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Maine Medical Marijuana Laws & Regulations
In 1999, voters in the State of Maine enacted the Maine Medical Marijuana Act of 1998 which decriminalized use, possession and cultivation of marijuana at the state-level for patients who use marijuana medically on the advice of their physician for certain qualifying medical conditions. At that time, the Act did not establish a state-run patient registry. In 2002, the Maine legislature approved SB 611, which increased the medical cannabis possession limit for those who could legally acquire medicine under the 1998 Act to 2.5 ounces.
In 2009, the voters of Maine modified the 1998 act with another initiative, Question 5. Among the most notable changes created by Question 5 were the addition of several qualifying conditions, the creation of a statewide distribution program and a statewide patient registry system through the Department of Health and Human Services. In 2011, the Maine legislature amended the law to provide better patient privacy by making patient registration optional. In 2013, L.D. 1062 was enacted to include post-traumatic stress disorder to the list of qualifying medical conditions. In 2016, LD 726 was passed, authorizing third party testing labs.
Registration with the Maine Medical Marijuana Program (MMMP) is voluntary and not necessary to have qualified status for legal protections. Patients who possess a medical marijuana registry ID card issued by the Maine Department of Health and Human Services are required to have the card with them whenever they are in possession of cannabis. State law enforcement recognizes the card as proof of patient status. In addition, registered patients must present their Maine driver license or other Maine-issued photo ID to law enforcement, upon request.
Patients who are not registered must have their original physician certification form and either a Maine driver license or other Maine-issued photo ID and present both to law enforcement on request.
Caregivers are required to register with the MMMP unless the caregiver and patient are members of the same household. Caregivers may not have a criminal conviction and are subject to a background check. In addition, a caregiver may not have more than 5 patients.
If a patient or caregiver is found in possession of more than the limit set by law, the excess cannabis must be forfeit to law enforcement, but the patient or caregiver may present the medical purpose of the cannabis as a legal defense if charged.
Minor patients must have their parent or legal custodian/guardian apply as caregiver on their behalf.
SB 611 (2002) - increased the medical cannabis possession limit for those who could legally acquire medicine under the 1998 act.
Question 5 (2009) - Added several qualifying conditions and created both a statewide distribution program and a statewide patient registry system.
HP755/LD1062 (2013) - added Post Traumatic Stress Disorder to the list of official qualifying conditions.
LD 726 (2016) - authorized third party testing labs.
MMMP Rules (Last revised September 17, 2013)
The Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Act