New Jersey Marijuana Laws 2023

  1. New Jersey Cannabis
  2. New Jersey Marijuana Laws

Key Points

  • Marijuana is legal for both medical and adult recreational use.
  • The legal age to purchase and use recreational and medical cannabis is 21.
  • It is legal to possess 6 ounces or less of recreational cannabis. It is a felony to possess above 6 ounces.
  • There are penalties, including fines and jail time, for the unlawful possession, sale, and cultivation of marijuana.

Is Marijuana Legal in New Jersey?

Yes, the medical and recreational use of marijuana is legal in New Jersey. Medical marijuana became legalized in January 2010 under the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act (CUMMA). Years after, the legalization of medical marijuana paved the way for the legalization of recreational marijuana on February 22, 2021, when the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory, Enforcement Assistance, and Marketplace Modernization Act was signed. This Act legalized marijuana for personal use by adults aged 21 and older. However, its use is subject to regulation by the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission. The Act also decriminalizes the New Jersey marijuana possession and use of small amounts of marijuana and hashish and removes marijuana as a Schedule I drug. The legal sale of adult-use marijuana began in New Jersey on April 21, 2022.

New Jersey Marijuana Laws in 2023

The legalization of marijuana in New Jersey is authorized by four laws, including:

The New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act, CUMMA, decriminalizes the possession of marijuana by qualifying patients, physicians, primary caregivers, alternative treatment centers, and other entities operating in accordance with the provisions of the Act.

No changes have been made to the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act as of October 2022. The most recent amendments were made on July 2, 2019, when Governor Phil Murphy signed the Jake Honig Compassionate Use Medical Cannabis Act (Assembly No. 20) to ensure job protections and new procedures for drug testing, among other changes. Some of these provisions are as follows:

  • Workplace Anti-discrimination Provisions : The amendment to the Act now clearly prohibits employers from discriminating against employees authorized to consume marijuana for health reasons. It guides against unfavorable employment actions performed against such employees due to their status as legal medical marijuana users. CUMMA provides that employers cannot deny employment to or terminate the employment of a registered qualifying patient. A registered qualifying patient is a person who has both been authorized by a health care provider for the medical use of cannabis and has registered with the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission. The Act allows an employer to prohibit the use and possession of marijuana within the workplace environment during or outside work hours. Although there is an anti-discrimination provision, an employer is not mandated to retain an employee or do anything that would cause the employer to violate federal law or lose federal funding or contract.
  • Drug-Testing Policies : The New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act has introduced a new policy to regulate drug testing by employers on their employees and job applicants. The drug test is redefined as a test done using scientifically valid and objective testing methods and procedures. Examples of these are tests conducted using the employee's blood, urine, or saliva. Under the revision, a drug test may also be a physical evaluation by a person certified as a Workplace Impairment Recognition Expert. Suppose an employee is found to be under the influence in the workplace or during work hours after a drug test and a Recognition Expert's evaluation. In that case, the employer may take adverse action.

However, the amendment to the Act allows a legitimate medical explanation if an employee gets a positive test result. The employer is required to provide the employee or job applicant written notice of this right to explain the result. The employee that receives such notice may submit information to the employer to explain the positive test result within three business days of receiving the written notice. The proof of registration with the Cannabis Regulatory Commission or the authorization for medical cannabis issued by a health care practitioner or both may be presented with the explanation. On the other hand, within the same three business days, the employee or job applicant may request a retest of the original sample to verify the test result, but this will be at their expense.

The New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Enforcement Assistance Marketplace Modernization Act (Assembly No. 21) is the law that legalizes the recreational use and possession of cannabis in New Jersey by adults 21 years and older. Governor Phil Murphy, on February 22, 2021, signed the cannabis reform bill into law. The Act decriminalizes the possession of six ounces of marijuana or less used on private property. The amendment also removes marijuana as a Schedule I drug. It provides that the adult use and sale of cannabis in New Jersey will be subject to the regular state sales tax of 6.625% and authorizes local governments in the state to add an extra 2% tax.

The Act redefined the responsibilities of the Cannabis Regulatory Commission as regards the personal use of cannabis. The responsibilities are:

  • To regulate the processing, production, packaging, purchase, sale, transportation, and delivery of cannabis items.
  • To superintend over the issuance, suspension, revocation, or restriction of regular licenses or conditional licenses for the supply chain of cannabis items. A conditional license is a type of license the commission issues due to an abridged application process. Upon issuing a conditional license, the holder must become fully licensed by satisfying all of the conditions for full licensure.
  • To investigate and aid the prosecution of violations of laws relating to cannabis items.
  • To take regulatory measures to prohibit the advertisement of cannabis items in a way that appeals to minors, promotes excessive use, or promotes criminal activities.
  • To regulate the use of cannabis items for scientific, manufacturing, pharmaceutical, industrial, mechanical, and other purposes.

