Maryland Medical Marijuana Lawyer
Medical marijuana, otherwise known as medical cannabis, is simply marijuana that is grown by a company or an individual who is licensed to grow, cultivate, manufacture, dispense or produce marijuana in Maryland, which will be ultimately used by registered medical marijuana or medical cannabis patients in Maryland.
If you wish to know more about medical marijuana, retain the services of a Maryland medical marijuana lawyer. A knowledgeable Maryland lawyer can answer your questions and ensure that your rights are protected.
What is the Natalie M. LaPrade Medical Cannabis Commission?
The Natalie M. LaPrade Medical Cannabis Commission is an independent body within the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. It was created by the Maryland General Assembly.
The purpose of the commission is to develop policies, procedures, guidelines, and regulations that implement programs that make medical marijuana or medical cannabis available to patients who qualify under Maryland law in a safe and effective manner.
The commission is responsible for developing medical marijuana patient identification cards for patients and for caregivers. It was also the body that established the regulations that implement the medical marijuana program in Maryland.
Motivation for a Maryland Medical Marijuana Program
In addition to it being quite clear that the people of Maryland wanted a medical marijuana program, there are other policy reasons that have led jurisdictions like Maryland to implement medical marijuana programs as well.
For example, many jurisdictions have realized that the marijuana laws have been unfairly enforced and that, as a result, African-Americans and other minorities have been disproportionately incarcerated.
Another policy reason is purely monetary. Many jurisdictions have realized that it does not make a lot of sense to spend so much of its budget and resources on enforcing marijuana laws and incarcerating individuals who break those laws when they could be receiving tax revenues instead.
Finally, the evidence that marijuana can assist patients who are suffering from debilitating diseases such as cancer, HIV, AIDS, and epilepsy just to name a few makes it much more difficult to support a policy that keeps marijuana away from those that it could benefit.
The Maryland Medical Marijuana Commission may inspect a licensed medical marijuana or medical cannabis processing facility to ensure that it meets the standards for licensure set out by the law and regulations of Maryland.
Law Enforcement Officers in Maryland and Medical Marijuana Encounters
Under the laws of the State of Maryland, medical marijuana or medical cannabis patients, qualified physicians recommending medical marijuana or medical cannabis to their patients and licensed growers, cultivators, processors and dispensaries of medical marijuana or medical cannabis are all exempt from arrest, prosecution or penalty for possessing or distributing medical marijuana or medical cannabis as long as that individual or company is in compliance with the state’s various medical marijuana or medical cannabis laws and regulations.
That being said, it is important to remember that the federal government does not recognize medical marijuana or medical cannabis yet. As a result, those in the medical marijuana or medical cannabis industry and those who use medical cannabis or medical marijuana may still be subject to federal arrest or prosecution. This threat is especially poignant for companies and individuals in Maryland due to their proximity to the nation’s capital which is why it is vital that an individual secure the services of a Maryland medical marijuana lawyer.
THC stands for tetrahydrocannabinol, the active ingredient in marijuana or cannabis. Patients may ask their physicians to recommend THC to treat many different conditions. Some examples include pain management, headaches or any other debilitating chronic disease.
THC is measured for volume or weight of the sample at issue. The potency is measured in mg/g of the sample.
This rule of thumb applies across the board for loose marijuana or cannabis, marijuana or cannabis tinctures, marijuana or cannabis oils, marijuana or cannabis concentrates, marijuana or cannabis edibles and marijuana or cannabis drinks.
CBD stands for cannabidiol. CBD is most well-known for being used by patients who are suffering from epilepsy because it appears to have certain anti-seizure properties.
Unfortunately, due to marijuana status as a Schedule I narcotic, it has been difficult for American researchers to effectively study all the potential uses of CBD. Hopefully, however, this will change in the near future.
THC and CBD are similar but not identical chemical compounds. THC turns into CBD and vice versa based on the way the atoms are organized.
Obstacles Working in the Realm of Medical Marijuana
From a patient and physician point of view, the biggest obstacle to overcome when working in the realm of medical marijuana or medical cannabis is the social taboo against the drug. For many years, marijuana was viewed as a so-called gateway drug that had little to no therapeutic value. This misconception is slowly changing, thanks in part to the hard work of so many in the medical marijuana or medical cannabis field and also to the medical marijuana or medical cannabis patients and their advocates.
Obstacles as a Business Person
From a business point of view, the biggest obstacle to overcome when working in the realm of medical marijuana or medical cannabis are the many laws and regulations in place that must be complied with. This is a newly emerging industry and it’s already one of the most highly regulated industries in the country. It can be an enormous challenge for entrepreneurs who are trying to get their first medical marijuana or medical cannabis business off the ground and keep up with the ever evolving laws and regulations put in place in Maryland.
One example is the strictness of the banking regulations that have been put in place. Many banks will refuse to work with companies that are in the cannabis industry as clients because they fear being prosecuted federally for money laundering or other federal charges.
Although it may be understandable that banks choose to err on the side of caution, it can also lead to a very challenging environment for medical cannabis and medical marijuana companies, patients and physicians.
Value of a Maryland Medical Marijuana Lawyer
Knowledgeable and experienced legal counsel can also help companies in the medical marijuana and medical cannabis industry structure their businesses to avoid any non-compliance with these laws and regulations.
Although marijuana has been decriminalized in Maryland, you can still be prosecuted for marijuana possession, even if it is for medicinal purposes. If you have been charged with possession, or if you wish to know more about medical marijuana and its legality, get in touch with a skilled Maryland medical marijuana lawyer who can advocate for you.