Pennsylvania Marijuana Laws: Is Marijuana Legal in Pennsylvania?

Possession of marijuana is illegal in Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania lags behind many other states in decriminalizing personal use of marijuana. As such, any amount of marijuana possessed can result in a jail term. Currently, there are twin bills making their way through Pennsylvania’s House and Senate that would legalize medicinal marijuana. Due to the complicated nature of drug laws in the U.S., even if medicinal marijuana were made legal according to Pennsylvania state law, it would still be illegal under federal law.

What are the Penalties for the Possession of Marijuana in Pennsylvania?

If you are arrested for charges relating to Pennsylvania possession of marijuana, the penalties you face often depend on the amount of marijuana you possessed at the time of arrest, and what your intended use was for that marijuana. Unlike many other states, Pennsylvania law does not differentiate between the possession of plants and ready-to-use marijuana. Hence, Pennsylvania’s marijuana penalties are based entirely on weight. Those convicted will face fines and/or incarceration, as well as possible marijuana treatment programs.

Obviously, the more you possess, the steeper the penalties. Also, you will face harsher penalties if the government can show you intended to sell the marijuana, rather than simply use it personally. Possession of synthetic forms of marijuana (tetrahydrocannabinols) or concentrated marijuana (hashish) often warrants stiffer penalties than possession of organic marijuana. However, the substance K2, which is a marijuana imitator, remains legal in Pennsylvania.

Being charged with attempt to distribute (or sell) marijuana in Pennsylvania does not require being caught in the act. Simply possessing large amounts of marijuana, or related equipment and drug paraphernalia, can be enough to merit a charge. The table below details the specific Pennsylvania penalties for acts related to the possession and distribution of marijuana under Pennsylvania law. Keep in mind that individuals may also face separate penalties under federal law. Speak with an experienced Pennsylvania criminal attorney today to understand your rights and the extent of the penalties you face.

Pennsylvania Marijuana Penalties Table

Activity

Amount

Incarceration

Fine (max) 3

Charge

Possession

30 g or less

30 days max

$500

Misdemeanor

More than 30 g

1 year max 1

$5,000 1

Misdemeanor

Distribution 2

Gift

30 g or less

30 days max

$500

Misdemeanor

Under 1000 lbs

3 years max

$5,000 1

Felony

Over 1000 lbs

10 years max

$100,000

Felony

  1. Second or subsequent offenses are felonies in which you may be incarcerated for up to 3 years and fined up to $25,000.
  2. A person at least 21 years old, who is not drug-dependent, that gives marijuana to a minor at least four years their junior can be charged with a felony and receive double the normal incarceration penalties.
  3. Fines may be increased to include the assets and profits from illegal marijuana sales.

Follow this link for more information about Pennsylvania Marijuana Laws and Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Laws