The Act also highlights six marketplace classes of licensed businesses, including:

  • Class 1 Cannabis Cultivation License
  • Class 2 Cannabis Manufacturer License
  • Class 3 Cannabis Wholesaler License
  • Class 4 Cannabis Distributor License
  • Class 5 Cannabis Retailer License
  • Class 6 Cannabis Delivery License

However, in August 2022, the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission proposed a readoption of specially adopted new rules and amendments to adult-use cannabis in New Jersey. The proposed changes include:

  • An overview of business activities each class of license holder can undertake
  • New regulations for distributors, wholesalers, and delivery businesses
  • License holders employing persons from economically disadvantaged areas
  • Providing a stable revenue collection for social equity investments
  • Providing information on the safe use of cannabis by retailers

These changes were adopted in February 2023.

The laws Assembly No. 1897 and 4269 New Jersey Legislature were among the bills signed into law in February 2021. It decriminalizes the possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana, hashish, and personal-use quantities of regulated marijuana-infused products. It also requires substance abuse treatment under certain circumstances. The law provides for criminal and civil justice reforms and addresses legal consequences linked to certain marijuana and hashish offenses. In addition, A1897 creates awareness of available expungement relief. Under the law, expunged records include warrants, arrests, complaints, processing records, fingerprints, commitments, photographs, rap sheets, index cards, and judicial docket records. It also requires pending possession charges to be downgraded or dismissed. However, there is no information on when individuals will be able to begin the expungement process.

Introduced on February 11th, 2021, Senate Bill, No. 3454 addresses underage possession or consumption of various forms of cannabis and the legal consequences for such activities. It initiates funding for programs and services to help discourage and prevent underage possession and consumption of cannabis items. The law provides that anyone aged between 18 and under 21 years found with marijuana, hashish, or any cannabis item in any public place (including a motor vehicle) shall be fined not less than $250. Likewise, anyone under 18 years old found with marijuana, hashish, or any cannabis item shall be fined not less than $500.

Timeline of –°annabis Law in New Jersey

The changes to New Jersey marijuana laws over time are as follows:

  • 2010: New Jersey becomes the 14th state to legalize medical cannabis. Governor Jon Corzine signed SB 119, the New Jersey Compassionate Use Marijuana Act (CUMMA), into law.
  • 2011: The New Jersey Department of Health adopted the rules for medical marijuana, including patient certification by a licensed physician, where to purchase medical marijuana and licensing process for distributors and cultivators.
  • 2012: New Jersey opened the first Alternative Treatment Center (ATC).
  • 2013: Senate bill 2842 came into law. The bill removed the limit on the number of cannabis cultivars for cultivation businesses. The bill also approved the manufacture of edible cannabis for minors only.
  • 2016: New Jersey legislature passed AB 457. The bill included PTSD as a qualifying medical condition. The Department of Health appoints a panel of health professionals with the power to add more medical conditions.
  • 2017: New Jersey legislature first attempted to legalize adult-use marijuana. The bill was vetoed by the outgoing governor.
  • 2018: Bill 3468, introduced in March, aims to decriminalize personal use and the possession of less than 10 grams of marijuana. The bill also recommends substance abuse treatment under certain circumstances. Also, five medical conditions were added to the qualifying conditions for medical marijuana use. The new regulations removed the psychiatric evaluation requirement for minor patients.
  • 2019: Governor Murphy signed the New Jersey medical marijuana program under the Compassionate Use Medical Cannabis Act. It removed the limit for terminally ill patients and increased the monthly limit for patients to 3 ounces within an 18 months period. The act also approved edible cannabis for adult patients.
  • 2020: The New Jersey Assembly and Senate passed bills A21 and S21, the Marketplace Modernization Act, and the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Enforcement Assistance Act. The bill aims to legalize adult-use cannabis, decriminalize simple possession of marijuana and hashish, and provide the legal framework for recreational cannabis use in New Jersey.
  • 2021: Bill A1897 was signed into law. It legalizes cannabis use and possession for persons 21 and older. Also, it decriminalizes the possession of hashish. Bill S3454 also came into effect in 2021. The bill addressed underage possession and consumption, including the legal consequences for those activities.
  • 2022: The legal sales of recreational marijuana began. Senate bill 353 legalized the cultivation of six marijuana plants for recreational use and ten plants for persons with a qualifying medical condition.

