Top Benefits of Getting A Medical Card In Illinois
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August 2013 marked the moment when Illinois joined the ranks of states legalizing medical marijuana, becoming the 20th one to do so. Subsequently, the advantages of obtaining a medical card in Illinois have become increasingly evident.

At present, recreational cannabis is also legal in Illinois, but adult-use consumers do not have access to the same extensive benefits as medical patients. Thus, the question arises: What are the perks of obtaining a medical card in Illinois compared to simply purchasing recreational marijuana? Allow us to explain.


Medical Card in Illinois Trumps Access to Recreational Marijuana

On January 1, 2020, Illinois underwent a transformation in its marijuana legislation, permitting the recreational use of marijuana for individuals aged 21 and above.

Given the legalization of recreational marijuana, it’s natural for certain patients to raise inquiries about the advantages of holding an Illinois medical card. After all, if one can readily purchase marijuana from a dispensary, the necessity for a medical card might seem questionable.


The Benefits of Getting a Medical Card in Illinois

While recreational marijuana might be legalized, Illinois offers distinct advantages for those possessing a medical marijuana card. These perks include the ability to grow marijuana at home, a higher possession limit, reciprocity with other states, a lower age limit for use, and the opportunity to obtain more marijuana for a lower cost. Our comprehensive explanation of these Illinois medical card benefits will demonstrate why obtaining a medical card in the state remains highly appealing, despite the legality of recreational marijuana.


You Have Access to More Weed and Options

One of the most significant advantages of having an Illinois medical marijuana card is the possession limit. Under Illinois marijuana possession laws, individuals with a medical card are allowed to possess a greater amount of weed compared to recreational users.

For recreational users, the limit is one ounce per purchase, whereas residents with a medical card can purchase up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana every two weeks.

Moreover, if you feel that you need a larger quantity of marijuana to manage your medical condition’s symptoms, you have the option to apply for a waiver that permits you to possess more marijuana at home.

Having a medical card spares you from the inconvenience of frequent trips to the dispensary for medical marijuana, which can disrupt your daily routine.

Thanks to the higher possession limit afforded by a medical marijuana card in Illinois, you can stock up on your favorite products in a single trip, making it more convenient for patients.

Additionally, dispensaries typically offer exclusive medical-only product menus that feature enticing products available only to patients with a medical marijuana card in Illinois.

These exclusive products cover a wide range of categories, including flowers, vape, tinctures, edibles, and concentrates, allowing patients to select their preferred items for medical use.


You Can Grow Your Own Weed at Home

Furthermore, there’s an added benefit: any marijuana cultivated at your residence doesn’t contribute to the possession limit.

Keep in mind that individuals who cultivate marijuana in Illinois without obtaining a medical card will be subject to penalties, which may involve fines and imprisonment.

Additionally, it’s essential to ensure your plants are grown in a secure and discreet location, hidden from public view, and within the legal limit.


Save Money with a Medical Card in IL

Obtaining a medical card in Illinois comes with a significant advantage: substantial cost savings.

You might think that getting a medical card in IL isn’t necessary, considering you can purchase recreational marijuana without one. However, that’s not the case! In reality, having a medical card is more cost-effective. Let’s break it down together.

Recreational cannabis incurs various taxes, including a 6.25% sales tax, a purchaser tax based on THC content, and a 3.5% municipality tax.

For cannabis with less than 35% THC, there’s a tax of 10% to 24% on the purchase price. If the THC content is over 35%, the tax increases to 25% of the purchase price.

In contrast, medical marijuana is only subject to a 1% sales tax and a 3.5% municipality tax. When you consider these tax differences, it becomes evident that having a medical card in Illinois will save you money.

For example, if you want to buy an eighth of cannabis flower priced at $70 with a THC concentration of more than 35%, recreational consumers will pay $94.33 (3.5% + 6.25% + 25%), whereas medical cardholders in Illinois will pay only $73.15 (1% + 3.5%).

This price difference of $21.18 will be a noticeable expense every time you buy marijuana without a medical card.

Although obtaining your medical card in Illinois incurs some costs, it’s a worthwhile investment. The medical card is valid for up to three years, providing you with three years of exclusive deals, discounts, and unique offerings unavailable to recreational users.

Furthermore, medical marijuana patients benefit from dispensary discounts, loyalty programs, and other exclusive offerings specifically tailored to those with medical cards in IL.


Medical Marijuana Patients Come First

The availability of marijuana is limited, so there might be times when the supplies become scarce. Nevertheless, during shortages, dispensaries will give priority to individuals holding medical cards.

The reason behind this is the Illinois recreational law, which grants patients with medical cards in Illinois preferential access to dispensaries over recreational users.

Certain dispensaries exclusively serve medical marijuana patients, resulting in significantly faster service compared to recreational dispensaries, where waiting in lines is common.

Obtaining a medical card in Illinois is beneficial as it allows you to bypass the inconvenience of waiting in queues.


You Don’t Have to Wait Till You Are 21

In Illinois, the use of recreational marijuana is permitted, but only individuals aged 21 or older are allowed to purchase it. This implies that even if you have a qualifying medical condition but are not yet 21, you are ineligible to purchase cannabis or related products.

However, there is an alternative for those under 21 with qualifying medical conditions. They can obtain a medical card, provided they have a parent or guardian applying on their behalf. This process is entirely lawful and accessible.


You Can Use Your Illinois Medical Marijuana Card in Other States

Certain states that permit medical marijuana have provisions for patients from other states to register as visiting patients and utilize their home state’s medical marijuana card to make purchases.

If you possess a medical card for marijuana in Illinois, you are eligible to buy medical marijuana in states that have reciprocity agreements.

While it remains unlawful to transport marijuana across state borders, if you happen to be traveling within a state that observes reciprocity, you can legally obtain and utilize medical marijuana.




Can minors obtain a medical card in Illinois?

Yes, minors in Illinois are eligible to apply for a medical card, but they must have a parent or legal guardian act as their carer. The minor’s medical cannabis therapy will be overseen by the carer, who will also be in charge of getting the medical card.


What are the purchase and possession limits for medical cardholders?

Illinois residents with medical cards are permitted to buy and possess more marijuana than do recreational users. The current medicinal marijuana possession limit is 2.5 ounces (or 70 grams) every 14 days.


Are there any tax benefits for medical cardholders in Illinois?

Yes, consumers of medical cards are free from paying some taxes on goods made from cannabis used for recreational purposes. Due to this, buying medical marijuana is more affordable than doing so on the black market.


Can medical cardholders grow their own cannabis in Illinois?

Yes, individuals with valid medical cards have the opportunity to grow their own cannabis plants in their homes. Up to five plants may be grown by patients for personal use, assuring a steady supply of medical marijuana.


Will my medical marijuana use be confidential in Illinois?

Yes, the Illinois medical cannabis program strictly protects the privacy of patient data, ensuring that your usage of medical marijuana stays anonymous and secure.


Can I use my out-of-state medical card in Illinois?

Currently, Illinois does not accept medical cards from other states. You must apply for and receive an Illinois medical card in order to use marijuana for medical purposes legally in the state.


Also Read: How To Get A Medical Marijuana Card In Illinois?



Getting a medical card can be a life-changing decision for people looking for natural relief from their medical issues since the Illinois medical marijuana program is always improving to better meet patients’ requirements.

By Kif Team

The Kif Team has expert team of writers with a profound understanding of holistic medicine. We specialize in assisting individuals in obtaining their medical marijuana cards. We firmly believe in the therapeutic benefits of medical cannabis for various health conditions. Our mission is to educate and enlighten as many people as possible about its potential advantages.

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