Gun Rights for Medical Cannabis Patients in Arizona
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Arizona Medical Cannabis was legalized in November 2010 through Proposition 203, which received 50.1% of the people’s vote. Arizona residents who have at least one qualifying condition may receive medical marijuana recommendations from state-licensed doctors and can obtain an Arizona medical marijuana card that will enable them to buy, possess, and use marijuana.
Patients are also allowed to possess up to 2.5 ounces (71 g) of cannabis for the treatment of the following qualifying conditions:
- Agitation of Alzheimer’s disease
- Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
- Any chronic or debilitating medical condition or disease or the treatment for one that causes cachexia or wasting syndrome
- Chronic pain, such as from migraines or arthritis
- Crohn’s disease
- HIV or AIDS
- Hepatitis C
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Severe nausea
- Severe or persistent muscle spasms, such as those associated with multiple sclerosis
- Seizures, including from epilepsy
The Arizona Medical Marijuana Act (AMMA) is regulated by the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS). Patients who meet the requirements and register with the ADHS can purchase marijuana from medical marijuana dispensaries or find a caregiver to do it for them. ADHS limits the number of dispensaries to 124 and states that only patients who reside more than 25 miles (40 km) from a dispensary may cultivate their own cannabis.
Does Having a Medical Cannabis Card Mean Not Being Eligible for a Gun License in Arizona?
You need to review the regulations before applying for a medical marijuana license in Arizona if you possess a firearm. These laws, unfortunately demand some discretion from the patient/buyer because they are inconsistent at the state and federal levels.
Arizona law permits medicinal marijuana users to possess firearms. You are regarded as a lawful user and won’t be prevented from buying a gun — at least by the state — if you have a medical need for cannabis and are registered as a patient with the state. Federal law and Arizona law, however, are two quite distinct things.
Cannabis is categorized as a Schedule I controlled substance at the federal level. Additionally, it is specifically forbidden for cannabis users to own firearms by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF). The Gun Control Act of 1968 is the basis of this legislation.
However, neither the Arizona Department of Health Services nor a medical marijuana doctor in Arizona is permitted to inquire about your gun ownership status. There are no laws that you are violating in the eyes of the state.
There are also no known instances of federal officials targeting Arizona medicinal marijuana patients for possessing firearms, and the state has never utilized its law enforcement resources to go after marijuana users who own weapons. Although it’s extremely uncommon, the chance of legal problems does exist because of the inconsistencies between state and federal legislation.
The decision to apply for a medicinal marijuana certificate as a gun owner depends on you. Unfortunately, it’s a tricky issue since, although the combination of variables does break federal law, so does marijuana use alone. If you have questions, your best option is to talk to skilled legal counsel.
Can You Take Your Gun to a Dispensary in Arizona?
Purchasing a handgun from a private individual does not require a license, background check, or registration of guns, but the buyer must be 18 years old or older. Those who purchase goods from a federally authorized dealer must be over 21 years old.
Anyone who is at least 18 years old and is allowed to legally possess a handgun may open carry in Arizona. There are some places that are off-limits, such as schools or liquor stores, with “no firearms” signs. Anyone who is legally allowed to own a handgun and is at least 21 years old may carry a concealed weapon without a permit. In instances where a permit is needed (reciprocity, firearms training, etc.), Arizona Concealed Weapons Permits (CWP) are issued to residents and non-residents who are at least 21 years old. They require a state-approved firearms training course, though there are some exceptions for law enforcement and military personnel.
These places are off-limits even with a permit/license:
- Any public school property
- Any public place or event if the organizer requests gun owners give them custody of the weapon or remove it from the location
- Locations for voting on election day
- Generators that use nuclear or hydroelectric power
- On the property of an alcoholic beverages store while intoxicated or in an area where the store has displayed a sign banning firearms
- Correctional facilities
- Indian reservations
- Game preserves
- Secure areas of airports
- Federal or state office buildings
You are allowed to bring firearms to dispensaries as long as the owner permits them on their premises.
Can You Consume CBD and Own a Gun in Arizona?
CBD may be derived from both hemp and marijuana. Both CBD sources are accepted in Arizona.
With the passage of SB 1098 in May 2018, the Arizona State Legislature legalized industrial hemp. The usage of hemp and all of its components, including CBD, is legal under this measure. As long as the THC percentage of the product doesn’t surpass 0.3%, Arizonans can buy any kind of CBD product produced from hemp, even without a prescription from their doctor.
Arizona’s Medical Marijuana Act, which was passed in 2010, makes the use of CBD products produced from marijuana lawful for qualified patients. To participate in the state’s medicinal marijuana program, you must register as a patient and be diagnosed with one of the qualifying conditions. Additionally, in order to acquire CBD products made from marijuana, you must obtain a doctor’s prescription.
So although a certified medical marijuana patient will have no problems possessing a firearm and using CBD products at the same time, a non-patient can own a firearm and only consume hemp-derived CBD products.