You’ve visited the doctor, sent in your application, and received your medical marijuana card from the state. Congratulations - you are one of over 15,000 medical marijuana patients in Missouri! But what does that title mean?
What are the rights of a medical marijuana patient?
As a Missouri medical marijuana patient, you may legally use cannabis on your private property. You may also legally possess up to four ounces of dried marijuana, or flower. According to the Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS), only individuals with a medical marijuana card may “legally possess marijuana in accordance with 19 CSR 30-95.030.”
When dispensaries open, you’ll be able to purchase a maximum of four ounces of flower, or its equivalent, every 30 days. Most patients won’t use their whole four ounce limit per month, but others might need more. “Most folks we see here use about one ounce per month, but that amount may increase if they’re eating edibles or making their own,” states Kelli Cook, a longtime patient and dispensary co-owner of The Happiest Camper. If you think your medical condition requires you to use more than four ounces, reach out to your marijuana doctor for counseling.
At your residence, you may have up to eight ounces of flower stored. If you hire a caregiver to grow for you, either your or your caregiver may store up to 12 ounces on private property. We recommend your medicine be kept in a secure area of your house (out of reach of children and non-patients) and is clearly labeled as yours.
What are the rights of a medical marijuana cultivator?
If you opted to grow your own medicine, you have the right to grow in your home or other secure location. In your grow space, you may keep up to six flowering plants, six non-flowering plants, and six clones at any one time. You may also choose to share your space with another patient, after notifying the Department of Health and Senior Services. If you’re growing for yourself, you’re allowed to store up to 12 ounces of dried flower on your property.
You also have the option to grow for other patients besides yourself. You can apply for a caregiver’s license, and grow for up to three other patients.
Where can I get my medical marijuana?
The easiest way to get your medicine at the moment is to either grow it yourself, or find a caregiver to grow for you. Your caregiver does not necessarily have to be a fellow medical marijuana patient, although they can be a patient themselves. You could ask a friend or family member who you trust to be your caregiver and trust them with the responsibility of providing your medicine.
Many states practice a “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy while waiting for dispensaries to open, according to Morgan Fox with the National Cannabis Industry Association. Lyndall Fraker, the director of Missouri’s medical marijuana program, is a fan of the model. He reportedly said in April that Missouri plans to follow this model and give patients a “grace period” until dispensaries open in 2020. For now, the Department of Health and Senior Services cannot advise patients on where to buy seeds or purchase medicine, but patients are not expected to reveal their source to officials, thus avoiding self-incrimination. If you have further questions, reach out to DHSS by emailing MedicalMarijuanaInfo@health.mo.gov. You may also reach out to your lawyer with specific legal questions.
Learn more here about getting your medical marijuana card!