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Will a Medical Marijuana Card Affect My Rights?

The use of marijuana for medical purposes is legal in Arizona. It is still considered illegal to be used recreationally. The Arizona Medical Marijuana Act was passed in 2010 to legalize the use of the drug for medical purposes. A licensed doctor can recommend medical marijuana if you qualify based on your medical condition. You will be given an Arizona medical marijuana card that lets you legally possess, purchase, and use a specific amount of the drug. However, the recreational use of marijuana is still considered illegal in the state. Proposition 205 to legalize the recreational use of the drug was rejected in November 2016. If you are caught possessing, using, or distributing marijuana for recreational purposes, you will be charged with a felony and will need a criminal defense lawyer to help you out.

How Will Medical Marijuana Impact Gun Rights?

Medical marijuana is legal if you have a card in Arizona. However, it is still considered illegal by Federal Law. The transactions form you must fill out when buying a gun will ask if you are addicted to or use marijuana unlawfully. It also states that marijuana is illegal under federal law irrespective of whether it is decriminalized or legalized in your respective state. You cannot give false information on the firearms transaction form as it is considered a felony. Therefore, you may not be allowed to purchase or own a gun if you have a medical marijuana card.

Can I Use Medical Marijuana When on Probation?

According to the Arizona Supreme Court, anyone with a valid card can use the drug even when on probation. The prosecutor will not be able to request the prohibition of medical marijuana use when on probation in the plea offer. However, this rule applies only to probation in Arizona and not Federal probation.

Will I be Fired for Possessing or Using Medical Marijuana?

Most Arizona employers are not allowed to discriminate against an individual with a valid medical marijuana card. Hence, you cannot be fired if you own a card, even if you fail a drug test. However, there are a few exceptions to this rule. These include safety-sensitive roles and positions that can jeopardize contracts for the federal government. If you are in one of these roles and test positive for marijuana, you can be fired even if you have a medical marijuana card.

Can I be Refused a Job Because of My Medical Marijuana Card?

An employer cannot deny you a job because you use medical marijuana in most cases. You don’t even have to disclose that you are a cardholder and use the drug for medical purposes. Employers cannot even ask you about your marijuana use or patient status. However, there are certain exceptions to this rule. Positions that are termed “safety-sensitive” may not come under this rule. Employers will take extra precautions while hiring for these positions. Common jobs under this category include pilots, bus drivers, air traffic controllers, police officers, and firefighters. Your employer can ask you whether you are a medical marijuana cardholder when hiring for these positions. If they feel hiring you can be risky, they can reject you for the job. Another area where employers can deny you an appointment for being a medical marijuana cardholder is if hiring you can cause them to lose a licensing benefit or contract from the federal government. Since marijuana is still a Schedule I Controlled Substance under Federal law, businesses that involve contracts with the Federal Government can be subjected to additional checks and precautions.

Can I Get a DUI For Using Medical Marijuana?

According to Arizona law, you can get a DUI if you drive under the influence of marijuana, even if you are a medical marijuana cardholder. You can be charged for driving under the influence. Even if you are not intoxicated when testing, any trace of the drug in your bloodstream from a previous use will also result in the charge. If you are caught for the first time, you will be charged with a misdemeanor. You may get anywhere between one day and six months in prison, fees and fines up to $1,470, a compulsory substance abuse program, compulsory installation of an Ignition Interlock Device, or revocation of your driving license for one year. If you are caught for the second time within seven years, you will get a jail sentence for a minimum of 30 days, fines starting from $3,430, a minimum of 30 hours of community service, revocation of driving license for 18 months, or a compulsory installation of Ignition Interlock Device. A third offense will result in a felony charge with harsher fines and punishments.

Can I Possess or Use Medical Marijuana on a College Campus?

Though medical marijuana is legal in Arizona, you cannot possess it on a college campus. The state considers the possession or use of medical marijuana on a college campus illegal. This rule came into effect after a 2012 revision of the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act known as the campus ban statute. You cannot even possess it on a school bus, on pre-school, primary, or high school grounds, or in a correctional facility. You are not allowed to smoke medical marijuana on public transport, even if you have a card.

Will my Name be Public if I Own a Medical Marijuana Card?

As per the state law in Arizona, your name will not be public if you have a medical marijuana card. The information received by the ADHS is confidential. It cannot be disclosed to anyone under the Arizona Open Records Law. Law enforcement officers and employers will not be able to get details without your registration number, which is given on your card. A police officer may, however, get a search warrant for departmental records if they have probable cause to prove that you are committing a marijuana crime. can help you understand the rules and laws related to medical marijuana. We have years of experience dealing with drug-related cases and medical marijuana-related issues. You may contact us for a free consultation.

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Lane, Hupp, & Crowley,

111 W Monroe St Ste. 1216 Phoenix AZ 85003,

(480) 562-3482


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If you have been charged with a DUI, drug charge, sex crime or any serious criminal offense, let an experienced defense team fight for you. Schedule a consultation with one of our partners today. Call (480) 562-3482 or send an email.