New Jersey Legal Information
On January 18, 2010, Gov. Jon Corzine signed the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act, SB 119 into law on his last day in office. In coming Governor, Chris Christie made several attempts to delay the program. After a series of legislative and bureaucratic battles the New Jersey Department of Health (DOH) adopted rules for the program in November 2011. These rules included changes to the licensing process for cultivators and distributors, prohibited home delivery, and required a recommending physician to certify that a patient’s qualifying condition is “resistant to conventional medical therapy” and must be re-certified every 90 days. Patients must obtain their medicine from one of six licensed “Alternative Treatment Centers” (only 5 are currently operating). The certifying physician must indicate the quantity a registered patient can obtain, not to exceed two ounces in a 30-day period. The law also requires
The first patient registrations were accepted in August 2012, and the first Alternative Treatment Center opened in December 2012. In August 2013, Senate Bill 2842 lifted the limits on the number of cannabis strains that may be cultivated and allowed for the manufacture and distribution of edible cannabis products solely to minors. On November 9, 2015, A4587 was signed into law. This bill requires that schools and some facilities for the disabled develop policies for the administration of medical marijuana on their grounds.
In 2016, the legislature passed AB 457 adding PTSD as a qualifying condition and DOH finally appointed a panel of physicians and health professionals to add more qualifying conditions through a petition process.
In This Section
New Jersey lawmakers approved Senate Bill 119 on January 11, 2010 by a vote of 48-14 in the state House and 25-13 in the state Senate; it was signed into law by then-Governor Jon Corzine on January 18, 2010.
New Jersey residents registered with the Department of Health and Senior Service’s Medical Marijuana Program (MMP) are protected from "arrest, prosecution, property forfeiture, and criminal and other penalties." Those protections extend to qualifying patients, their physicians, primary caregivers, and individuals licensed to cultivate and distribute medical cannabis. DHSS is to license six “alternative treatment centers” in the state, two each in the northern, central, and southern regions of the state.
Medical professionals recommending medical cannabis must hold an active New Jersey Medical license in good standing issued by the NJ Board of Medical Examiners, possess an active controlled dangerous substances registration issued by the NJ Division of Consumer Affairs that is not subject to limitation and practice within the State of New Jersey.
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.