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Illinois Cannabis FAQs

Illinois Cannabis FAQs

Here are the MOST Frequently Asked Questions across our Illinois Cannabis Community. This FAQ section is updated regularly, so if you’ve got a question we missed, please let us know.

Is Cannabis legal in Illinois? What about medical cannabis?

Illinois has a medical cannabis program as well as adult-use, otherwise known as “recreational” cannabis. Illinois was the 11th state to legalize cannabis for adult use. All consumers 21 years old and older, regardless of residency, may purchase cannabis from a licensed seller in Illinois. Visitors are restricted to a smaller possession amount.

How do I get my medical cannabis card in Illinois?

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) oversees The Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Patient Program. 

The state website lists the following basic requirements prospective patients must meet in order to apply to the program: 

  • Be a resident of the State of Illinois at the time of application and remain a resident during participation in the program;
  • Have a qualifying debilitating medical condition;
  • Have a signed physician certification (unless you are a veteran receiving medical care at a VA facility);
  • Be at least 18 years of age;
  • Not hold a school bus permit or Commercial Driver’s License (CDL); and
  • Not be an active duty law enforcement officer, correctional officer, correctional probation officer, or firefighter.

Current Qualifying Conditions

Illinois Department of Health’s current qualifying conditions.

  • Autism
  • Agitation of Alzheimer’s disease
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
  • Anorexia nervosa
  • Arnold-Chiari malformation
  • Cancer
  • Cachexia/wasting syndrome
  • Causalgia
  • Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy
  • Chronic pain
  • Crohn’s disease
  • CRPS (complex regional pain syndrome Type II)
  • Dystonia
  • Ehlers-Danlos syndrome
  • Fibrous Dysplasia
  • Glaucoma
  • Hepatitis C
  • Hydrocephalus
  • Hydromyelia
  • Interstitial cystitis
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Lupus
  • Migraines
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Muscular Dystrophy
  • Myasthenia Gravis
  • Myoclonus
  • Nail-patella syndrome
  • Neuro-Bechet’s autoimmune disease
  • Neurofibromatosis
  • Neuropathy
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Polycystic kidney disease (PKD)
  • Post-Concussion Syndrome
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Reflex sympathetic dystrophy
  • Residual limb pain
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Seizures (including those characteristics of Epilepsy)
  • Severe fibromyalgia
  • Sjogren’s syndrome
  • Spinal cord disease (including but not limited to arachnoiditis)
  • Spinal cord injury is damage to the nervous tissue of the spinal cord with objective neurological indication of intractable spasticity
  • Spinocerebellar ataxia
  • Superior canal dehiscence syndrome
  • Syringomyelia
  • Tarlov cysts
  • Tourette syndrome
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Ulcerative colitis

Illinois does allow minors with qualifying conditions to register with the program. Minors must have a designated caregiver(s) and are limited to cannabis-infused products only.  “Ashley’s Law” allows caregivers of minor registered patients to administer medical cannabis on school property.

To locate a provider and apply for your medical cannabis card visit HERE or the DIRECTORY.

Is it legal to grow my own Cannabis in Illinois?

In Illinois, only registered medical cannabis patients may grow cannabis at home. The regulations state that the patient must keep their “grow” out of public view in a locked area.  There is a limit of 5 plants over 5” tall to be grown at one time. The cultivation of 5 cannabis plants or fewer without a medical marijuana license is a civil violation punishable by a maximum fine of $200, without jail time. However, growing over 5 plants is a felony or at the very least a class 4 violation that is punishable by 1-3 years imprisonment.

Where is it safe to consume cannabis in Illinois?

Adults may consume or smoke cannabis within their home and on their private property. Property owners, businesses, colleges, and universities have the right to prohibit the use of cannabis as well. Licensed sellers may allow the option of smoking on-premises as would a licensed consumption location. 

Cannabis consumption is prohibited in public areas, motor vehicles, near police offices, firefighters, corrections officers,  near on-duty school bus drivers, on school grounds, or near anyone under the age of 21.

How much cannabis is it legal to possess?

Limits of possession for Illinois residents ( Adults over 21 )

  • Up to 30 grams of cannabis flower
  • Up to 5 grams of cannabis concentrate 
  • Up to 500 mg of THC in a cannabis-infused product 

Limits for out of state visiting Adults over 21 ( Half of that of Illinois residents)

  • Up to 15 grams of cannabis flower
  • Up to 2.5 grams of cannabis concentrate
  • Up to 250 grams of THC in a cannabis-infused product 

Illinois Medical patients

  • Up to 71 grams (2.5 oz) of cannabis products Such as flower, concentrates, and edibles during any 14 day period
  • Allotment increase requests by visiting with their physician and requesting an allotment increase evaluation
Will medical patients be able to shop at recreational dispensaries? If so do we pay tax still?

Short answer is they will be able to shop at certain dispensaries that are licensed for both medical and rec. And they will pay medical prices there.

But if they lose their card, or go to a rec dispensary only, then they will only be able to purchase as a rec consumer, which comes with the additional taxes. Hope that helps!

How Long Does It Take to Receive My Cannabis Card in Illinois?

As of recently, with provisional access available, patients in Illinois are able to obtain access to medical cannabis in as little as two weeks depending on their application. See more info here.

After I apply how long before I receive my card and can go make a purchase?

There was once a time when everyone in Illinois had to wait 90-120 days before being able to make a purchase with their card! Luckily those days are behind us! After you apply and pay successfully, you should be able to use your card printout immediately.