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How Old Do You Have to Be to Smoke Weed in Rhode Island?

As cannabis laws evolve in states across America with each passing election, you may be wondering how old you have to be to smoke weed in Rhode Island. Currently, only medical marijuana (MM) is legal in the Ocean State, as residents voted to pass The Edward O. Hawkins and Thomas C. Slater Medical Marijuana Act in 2006, but a measure to allow the herb's recreational use may appear on the 2018 ballot. The state also lessened the penalty for adults caught with less than one ounce of cannabis in their possession to a civil penalty and $150 citation, though minors caught with a bit of weed must also appear in family court.

Rhode Island's Medical Marijuana Act permits Ocean State residents who are at least 18 years of age to obtain an MM card and use cannabis medicinally. Rhode Island is also one of the few states that allows for adults from other states with a valid MM card  to smoke weed or otherwise consume the herb. Rhode Island residents who are under the age of 18 and have a qualifying MM condition, however, must appoint a legal guardian (who is at least 21 years old) to act as a caregiver if they want to use cannabis.

Residents and visitors to the Ocean State that have a state-issued MM card can purchase up to 2 ½ ounces of cannabis from one of a few state-licensed dispensaries, which are known as “compassion centers.” Patients are permitted to have up to 12 mature plants and up to 12 seedlings, but the entire crop must be in the same indoor location. Adult MM patients can cultivate their cannabis plants collectively in a shared facility, though there are different limitations for residential and non-residential locations.

However, just because you're 18 years old and have a valid MM card doesn't mean you can smoke anywhere you please in Rhode Island. The Ocean State limits the use of cannabis to private property, and it's illegal if you're caught smoking weed or under the herb's influence while operating a motorized vehicle

To end, it's important to remember that transporting cannabis products across state lines in any way violates federal law, and if you do so, you risk receiving hefty fines and jail time. You can learn more about the Ocean State's rules on medical marijuana by contacting the Rhode Island Department of Health.


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