Alabama is a state that comes to mind often. It’s a Deep South state well-known for its hardy traditions and oppressive politics. Alabama’s reputation for growing cannabis is not a surprise.
Alabama has however passed a medical CBD law. This law allows people with chronic, debilitating epileptic conditions in Alabama to use marijuana extracts. These cannabis products should be high in CBD and low in THC.
Alabama makes it illegal to possess any amount of cannabis for personal consumption. Convictions of similar nature can result in both jail and fines.
Alabama’s cannabis policy is straightforward. All forms of cannabis, except oil with almost all the THC removed, are bad. Alabama has a simple possession law. You can go to jail for up to a year if you possess marijuana in any amount. That’s it.
There is no distinction for small amounts. First-time offenders are not considered. It’s just a simple “I saw weed”, and you’re going into jail.
It is easy to imagine that a vague policy on marijuana will be subject to the discretion of a court. This discretion may work in your favor, or against you, depending on who you are.
How does one decide if the ounce of your dresser is intended for personal use or to be sold?
This is unfortunately typical of Alabama’s legal system. Growing marijuana in Alabama falls in the discretionary category.
Carly’s Law has been also adopted by the state. Carly’s Law allows parents and caregivers of CBD-prescribed patients to use it as an affirmative defense against the purchase and possession of CBD products.
Growing Cannabis in Alabama
Alabama courts can handle marijuana cultivation cases in two ways:
- Simple possession
- Possession with the intent to distribute
A court could find that the defendant was growing marijuana for other purposes than personal use. The finding in this case will be possession with intent to distribute marijuana.
Alabama doesn’t have any specific laws regarding cannabis cultivation. Instead, Alabama’s laws on cannabis cultivation fall under the category of possession.
The court will decide if your plants are intended for personal use or are being sold to others. The state may impose mandatory prison time if they suspect you intend to sell your marijuana.
Despite all the uncertainty surrounding marijuana cultivation in Alabama, there is one thing certain: you don’t want to be caught.
Alabama weed cultivation is a high-stakes sport that can pay big dividends. If you want to play, you will need to be very smart.
First, don’t grow too many plants. This will make you appear to be trying to sell your marijuana, and extra plants could prove to be a liability. Second, follow the advice of master growers to avoid being caught.
Alabama’s law prohibits the manufacture or distribution of controlled substances. This is a felony that can be punished with mandatory minimum sentencing:
- Manufacture in 2nd Degree = Fine up to $30,000, mandatory minimum sentence of 2 Years, but not more than 20 Years in Prison
- Manufacture in 1st Degree = A Fine up to $60,000, and a 10 year sentence to life imprisonment
- Manufacturing THC concentrates or hashish in Alabama is considered manufacturing controlled substances in the second degree. This offense carries a maximum fine of $30,000 and a sentence of two to ten years in prison.
Manufacturing a Schedule I substance (including marijuana) is a Class A crime. The case involves at least two of the following:
- It happened within 500 feet of a house, business, church, or school
- Participate in a 17-year-old or younger person
- Booby trap
- Present: Firearm
- Produced any type of Schedule I substance
- Transport or delivery of materials that are used in manufacturing can pose a danger to human safety or health.
Possessing Cannabis in Alabama
It is a misdemeanor offense in Alabama to possess marijuana for personal use. This offense can result in a $6,000 fine and up to one year imprisonment.
Possession of cannabis for any purpose other than personal use is a crime. These felonies can result in a minimum prison sentence of one year, one day and a maximum fine of $15,000, respectively.
Alabama felony law makes possession of Schedule I drugs, including marijuana, a felony. Even if the charges relate to personal use, the penalties are the same.
Possession of concentrates or hash, regardless of personal use, is also a crime.
Alabama considers possession of drug paraphernalia to be a misdemeanor offense. You can be fined up to $6,000 or sentenced to up to one year imprisonment.
Selling Cannabis in Alabama
Alabama considers any sale of controlled substances a felony.
This crime can result in a maximum $30,000 fine and a mandatory minimum sentence for 2 years. However, no more than 20 years imprisonment is possible. Probation is prohibited and the mandatory minimum cannot be suspended.
Selling marijuana to minors is a felony. This offense carries a maximum $60,000 fine and can result in a 10 year to life sentence.
A person convicted of selling marijuana within three miles of a school or public housing project is guilty of an additional crime. An additional five-year sentence can be imposed for this crime.
A Class A felony is committed by any adult who sells, furnishes or gives Schedule I substances, including cannabis, to anyone under the age of 18. This is a serious offense in Alabama and can result in a fine of up to $60,000, or a penalty equal to 2 times the amount of the concentrate. These offenders can also be sentenced to prison for between 10 and 99 years.
Alabama’s misdemeanor of selling drug paraphernalia can result in a $60,000 fine and up to one year imprisonment. A felony is when an adult sells paraphernalia or other paraphernalia, punishable by a maximum $30,000 fine and up to 20 years imprisonment.
The act of making, cultivating, and/or selling large amounts of marijuana is known as cannabis trafficking. Alabama has the following felony charges:
Every conviction for Cannabis trafficking above can result in a sentence of between 10-99 years imprisonment, plus the mandatory minimum sentences.
Using Cannabis in Alabama
Alabama has made it illegal to manufacture, sell, possess, or distribute cannabis products or cannabis products for personal consumption. It is also illegal to possess marijuana or derivatives in the state of Alabama for any other purposes than medical.
Alabama passed a medical CBD law that is strictly enforced. This law allows patients with severe and chronic epileptic conditions, such as those suffering from epilepsy, to use cannabis extracts for medical purposes.
These extracts should contain very low levels of THC and high CBD.
To become a qualified patient, a person must participate in a state-sponsored clinical trial. Patients who participate in these clinical trials will be granted access to CBD products.
They are protected from all laws regarding possession, even though the substance will be in their possession outside of the clinical trial.
Breaking the Cannabis Laws in Alabama
Alabama drivers license suspensions for cannabis offenses will be automatic. All Class A felonies are punished severely by the state courts.
These convictions can result in fines of up to $60,000 and/or double the value the manufacturing products or materials.
Alabama has passed a cannabis tax stamp bill. This law requires that any person in possession of cannabis must legally buy and affix a state stamp on the contraband.
Alabama’s tax stamp rate for possessions exceeding 42.5 grams is $3.50 per Gram. Failure to comply with this law in Alabama is a felony.