The state of Virginia has expanded its medical marijuana program extensively and now allows patients to purchase medical marijuana products with a certified recommendation alone. However, you can still get a physical card if you like. But even with all of these amazing pros, there are some consequences that do come with having a medical marijuana card in Virginia. Letâs discuss them today,
Consequences of Obtaining a Medical Card in Virginia
1. Gun Ownership
As per the federal law that regulates gun ownership within the state, a person in possession of a Schedule I drug canât lawfully own/carry a gun. Marijuana is still categorized as a Schedule I drug on the federal level.
2. No commercial driver’s license
Commercial driverâs licenses are issued by the federal government for its employees or anyone who qualifies for a commercial permit. As per federal law, a person in possession or consuming medical or recreational marijuana canât legally obtain a commercial driverâs license.
3. Not allowed for federal employees
Even though medical marijuana is getting legalized throughout many US states, the substance is still categorized as a Schedule I drug on the federal level as the drug has a very high potential of being misused. As a result, even if the state does offer protection to medical marijuana users, federal employees are strictly prohibited from the possession and consumption of marijuana for both recreational and medical usage.
4. Annual renewal required
Having a state-issued medical marijuana card doesnât mean that youâre getting a lifetime permit for medical marijuana consumption. As per the Virginia state law, you are required to renew your medical marijuana permit every year which involves again booking an evaluation with a certified medical marijuana physician.
Even though medical marijuana is legal in many US states including Virginia, the overall impression of the drug is still not so very good for many people. But does this cause any problems? In a way yes, as people who donât see marijuana as a beneficial medical drug are also working in bureaucratic sectors putting hurdles in further research and expansion of marijuana in the field of medicine.
6. Access to Medical Cannabis
In 2021, Virginia became the first southern state to allow recreational consumption and possession of a small amount of marijuana for its residents. The state also allowed registered dispensaries to work within the region making access to both medical and recreational cannabis quite convenient.
7. Regulated Product
Access to state-authorized medical marijuana dispensaries ensures that patients are getting regulated products at lower tax rates. Plus, the dispensaries are a great place to discuss which potential marijuana strain you should be trying in the first place.
8. Employment Implications
Having a medical marijuana card in Virginia does allow you some level of employment protection. For example, an employer canât fire you or refuse to hire you if youâre qualified enough just because you have a medical marijuana card. On the other hand, an employer can fire you or refuse to hire you if your marijuana consumption affects your work.
9. State vs. Federal Law
The overall clash between federal and state law is very clear regarding medical marijuana. Many us states (38 to be exact) have declared medical marijuana legal. However, marijuana is still considered as a Schedule I drug on a federal level making it illegal to consume or possess.
Before 2022, medical marijuana patients were required to apply for a physical Virginia medical marijuana card by paying an application fee to the relevant department. But now, medical marijuana patients can legally consume/possess medical marijuana with a valid medical marijuana recommendation issued by an authorized state physician.
11. Travel Within the State
As of 2021, traveling with marijuana products within state boundaries is decriminalized as in most cases youâll get a $25 fine receipt for around one ounce of marijuana in possession. You can completely avoid the fine with a medical marijuana card.
12. Driving Under the Influence
Even if you have a valid medical marijuana card, it is illegal to drive or operate a motor vehicle under the influence of marijuana or any other drug in a state that affects your ability to drive or operate the motor vehicle safely.
13. Privacy Concerns
The state of Virginia doesnât allow third-party irrelevant organizations or agencies to access the private data of individuals including medical marijuana records. The only time someone from a law enforcement agency or any other relevant party can get a record of such history is if marijuana was illegally possessed or consumed by the individual and criminal charges were raised.
14. Housing Implications
Even though the people of Virginia are slowly adapting to the medically beneficial use of marijuana, it is important to note that sometimes, individuals having medical marijuana cards may face housing implications from the home/land owner. Especially if youâre going to cultivate marijuana in your residence.
Can a job not hire you if you have a medical card in Virginia?
- The law prohibits any employer from discriminating among potential candidates for a job just because a candidate has a medical card in Virginia. However, the employer can refuse to hire you if marijuana consumption does affect your working capacity.
Can you go to a dispensary in Virginia without a medical card?
- In the year 2022, the state of Virginia made some prominent changes in its medical marijuana program. One of such key changes was the fact that individuals without medical marijuana cards were now allowed to visit state-licensed marijuana dispensaries. Recreational use of marijuana was legalized within the state but individuals without a medical marijuana card do pay higher sales tax.
Can you get fired for failing a drug test with a medical card in Virginia?
- Yes, whether you have a medical marijuana card or not, failing a cannabis test or refusing to take a drug test allows the employer to fire you.
The state of Virginia is expanding its medical marijuana program introducing new and improved ideas that are working in favor of breaking the stereotypical impression of marijuana. However, the consequences of having a medical marijuana card will remain intact for some time more till people can acknowledge the medical importance of marijuana on a broader spectrum.
Still, if you have made up your mind to apply for a Virginia medical marijuana card, the KIF can help you throughout the process. Give us a call or visit our website today!