Drug Crimes Lawyer Representing Individuals in Ann Arbor, Detroit, Grand Rapids, Lansing and Throughout Michigan
In 2008, the MMMA ( Michigan Medical Marihuana Act ) was enacted in our state, allowing licensed patients and caregivers to legally possess, grow and/or distribute medical marijuana under state laws. However, this has not protected innocent individuals from harassment and arrest, as many authorities do not agree with this law. Police, prosecutors and judges still aggressively pursue those who possess, grow or distribute marijuana, even though they are doing so legally. At Grabel & Associates, our Michigan medical marijuana attorneys know that often times law enforcement and prosecutors act as though they are unaware of the changes. Certainly, the number of charges and arrests made in Michigan since the approval of medical marijuana has not decreased. Whether you have been arrested for any marijuana related drug crime and are a cardholder or non-cardholder, we can help.
Make Sure You Fully Understand the Rules and Regulations Regarding Medical Marijuana
Individuals who are patients or caregivers and are already enrolled or who plan to enroll must thoroughly understand the law; otherwise, you could easily be subject to the penalties imposed upon individuals who possess, cultivate or distribute marijuana for purposes other than for medical use. Although medical marijuana has been approved in the state of Michigan, federal law still prohibits marijuana; ultimately this means even if you are in compliance with Michigan laws, you could still face federal charges.
Some of the administrative rules regarding participation in and enforcement of MMMA include:
- Age requirements
- Registration and registration fees
- Medical conditions
- Physician certification
Two groups of individuals are authorized under MMMA to engage in the acquisition, cultivation, manufacture, possession, transportation or use of marijuana or related paraphernalia necessary for administration to patients with debilitating conditions or symptoms related to those medical conditions: the patient, and the caregiver. Under the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act, caregivers must be 21 years of age with no felony drug conviction on their criminal record. As a primary caregiver, an individual may charge a reasonable fee for services and assist as many as five patients simultaneously.
Patients must qualify for protection under MMMA, and there are guidelines for determining whether a patient qualifies. A physician must diagnose the patient as having a debilitating medical condition. Some conditions considered debilitating include: cancer, HIV or AIDS, glaucoma, Alzheimer's disease, hepatitis C, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and Crohn's disease. Other conditions which cause severe and/or chronic pain, seizures, severe nausea or severe muscle spasms may also be authorized by the state of Michigan.
Qualification for Medical Marijuana Use Does Not Protect You from Arrest or Prosecution
Unfortunately, Michigan's medical marijuana laws are poorly written, making it difficult to understand and confusing. However, it is unequivocally clear that medical patients and caregivers cannot sell or distribute marijuana to individuals who are not registered as a patient with the state. Doing so is illegal. Even if you are approved for medical marijuana use, you will face a fine of up to $2,000 and up to two years in prison if you break this law. Even worse, overzealous prosecutors frequently charge individuals under the existing marijuana laws, which means an individual who is qualified to possess, cultivate or distribute marijuana and who is caught selling or distributing to those who are not patients may face four years in prison and a fine of up to $20,000. Penalties can be even harsher, depending upon the amount of marijuana involved.
Under the MMMA, caregivers may possess up to 2.5 ounces of actual marijuana and 12 marijuana plants to be used for medical use. Even though you may be totally in compliance with the law, police officers may claim that you have more than the legal limit in an effort to charge you with a criminal offense.
Hire an Aggressive Michigan Medical Marijuana Defense Attorney to Protect Your Legal Rights
It is critical that you consult with a skilled lawyer who thoroughly understands the Medical Marijuana Act. Even if you have not been arrested but plan to enroll and want to ensure you understand the law, contact the experienced attorneys at Grabel & Associates. If you have been arrested for any marijuana offense whether medical or otherwise, it is critical that you have a capable and aggressive Michigan drug crime defense lawyer on your side. Contact us today at 1-800-342-7896.