Alabama Legal Information
In 2014, the Alabama state legislature passed SB 174, a restrictive cannabidiol (CBD) law. Officially entitled "Carly's Law," it offers an affirmative defense for the possession and use of CBD; however, the program is extremely limited and may not be able to provide CBD-rich medicine to patients in Alabama.
In 2016, HB 61 (also known as Leni's Law) was passed, which expanded the affirmative defense to several conditions and removed the requirement that patients must be enrolled in the UAB study program. Under HB 61, patients are eligible for the affirmative defense if they are simply diagnosed with a debilitating condition, regardless of the age of the patient. However, because physicians cannot write prescriptions for medical cannabis, parents of minor-aged patients may be ineligible for legal protections.
In August 2019, the state launched a 15 member Medical Cannabis Study Commission to fact find and provide a recommendation on the legalization of medical cannabis to the legislature.
In This Section
In 2014, the Alabama state legislature passed SB 174, a restrictive cannabidiol (CBD) law. Officially entitled "Carly's Law," it offers an affirmative defense for the possession and use of CBD. HB61 (2016) extends low-THC extract affirmative defense to patients with more qualifying conditions as well as parent caregivers.
To become a patient eligible for CBD under Leni’s Law, the patient must receive a diagnosis for a serious condition that is resistant to conventional medicine from, and be provided CBD by, a physician with whom they have a bona-fide physician-patient relationship and the CBD must be likely to provide the patient with therapeutic or palliative relief.
Under Leni’s Law, physicians with a bona fide physician-patient relationship to the patient may recommend CBD, but a recommendation is not required. This would allow physicians who otherwise treat a patient to prescribe CBD to such patient but is designed to exclude one-off engagements for the purposes of providing CBD from protection under the law.
Carly’s Law previously provided a protection for caretakers of patients, but this was deleted under the Leni’s Law amendments.
Unfortunately, patients, caregivers, and providers are still vulnerable to federal and state arrests, prosecutions, and incarceration. They also suffer pervasive discrimination in employment, child custody, housing, public accommodation, education and medical care.