Legal status of marijuana in the state of Washington

Legal status of marijuana in the state of Washington


The state of Washington signed a bill back in 1996, allowing patients with a recommendation from a licensed physician to use medical marijuana without the risk of being prosecuted.

At the moment, registered patients are allowed to purchase up to 3 oz (85 grams) of usable cannabis from a licensed dispensary. A patient is also allowed to cultivate up to 6 plants at home and possess up to 8 oz of cannabis, as long as it is harvested from their own plants.

The qualifying conditions to become a medical marijuana patient in Washington state include:

  • Cancer
  • Chronic renal failure requiring dialysis
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Glaucoma
  • Hepatitis C
  • Intractable pain
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Nausea (including those caused by anorexia)
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Seizures (including those characteristic of epilepsy)
  • Spasticity disorders
  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)


Possession of small amounts of cannabis for personal usage is decriminalized in Washington for those over the age of 21. Small amounts in this case is 1 oz (28 grams) or less. Legal cannabis can only bought at a licensed dispensaries.

It is also allowed to purchase and possess up to 16 oz of marijuana-infused product in solid form, up to 72 oz of marijuana-infused product in liquid form and up to 7 grams of marijuana concentrate.

Although possession of up to 1 oz of cannabis is legal in Washington state, getting caught consuming it in public is a problem. Consumption is seen as a Civil Penalty and will get you a fine of up to $100.

Getting caught for possession with more than 1 oz, but less than 40 grams is treated as a misdemeanor and is punishable with a minimum of 24 hours, up to a maximum of 90 days in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.

More than 40 grams is considered a felony and might land you in jail for a whopping 5 years and get you a nice fine on top of up to $10,000.

We are not aware of any possible law changes in the (near) future in Washington state regarding medical and/or recreational cannabis.