Marijuana Laws in Colorado

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Marijuana Laws in Colorado

On January 1st, 2014 recreational marijuana retail stores became legal in Colorado. Although recreational marijuana has been legal in Colorado for some time already, it may now be legally sold through licensed stores.

Colorado will still regulate the sale and use of marijuana and users should be aware of the regulations to avoid criminal charges. This guide will help walk you through the basics of marijuana laws in Colorado today.

Who Can Buy Retail Marijuana?

For the most part, marijuana is now regulated similarly to alcohol. Anyone 21 or over can buy retail marijuana. Colorado citizens with a Colorado ID can buy up to an ounce, while non-Colorado citizens can buy up to a quarter ounce.

When Can I Buy Retail Marijuana?

Licensed stores are permitted to be open between 8 am and midnight. However, some cities may impose additional limitations. For example, in Denver retail marijuana stores must close by 7 p.m.

How Can I Transport Marijuana?

Anyone 21 and over can legally possess and transport marijuana. Marijuana can even be transported in cars, but drivers may not smoke while driving or drive under the influence of marijuana.

How Much Intoxication Constitutes Driving Under the Influence?

The law sets a very low intoxication level for driving under the influence, so it’s best to avoid any driving after smoking any amount of marijuana.

Can I Openly Walk Around with Marijuana?

No. Marijuana and marijuana paraphernalia may only be displayed in private in a way that "does not endanger others." You may not have your marijuana out on the streets, in public parks, or even exposed to the public from your private residence.

Where Can I Smoke?

You can only smoke in private residences where the owner of the residence says smoking marijuana is OK. You may not smoke in marijuana retail stores or in any public places. Public marijuana bars and cafes are still prohibited.

Can I Grow My Own Plants?

Yes, in Colorado individuals can possess up to six plants, with three or fewer of them flowering. However, you may not sell any of your plants unless you have a license. Still, you may give away up to one ounce to someone over the age of 21 for free.

How Much Will Marijuana Cost?

Retail store prices may vary and could potentially change over time as supply increases. However, the state of Colorado will charge a whopping 25% tax on all purchases, and cities may add additional taxes of their own on top of that.

Can the Federal Government Still Prosecute?

Yes. Although marijuana is now legal in Colorado, it is still illegal under Federal laws. However, the Obama administration has issued statements that they do not plan to interfere with states who chose to legalize marijuana, so prosecution would be unlikely. Still, don’t take marijuana on to any federal lands where federal marijuana laws will still be enforced.

Can I Travel with Marijuana Out of State?

No. Marijuana is still prohibited at airports, on planes, and may not cross state lines.

Is Colorado Doing Anything to Prevent Marijuana Illegally Traveling Out of State?

In effort to mitigate dangers associated with marijuana legalization, marijuana retail shops are required to closely track amounts of marijuana grown and sold. This helps ensure marijuana legally grown in Colorado is used exclusively for legal sales in Colorado and is not being sent out of state to be sold on the black market.

Will the Government Keep Track of Who Buys Marijuana?

No. Retail shops are not required to keep lists of people who purchase marijuana.

If you have more questions about your use of marijuana in Colorado, it can be helpful to contact an attorney to help you navigate the new marijuana laws in Colorado.

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Last Modified: 01-08-2014 12:48 PM PST

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