Federal Legalization of Weed in 2023

The House passed the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act (MORE) in 2022. The bill distinctively removes marijuana from the schedule of controlled substances and removes criminal punishments for persons who possess, distribute, or manufacture marijuana. Other changes through the federal legislation include:

  • Replacing the term marijuana with cannabis
  • Imposing an excise tax on produced or imported cannabis products and an occupational tax on cannabis export warehouses and production facilities.
  • Granting Small Business Administration loans to legitimate cannabis-related businesses.
  • Publish the demographic data on cannabis employees and owners
  • Establishing a trust fund to support initiatives geared at individuals and businesses within communities negatively impacted by the war on drugs.
  • Removing the denial of federal public benefits to persons with certain cannabis-related convictions.
  • Setting up a process to remove conduct sentencing and convictions for federal cannabis offenses.
  • Study methods on how to determine marijuana impairment in drivers.
  • Study the impact of state recreational marijuana in society and the workplace.
  • Research on the effect state legal marijuana has on schools and school-aged children.

Can I Use Cannabis?

Adults aged 21 years and older can legally use cannabis in small quantities. They are allowed to possess up to 6 ounces of cannabis for recreational purposes. The allowable doses of medical marijuana is solely determined by Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP) health care practitioners in New Jersey. MMP-registered patients aged 18 or older can use medical marijuana. Medical marijuana is mainly packaged in 1/4 or 1/8 ounce units. However, the maximum quantity currently allowed by law is 3 ounces in 30 days unless the patient is terminal, in which case the quantity is unlimited.

The New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Enforcement Assistance Marketplace Modernization Act removed marijuana from the category of Schedule I drugs, but the US Drug Enforcement Administration still classifies marijuana as a Schedule 1 drug. Prior to the enactment of the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937 in the US, it was legal to consume, cultivate, and sell marijuana, but in 1937, marijuana was banned. However, from the mid-1970s, states in the country began to relieve penalties for marijuana possession.

Currently, New Jersey does not allow home cultivation of marijuana. Cultivation of 1 ounce to less than 5 pounds is a 3rd-degree crime punishable by a sentence of 3 to 5 years in prison and a maximum fine of $25,000. However, Senator Vin Gopal (D-Monmouth) introduced bill S-3582 in March 2021. If signed, adults aged 21 and older will be allowed to grow up to six marijuana plants at home and a maximum of 12 plants per household. Medical patients will also be permitted to grow up to 10 plants as adults. An adult cannot possess more than 6 ounces of cannabis as this is a fourth-degree crime attracting a prison term of 18 months and a fine of up to $25,000. Marijuana possession, sale, or distribution of 25 pounds or more may also be considered a 1st-degree crime punishable by 10 - 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $300,000. Note that the penalties for subsequent offenses will carry more weight than first-time offenses, hence, significantly increasing the attendant penalties.

How The Legal Sale Of Cannabis In New Jersey Happens

The legal sale of recreational marijuana in New Jersey became effective in April 2022. However, the state still maintains strict restrictions on marijuana use, including the quantity an individual may purchase or possess. To foster the legal sale of cannabis, the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission, in March 2022, approved the license of seven alternative treatment centers to sell cannabis to persons above 21 without a medical card. The number of licensed retail stores for marijuana purchases increased to 19 by September 2022. The commission approved the sale of cannabis for recreational use at one ounce per purchase.

Also, state-registered medical marijuana patients can purchase medical marijuana at state-licensed medical marijuana dispensaries. Medical marijuana dispensaries, also referred to as Alternative Treatment Centers in New Jersey, pay $20,000 annually in license fees. These dispensaries are not allowed to sell marijuana to residents that are not state-registered medical marijuana patients.

Penalties for Marijuana-related crimes in New Jersey

While marijuana is legalized for use by adults aged 21 or older in New Jersey, there are rules guiding its use, and failure to abide by these rules will result in penalties, depending on the gravity of the crime. Below are marijuana-related crimes and their penalties.

What Are Cannabis Possession Charges In New Jersey?

