Washington State Gun Rights for Medical Cannabis Patients
Medical marijuana became legal in Washington in 1998 with the approval of Initiative 692, which allowed doctors to prescribe medical cannabis to patients suffering from terminal illnesses, such as cancer-related nausea and vomiting, multiple sclerosis (MS), epilepsy, and glaucoma. The initiative also permitted the state to add new conditions to the list as necessary and gave qualified patients and their primary caregivers an affirmative defense against criminal prosecution.
The Washington State Department of Health (WSDOH) is committed to protecting patients with qualifying illnesses’ access to care and to ensuring that products are secure, well-made, and clearly labeled. The program’s scope is concentrated on maintaining the database of medical marijuana authorizations, certifying medical marijuana specialists, and creating guidelines for products that might be useful for medicinal purposes.
In order to make the right decision regarding marijuana use for medical reasons, it is best if the patient and their healthcare provider decide together. According to current laws, a qualifying patient resides in Washington, has been diagnosed with a qualifying ailment, and has a prescription for medical marijuana from a doctor.
Does Having a Medical Cannabis Card Mean Not Being Eligible for a Gun License in Washington?
According to the WSDOH website, a secure system houses the Washington State medical marijuana authorization database. State law sets strict regulations and limits on who can access and utilize database information. The database is not linked to any other system in any manner, and it has no bearing on the patient’s ability to obtain or carry a firearm.
However, both recreational and medical marijuana possession is prohibited under federal law. Gun ownership is influenced by federal law. A gun dealer is forbidden from giving or selling a gun to someone who abuses or is dependent on a controlled substance that is prohibited by federal law, such as cannabis, which is a Schedule I drug.
As a medical cannabis cardholder, you may find obtaining a gun and a gun license difficult, as Washington state law prohibits gun dealers from selling weapons to “unlawful users,” which medical marijuana patients are categorically classed as. When purchasing a firearm, you must also submit to both federal and state background investigations, and your firearm has to be registered by the dealer with the state government.
Because the state of Washington medical marijuana patient database is private and can’t be accessible, it’s possible you may pass the background check by lying; however, taking that chance could lead you into further trouble as you will have committed a federal crime and could be subject to severe repercussions.
Can You Take Your Gun to a Dispensary in Washington?
Washington is a “shall-issue” state, which means that if the applicant complies with the basic requirements stated by state law, the issuing authority will grant them a license. The sheriff or police department issues licenses at the local level.
Any private sale of a firearm in Washington must go through a Federal Firearms Licensed (FFL) dealer and be subject to a background investigation. Firearms registration is necessary in that retail dealers must keep track of and report all retail firearm sales to the state department of licensing and the local police and sheriff.
If you are legally entitled to own a handgun and are at least 21 years old, you may open carry without a license in Washington. However, you may not take your gun into state courthouses or public schools. Residents possessing a Washington Concealed Pistol License (CPL) or non-residents with a license or permit from a state that Washington honors are permitted to carry concealed weapons and are allowed to bring them anywhere they go, including dispensaries.
Can You Consume CBD and Own a Gun in Washington?
The THC content of products made from industrial hemp is less than 0.3%. This indicates that the famous marijuana high feeling won’t be experienced when using this kind of CBD. If a blooming marijuana plant was used to produce your CBD, it will have higher THC concentrations and may make you feel high. The Federal Government deems this to be illegal since the law views it as being equivalent to marijuana.
The Farm Bill of 2018 was passed by the federal government, and it exempted industrial hemp from the definition of marijuana, which remained federally illegal. Industrial hemp is now being grown legally for the production of goods like food, fuel, textiles, and extracts like CBD.
The state of Washington permits the sale and use of hemp-derived CBD. And since marijuana products are legal in Washington, you can also purchase marijuana-derived CBD products from state-licensed dispensaries, but with specific purchase restrictions.
With that being said, you can own a gun and consume both hemp-derived and marijuana-derived CBD, as long as you’re following purchase restrictions.