Marijuana and Georgia Drug Courts
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Georgia drug courts are a subsection of Georgia’s Accountability Courts. Like all Accountability Courts, drug courts refer perpetrators to treatment programs rather than prison. Jurisdictions that have drug courts receive direction and assistance from the Judicial Council Standing Committee on Drug Courts. Drug courts are a relatively new part of our judicial system, with the first drug courts coming in to use in some states only in the 1990s. Drug courts have been shown to reduce the rate of recidivism and cost to taxpayers when compared to conventional penalties that include prison sentences.
The specific operations of each Georgia drug treatment court vary by jurisdiction. If you would like to learn more about Georgia drug courts or locate the nearest one, consult the Georgia Accountability Courts website. In the case of a marijuana offense, drug courts will typically refer participants to a marijuana program in order to treat their marijuana dependence rather than punish them for it. Georgia marijuana rehabilitation centers and programs are not always run by the state, but they must adhere to state guidelines in order to qualify as a drug court program. Programs for felony marijuana offenses typically run 24 to 30 months.
The benefits of participating in Georgia drug court and successfully completing a program may include:
- Having your marijuana charges dismissed
- The dismissal of charges relating to nonviolent property damage stemming from drug use
- A greater chance that you will remain drug-free, thanks to the lower recidivism rate
Several factors, however, can disqualify marijuana offenders from being able to participate in Georgia drug court, including:
- Having been charged with a violent crime or the threat of a violent crime
- Having a history of drug selling offenses or having been charged with a drug selling offense
- Having been charged with a marijuana offense other than possession
- Having prior drug convictions
Even in cases with seemingly light penalties for marijuana possession, participating in Georgia drug court or a Georgia marijuana treatment program can be a great benefit for individuals charged with drug offenses. Successfully completing these programs means you will not have a conviction on your record, so you may not have to report the drug offense you were charged with on job, school, and licensing applications.
Follow this link for more information about Georgia Marijuana and Medical Marijuana Laws.