Adults aged 21 years or older can possess up to 6 ounces of cannabis in New Jersey. However, anything more than that is considered illegal and will attract a penalty of a fine and imprisonment. Possession of more than 6 ounces of cannabis by an adult is a fourth-degree crime that will attract a prison term of 18 months and a fine of up to $25,000. If the culprit is found within 1000 feet of a school, extra 100 hours of community service and an additional fine will be added to the sentence. Possessing marijuana within 1,000 feet of a school will result in extra 100 hours of community service to the sentence and a variable fine depending on quantity.

Distribution Or Possession With Intent To Distribute In New Jersey

The sale or distribution of marijuana in New Jersey is currently illegal. A person found distributing less than 1 ounce of marijuana will receive a written warning if it is a first-time offense. However, subsequent offenses would attract penalties, depending on the quantity of marijuana being distributed or sold.

  • Sale or distribution of less than 1 ounce of marijuana is a 4th-degree crime that will result in up to 18 months imprisonment and a maximum fine of $25,000.
  • Sale or distribution of marijuana exceeding 1 ounce but less than 5 pounds is a 3rd-degree crime that will result in a sentence of between 3 and 5 years in prison and a maximum fine of $25,000.
  • Sale or distribution of between 5 pounds and 24 pounds is a 2nd-degree crime that will attract a sentence ranging from 5 to 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $150,000.
  • Selling or distributing 25 pounds or more is a 1st-degree crime punishable by between 10 and 20 years incarceration and a maximum fine of $300,000.

The location where the violation occurs also influences the penalty that will be meted out to the culprit.

  • Sale or distribution within 1,000 feet of school property or a school bus is a 3rd-degree crime that attracts a sentence ranging from 3 to 5 years imprisonment and a maximum fine of $150,000. However, if the culprit is found with less than 1 ounce, the mandatory minimum sentence of either half or one-third of the regular sentence will be imposed.
  • Sale or distribution of less than 1 ounce within 500 feet of any public property is a 3rd-degree crime that will result in 3 to 5 years in prison and a maximum fine of $25,000.
  • Sale or distribution of marijuana exceeding 1 ounce within 500 feet of any public property is a felony punishable by 5 to 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $150,000.

Sales of marijuana made to minors or pregnant women are felonies, resulting in double the fine and imprisonment term.

Cultivation In New Jersey

Unlike most states that have legalized medical marijuana, New Jersey does not allow home cultivation of cannabis even for registered medical marijuana patients. Personal cultivation of even one marijuana plant is a crime in the state punishable by a hefty fine and significant jail time. Summarized below are the penalties for cultivating marijuana at home or for personal use in New Jersey:

  • Growing less than 10 plants equivalent to 1 oz. - 5 lbs of cannabis is an offense punishable by 3 - 5 years of incarceration and a $25,000 fine
  • Growing 10 - 49 plants equivalent to 5 - 25 lbs of marijuana is punishable by 5 - 10 years incarceration and a fine of $150,000
  • Growing 50 or more plants equivalent to over 25 lbs of marijuana attracts a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years and up to 20 years of incarceration as well as a $300,000 fine

Hash And Concentrates In New Jersey

In New Jersey, hashish is the resin obtained from any part of the plant Genus Cannabis L. and any compound, production, derivative, salt, mixture, or preparation of such resin. The law permits adults aged 18 years and older to possess up to 17 grams of hashish. However, the possession of more than 17 grams of hashish is a 4th-degree crime that attracts a maximum sentence term of 18 months imprisonment and a maximum fine of $25,000. Other related offenses and their penalties include:

  • A first-time offense of manufacturing, dispensing, distributing, or possessing with intent to manufacture, dispense, or distribute less than 5 grams of hashish is subject to a written warning.
  • A subsequent offense of manufacturing, dispensing, distributing, or possessing with intent to manufacture, less than 5 grams of hashish is a 4th-degree crime that will attract a maximum fine of $25,000 or a prison sentence not exceeding 18 months, or both.
  • If the quantity of hashish involved was more than 5 grams but less than 1 pound, it is a 3rd degree crime that will result in a maximum fine of $25,000 or an imprisonment term of between 3 years and 5 years.
  • If the quantity of hashish involved was 1 pound or more but less than 5 pounds, it is a second-degree crime that will result in a fine not exceeding $150,000 or an imprisonment term of between 5 years and 10 years.
  • If the quantity of hashish involved was 5 pounds or more, it is a first-degree crime resulting in a fine, not more than $200,000, or a prison term of between 10 years and 20 years.
  • Manufacturing, dispensing, distributing, or possessing with intent to manufacture, dispense, or distribute hashish within 1,000 feet of a school or school bus stop is a crime in the 3rd degree. This crime is punishable by a fine of up to $150,000 and/or a prison term no less than a mandatory 3 years and not exceeding 5 years.

