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Brief History of Illinois Medical Marijuana Laws

2013 – House Bill 1 (HB 1) is approved and signed into law by Governor Pat Quinn, entitled “The Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act”. This established the right for patients and their appointed caregivers to be protected from arrest, prosecution or denial of any right or privilege. Provisions for cultivation centers and dispensaries are also outlined.

2014 – Department of Public Health released revised rules for the implementation of medical marijuana laws.

2014 – Governor Quinn signs Senate Bill 2636 (SB 2636), which allows for those aged under 18 to access non-smokable medical cannabis for all the same conditions those aged 18 or over can be recommended cannabis. Epilepsy is added to the list of qualifying conditions.

2016 – Senate Bill 10 (SB 10) extends the Illinois Pilot Program to 2020.

Patients with a valid medical marijuana card may possess 2.5 ounces of cannabis per 14-day period.

Home cultivation is prohibited.

State-licensed dispensaries are allowed, but none are operational as of yet.

Caregivers must be aged 21 or over, and may only serve one patient who is too sick to pick up their medication, and is homebound.

Cannabis is decriminalized in Illinois. Possession of 10 grams or less is a Civil Violation, and can bring with it a fine of up to $200. Possession of any more than 10 g and less than 30 is considered a misdemeanor and can bring with it prison time of up to one year and/or a $1,000 fine. Subsequent offenses bring a mandatory minimum sentence of at least one year, increasing if the possession amount is greater than 10 grams.

Sale or trafficking of less than 2.5 g of cannabis is a misdemeanor and can bring an incarceration period of 6 months and/or a fine of $1,500. Cultivation of 5 plants or less brings similar penalties, as does sale or distribution of paraphernalia.

Penalties for hash and concentrates are similar to those of dried cannabis flower.

Civil asset forfeiture is a possibility when charged.

2019/2020 – Cannabis is made legal in Illinois, and non-medical patients can now legally purchase their preferred meds & strains.

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