Yes, it is. On Monday, February 22, 2021, New Jersey officially legalized marijuana, making it the 14th state in the country to do so. After a failed legislative push back in 2019, New Jersey residents overwhelmingly voted in favor of legalizing marijuana during the General Election in November 2020.
While the news of the legalization has been in talk for quite some time, there are important questions that must be answered now that the legalization is finally here. Can you still be arrested for possessing marijuana? Will you be able to grow it at your home? When will you be able to buy it? And most importantly, what happens if you currently have a marijuana-related charge against you?
With marijuana now legal in New Jersey, it’s more important than ever before to know what you should expect if you plan on using it.
Can I Legally Possess Marijuana in New Jersey?
Yes, with restrictions. Under this new law, you will only be allowed to be in possession of up to six ounces of marijuana. That means if you are caught in possession of anything higher than this legal amount, you may be facing legal ramifications.
Additionally, you will be allowed to smoke marijuana anywhere that you can smoke cigarettes. However, it is still against the law to smoke marijuana on a public street and on public transportation.
Can I Grow Marijuana At Home?
No. There is no provision under this new law that will allow anyone to grow a marijuana plant at home, regardless of whether or not they intended to use it for recreational or medicinal purposes. There are several states that do currently permit residents to grow their own marijuana plant at home, so only time will tell if New Jersey eventually follows suit. As for right now, however, it remains against the law.
When Can I Buy Marijuana in New Jersey?
Governor Murphy is hopeful that NJ residents will be able to purchase marijuana from a dispensary in six months, however, industry experts are not so sure. With about 8 million people currently dependent on medical marijuana, operators want to make sure that there will be a sufficient supply to cover these patients first before expanding marijuana for recreational use. Experts believe this might take a full year to go into effect.
What Happens to My Criminal Charges?
Under the directive of the Attorney General, the following marijuana-related offenses will be vacated:
- 2C:35-5(b)(12) – distribution of marijuana or hashish
- 2C:35-10(a)(3) – possession of marijuana or hashish
- 2C:35-10(a)(4) – possession of marijuana or hashish
- 2C:35-10(b) – under the influence of marijuana or hashish
- 2C:35-10(c) – failure to properly dispose of marijuana or hashish
- 2C:36-2 – possession of drug paraphernalia that was intended to use, ingest or inhale marijuana or hashish
- 2C:26A-1 – any disorderly persons offense subject to conditional discharge pursuant to this section
- 39:4-49.1 – possession of marijuana or hashish in the vehicle
If you have any outstanding fines or are currently under supervision, parole or on probation as a result of one of the marijuana-related offenses listed above, they will be vacated under this new law.
If you have questions about how this new law will affect you or if you are interested in learning more about expunging your record for a crime not listed here, contact the Law Offices of Anthony J. Vecchio for a consultation: 732-217-4860.
Contact an Experienced New Jersey Criminal Defense Lawyer About Your Drug Charges in Woodbridge
Were you arrested and charged with drug possession or distribution in New Jersey? A criminal conviction can result in costly fines, jail time and a driver’s license suspension. That is why you need to speak with a qualified criminal defense attorney as soon as possible about your case. At the Law Offices of Anthony J. Vecchio, LLC, we have successfully represented clients who have been charged with a drug crime in Freehold, Woodbridge, Jackson, Old Bridge and throughout New Jersey. Call 732-217-4860 or fill out the online contact form to schedule a consultation with a member of our legal team. We have an office conveniently located at 227 Main Street Woodbridge, NJ 07095 as well as offices located in Jersey City, Freehold, Princeton and Mt. Laurel.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.
Disorderly conduct consists of any improper behavior such as fighting, threats of violence, or creating a dangerous atmosphere.