Marijuana Paraphernalia In New Jersey

The law permits a person over the age of 21 to purchase, possess, and use cannabis paraphernalia. However, the sale of paraphernalia is a 4th-degree crime punishable by a sentence of not more than 18 months in prison and a fine of not more than $10,000. Selling paraphernalia to minors is a 3rd-degree crime punishable by a sentence of 3 to 5 years in prison and a maximum sentence of $25,000. Individuals are not allowed to advertise the sale of any such device or equipment as it is a 4th-degree crime punishable by a fine not exceeding $10,000 or 18 months in prison, or both.

Possible Remedies For The Defendants For Violating New Jersey Marijuana Laws

A person charged with violating marijuana laws in New Jersey can contact the help of a competent criminal defense lawyer to beat the charges. Depending on the circumstances of the arrest, the defense lawyer can assert the following:

  • The Search was Illegal: A defense can get the case dismissed if they can prove that the manner law enforcement officers obtained the evidence was illegal.
  • The Arrest was Improper: The courts can dismiss a marijuana violation case if the arrest was inappropriate, including failure by the arresting officer to read the defendant their Miranda rights against self-incrimination.
  • Entrapment: The defense can prove that the law enforcement officer coerced the defendant into possessing the marijuana.
  • Mistaken Identity: The defense can argue mistaken identity due to confusion at the time of the arrest.
  • Ownership: A defense can get the sentence reduced or dismissed if they can prove that the marijuana does not belong to the defendant.

Additional Limitations

There are several other additional marijuana limitations in New Jersey. Although possession of certain amounts of marijuana is legal in marijuana, failure to turn over the marijuana to a police officer is a misdemeanor offense with penalties. Driving under the influence of marijuana, or being in a vehicle where the driver is under the influence, is an offense. These offenses may attract the following penalties.

  • Six months incarceration
  • Fines not exceeding $1,000
  • If the officer finds marijuana in a motor vehicle, the penalty is loss of driving privileges for a mandatory two years.
  • Community service
  • Mandatory fees to cover lab fees, drug enforcement penalty, and safe neighborhood services assessment.
  • Eviction from a rented property.
  • Probation period of up to five years.

Confiscation Of Assets In New Jersey

If an asset is deemed an integral part of illegal marijuana activities or an individual purchases an asset from the proceeds of the illegal sale and distribution of marijuana, such assets may be seized by law enforcement officers. Confiscation of assets in New Jersey occurs after a conviction for a criminal offense involving marijuana. New Jersey law permits the government to keep, destroy, or sell the confiscated asset.

What are Cannabis Cultivation Charges in New Jersey?

Presently, New Jersey does not permit the cultivation of marijuana in the state. The quantity determines the penalties for cultivating cannabis. The quantity via a vis the penalties include:

  • Cultivation of 1 ounce to less than 5 pounds is a 3rd-degree crime punishable by a sentence of 3 to 5 years in prison and a maximum fine of $25,000.
  • Cultivation of 5 pounds to less than 25 pounds (between 10 and 49 plants) is a 2nd-degree crime that results in a sentence of 5 to 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $150,000.
  • Cultivation of 25 pounds or more than 50 plants is a 1st-degree crime that results in a sentence of 10 to 20 years imprisonment and a maximum fine of $300,000.

What is the Legal Implication of Driving Under the Influence of Marijuana in New Jersey?

Driving under the influence of marijuana or hashish is a serious crime in New Jersey. Refusing to hand over marijuana or hashish to a nearby police officer is a misdemeanor. Typically, the penalties for DUIs on marijuana in New Jersey vary according to an offender's DUI history. These offenses can be punished by:

  • $250 to $400 fine, and a prison sentence of up to 30 days with a suspended license for first-time offenses.
  • Up to $1,000 and a prison sentence offense of up to 90 days for a second-time offense.
  • Up to $1,000 and up to 6 months prison sentence plus loss of license for a third-time offense.

Furthermore, the driving privileges of an adult offender shall be suspended, postponed, or revoked for between 6 months and two years of every person found guilty.

What is New Jersey's Cannabis History?

