increasingly legalized across the United States, Florida continues to undergo reform. In 2016, state law passed Amendment 2. This established a medical marijuana program for qualified patients as implemented by the Office of Medical Marijuana Use within the Florida Department of Health.

However, should a law enforcement officer deem arrest necessary, the conviction for unlawfully possessing even the tiniest amount of marijuana can potentially result in jail, fines, driver’s license suspension and other court sanctions. If you were arrested for the unlawful possession of marijuana, it is advisable to hire an experienced marijuana and drug offense lawyer as soon as possible.

Florida Marijuana Statute

Current Florida law regarding medical marijuana usage is riddled with definitions and strict stipulations regarding the acquisition, possession, and use of the drug. Florida Statue 381.986 defines marijuana as:

“…all parts of any plant of the genus Cannabis, whether growing or not… including low-THC cannabis, which are dispensed from a medical marijuana treatment center for medical use by a qualified patient.”

The “medical use” of marijuana is as defined as:

“…the acquisition, possession, use, delivery, transfer, or administration of marijuana authorized by a physician certification.”

Who Is Qualified to Register for Medical Marijuana?

Medical marijuana has become accessible to those who have the certification of a licensed physician saying that the individual suffers from a debilitating condition. Patients are able to purchase this marijuana from registered dispensaries. These conditions may include but are not limited to:

  1. “…has a high potential for abuse…” and,
  2. “…has no currently accepted medical use…” (Of course, countless patients in medical marijuana states applaud its benefits, including for cancer pain, glaucoma treatment, Parkinson’s disease, epileptic seizures, digestive disorders and more).

Possession of Less Than 20 Grams of Marijuana

A conviction for possession of less than 20 grams of cannabis can potentially result in the following:

  • Cancer
  • Epilepsy
  • Glaucoma
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
  • Chronic Pain

Possession of Less Than 20 Grams of Marijuana

A conviction for unlawful possession of less than 20 grams of cannabis can potentially result in the following:

  • First degree misdemeanor offense
  • Jail – up to one year
  • Fines – up to $1,000
  • Driver’s license suspension – up to two years
  • Criminal record

Possession of More than 20 Grams of Marijuana

If an individual is convicted of unlawfully possessing more than 20 grams of marijuana, this can potentially result in:

  • Third degree felony offense
  • Prison – up to five years
  • Fines – up to $5,000
  • Driver’s license suspension – two years
  • Criminal record

Possession of Marijuana Plants

A conviction for the unlawful possession of marijuana plants can potentially result in harsh penalties, including, but not limited to:

  • Less than 25 plants – 5 years prison, $5,000 fine, 2-year driver’s license suspension, criminal record
  • 25 or more plants – 15 years prison, $10,000 fine, 2-year driver’s license suspension, criminal record

Additional Possible Consequences Resulting from a Drug Conviction in Florida

Unfortunately, a drug conviction may also potentially result in other serious consequences. A few possible examples include:

  • Employment difficulties – many private and government employers will not hire drug offenders
  • Professional licensure – a conviction often leads to loss of state, federal and/or local licensure
  • Housing limitations – strict public housing ordinances may prohibit drug offenders from renting or buying property; additionally, many institutions will not loan money to drug offenders
  • Firearm prohibition – potential lifetime ban
  • Education – financial aid, loans, scholarships and other opportunities may be refused
  • Many others consequences result from felony drug convictions – ask your attorney

How an Experienced Marijuana Possession Attorney Can Help You

An arrest for possession of marijuana is not a conviction. The prosecution has to prove that you are guilty of the offense. Depending on the circumstances of your case, your attorney may choose to challenge the validity of your arrest and/or various aspects of your case. He may examine the following issues:

  • Were any of your Constitutional rights violated?
  • Was the search legal to begin with?
  • Was the arrest lawful in all ways?
  • Did the arresting officer actually have probable cause?
  • Was proper procedure followed at all times in your case?
  • Were you actually in possession of an alleged illegal substance?
  • Are you a registered patient for medical marijuana use?
  • Was the evidence properly procured, handled and secured?
  • Were there witnesses whose testimony can aid in your defense?

The Law Offices of David W. Olson – Representing Clients with Marijuana and All Drug Charges

Attorney Olson has successfully represented thousands of clients charged with drug and other misdemeanor and felony offenses during his 38 years of practice and legal penal member of NORML, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. In many instances Attorney Olson has been able to get the prosecution to entirely drop the charge if it’s misdemeanor marijuana possession only. In fact, Attorney Olson will always strive for a dismissal of charges whenever possible.
David Olson is a devoted criminal defense lawyer who will do everything lawfully and ethically possible to help you successfully resolve your legal matter. He will always seek the most efficacious and positive result for you. He is here to serve his clients in their time of great need.  Attorney Olson represents clients in West Palm Beach, Palm Beach County, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, South Florida and throughout the state. For a complimentary and confidential case review, call The Law Offices of David W. Olson at 561-833-8866.


Florida Statutes, Chapter 893, (2014)

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