The possession and trafficking of illegal drugs can result in serious consequences like fines and jail time. However, because the laws around marijuana are changing, confusion over what you can expect if you are caught with cannabis is only natural.
Is Weed Legal in Maryland?
As of 2019, the possession of marijuana has been decriminalized in the state of Maryland. Legislation was passed back in 2014 that decriminalized the possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana. Previously, in 2013, a medical marijuana program was also passed. Unlike legalization, decriminalization still comes with a penalty if you are caught. So, the short answer is no. Weed is not legal in the state of Maryland.
What Are the Penalties for Getting Caught with Marijuana in Maryland?
If you are caught with 10 grams or less of marijuana then you may be subject to a fine up to $100. The penalty for the possession of marijuana paraphernalia or smoking marijuana in public is a fine up to $500 as of 2016. For possession of more than 10 grams of marijuana, you will be charged with a misdemeanor and may face jail time and higher fines. Trafficking of marijuana is also punishable with criminal charges, jail time, and fines.
How Does the New Legislation Affect Previous Convictions?
If you were convicted of marijuana-related offense that is no longer a criminal offense, then your records are eligible for expungement. For those of you who have a record for a crime that has not been reclassified, you must wait 10 years to apply for expungement. In the event that you do not have your record expunged, you could face higher penalties because your subsequent offenses will continue to stack. If you’re not sure whether or not you can apply to have your records expunged, contact us today for more information.
Work with a Drug Crimes Lawyer in Essex, Maryland
If you have been charged with a drug-related crime in Essex, Maryland, then call on the expertise of Ross W. Albers. He can help you navigate your case and address your concerns about a possible conviction. Contact us today to learn more and to set up a free consultation to go over the details of your case.