In March 1999, the National Academy of Sciences' Institute of Medicine researched the health benefits of marijuana. The research revealed that marijuana could treat or alleviate the pain or other symptoms associated with specific debilitating medical conditions like cancer, HIV, glaucoma, etc. Years later, on January 18, 2010, Ex-Governor Jon Corzine signed the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act (CUMMA), making New Jersey the 14th state to legalize marijuana for medical use. The implementation of CUMMA was stalled when Ex-Governor Chris Christie took office the next day. However, on August 9, 2012, New Jersey's Medical Marijuana Patient Registry reopened. Following this, registered physicians were allowed to initiate patient certifications with the Medical Marijuana Program (NJMMP). On September 10, 2013, Governor Christie signed into law a bill permitting patients younger than 18 years old to consume edible forms of marijuana.

The first dispensary opened in December 2012 in Montclair Township. As of October 2015, four additional centers had opened in Woodbridge,Egg Harbor Township, Borough of Bellmawr, and Cranbury Township. In July 2017, New Jersey issued the sixth permit to the non-profit Harmony Foundation, which permitted it to cultivate marijuana in the Town of Secaucus. After an additional permit was obtained, Harmony Foundation opened a dispensary in Secaucus in June 2018.

In a bid to expand the medical marijuana measure, Governor Phil Murphy signed the Jake Honig Compassionate Use Medical Cannabis Act in July 2019. The provisions of the Act were to:

  • Significantly increase the number of slots for medical cannabis providers.
  • Create the Cannabis Regulatory Commission to take over regulation of the medical cannabis program from the New Jersey Health Department.
  • Phase-out of sales tax over three years, whereby the tax will be reduced to 4% in July 2020, 2% in July 2021, and finally eliminated entirely in July 2022.
  • Ease the process of patients obtaining medical cannabis by reducing the mandatory frequency of medical eligibility verifications from four times yearly to once a year.
  • Permit patients to buy more cannabis at any given point and increase the maximum cannabis allowed for consumption from 2 ounces to 3 ounces for 18 months. The limitations were to be thereafter determined by the Cannabis Regulatory Commission, and with no limit for terminally ill patients).
  • Authorize hospice centers and nursing homes to obtain cannabis from dispensaries on behalf of patients.
  • Permit medical cannabis patients from outside New Jersey to purchase medicine while visiting New Jersey for up to six months.

Between 2017 and 2019, there was a legislative controversy on recreational marijuana legalization. Senator Nicholas Scutari, a Democrat from Union, initiated legislation to legalize recreational marijuana in New Jersey, and on November 3, 2020, the New Jersey Public Question 1 was approved by voters in New Jersey. 67% of the voters voted yes, and 33% voted no. The New Jersey residents voted to approve an amendment to the state constitution to legalize the recreational use of cannabis by people aged 21 and older. Hence, the possession and use of marijuana for residents aged 21 and older were legalized.

Finally, on February 22, 2021, Governor Phil Murphy signed the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory, Enforcement Assistance, and Marketplace Modernization Act into law. Consequent to this, the possession of up to 6 ounces (170 grams) of cannabis or 17 grams of hash was legalized and a marketplace framework was set up. The state issued 37 licenses for the sale of marijuana beginning in April 2022. The Governor also signed A5342 in 2021, addressing underage marijuana possession or consumption of marijuana.

What are Restrictions on Cannabis in New Jersey?

Following the legalization of cannabis in New Jersey, restrictions have been set to regulate its use. The restrictions include:

  • Consumers of any form of recreational cannabis must be at least 21 years old
  • Individuals must not possess more than six ounces of cannabis
  • Transporting medicinal or recreational marijuana across state lines is illegal both at state and federal levels and considered New Jersey marijuana trafficking.
  • Consuming cannabis on federal property is illegal.
  • Residents must not give or sell cannabis to minors and pregnant women.
  • Driving under the influence of cannabis is illegal.
  • Consuming cannabis in public is illegal. Individuals must not be found with cannabis within 1000 feet of a school, a school bus, or a public form of transportation, in any correctional facility, in a private vehicle unless the vehicle is not in operation. The prohibition also includes areas where smoking is not allowed, such as public parks or beaches, at any recreation center.
  • Home cultivation of marijuana is currently illegal, although Senator Vin Gopal (D-Monmouth) introduced bill S-3582 in March 2021. The bill is meant to allow adults aged 21 and older to grow up to six marijuana plants at home and a maximum of 12 plants per household. The bill, if signed, will also permit medical patients to grow up to 10 plants.
  • Property owners are authorized to ban the use and possession of cannabis on their properties if they choose.
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New Jersey Marijuana Laws