Since June 10, 2016, New Hampshire has sanctioned therapeutic cannabis (medical marijuana), and allows for up to 2 ounces of usable cannabis for a “qualifying patient.” Effective September 16, 2017, New Hampshire decriminalized personal use amounts of marijuana (3/4 of an ounce or less), hashish (5 grams or less), and certain marijuana-infused products for persons over age 21. Possession of these amounts is still a misdemeanor criminal offense for anyone under age 21, or for someone with 4 or more convictions within a 3 year period. It is also a crime for adults in New Hampshire to negligently store marijuana-infused products, to possess more than the alotted amounts, or to operate a motor vehicle under the influence of any drug. Here are some important things to remember about New Hampshire’s marijuana laws:
- Marijuana has been decriminalized, but is still not legal in New Hampshire. Unless you are an authorized medical marijuana patient, marijuana is still against the law and is punishable by fines.
- Marijuana possession is still a crime under federal law, and a conviction for possessing even small amounts of marijuana may still impact federal aid, such as education grants and loans. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) still asks if applicants have been convicted for the possession or sale of illegal drugs for an offense that occurred while you were receiving federal student aid.
- Persons under age 21 face more severe consequences for possession, and may lose driving privileges for certain offenses.
- A person who receives a summons for possessing a personal use amount of marijuana must return the summons within 30 days. The failure to do so may result in a default being entered and the suspension of driving privileges.
For more information on marijuana laws, drug offenses, and the penalties for violating these laws in New Hampshire, including a loss of license, please contact one of the lawyers at Samdperil& Welsh, PLLC and schedule a consultation.