A Guide to Colorado Marijuana Laws [Updated 2019]


iStock / AndrewSoundarajan

In 2012, Colorado became 1 of the initially two states to legalize private-use cannabis. Right here is almost everything you have to have to know about Colorado’s marijuana laws.

Possession and Acquiring Limits

Private-use cannabis is legally obtainable for acquire, sale, possession, and use by adults aged 21 and older. A licensed cannabis retail shop is the only legal spot from which to acquire weed. To make a acquire, you have to present a valid government-issued ID proving your age.

Adults 21 and more than are authorized to possess up to 1 ounce of cannabis on them at a time. Legally aged adults are also permitted to give up to 1 ounce of cannabis away, but they can not sell pot (such as homegrown marijuana) unless they are licensed with the state to do so and are complying with all state and county cannabis retail regulations.


The public consumption of pot is illegal regardless of its kind. Cannabis can not be inhaled or ingested in any public spot such as

  • apartment and condominium popular places
  • restaurants, cafes, or bars
  • sidewalks
  • ski slopes
  • public parks
  • amusement parks
  • concert venues
  • federal land

Cannabis can be consumed on private home, even so there may well be some exceptions. Renters have to comply with their home owners’ lease agreements which are permitted to ban the consumption of marijuana.

The consumption of pot in a hospitality home such as a hotel, inn, or rental is only permitted if the owners of the home let it. House owners are authorized to ban the use of cannabis on their properties.

In early May well 2019, Colorado lawmakers passed a bill that would authorize the licensure of public consumption places. The framework for this new allowance is nonetheless becoming created.

Though the recreational and health-related use of cannabis are legal in Colorado, employers may well demand drug tests and make employment choices primarily based on the final results.

Cannabis In the course of Pregnancy

Though pregnant ladies are not explicitly prohibited from buying or utilizing cannabis, the law makes it possible for the government to intervene. If a newborn infant tests good for THC at birth, Colorado’s law calls for hospitals to speak to youngster protective solutions. Separation from the infant may well be a legal consequence.

Cannabis Transport and Delivery

Adults 21 and more than may well transport up to 1 ounce of cannabis in their autos if the following situations are met:

  • The cannabis solution is locked away and in an unopened container. If the solution seal is broken, you can be charged with a website traffic offense.
  • If the solution has been opened, it can not be stored in the passenger/cabin location of the automobile. It have to be locked in the trunk.

In early May well 2019, Colorado lawmakers passed legislation that would regulate cannabis delivery. The law is probably to be implemented sometime in 2020. 

Driving Beneath the Influence

Driving beneath the influence of marijuana is illegal in Colorado. Though there is no roadside device for the detection of THC, Colorado law enforcement officers educated as drug recognition authorities will make arrests primarily based on observed impairment.

If a drug test detects five nanograms of active THC, you can be prosecuted for driving beneath the influence. If you refuse to take a blood test, you will be thought of a higher-threat driver. This status calls for two years of mandatory ignition interlock and level two alcohol and therapy classes regardless of no matter if you are convicted of a crime or not. Even if utilizing cannabis to medicate an illness, becoming impaired even though driving can outcome in the following:

  • a charge of youngster abuse if a youngster is present in the automobile
  • fail time
  • a $13,500+ fine
  • driver’s license suspension

Exporting Cannabis

According to Federal and state law, it is illegal to export or import cannabis from or to Colorado. Even if you are traveling to a state that has legalized cannabis, you are not authorized to take cannabis across state lines.

If you are a Colorado resident, you have to leave your cannabis at residence if traveling out of the state. If you are going to Colorado, you have to either consume or safely discard of your cannabis solution ahead of arriving at the airport or crossing state lines to return residence.

It is illegal to bring cannabis to an airport or federal land.

Private Cultivation

Colorado law authorizes residents aged 21 and older to develop up to 12 cannabis plants at residence for private use. Up to three of these plants may well be flowering at a time. Counties and municipalities may well have stricter limits.

Homegrown cannabis have to be stored in a locked, separate space that is inaccessible by minors and obstructed from public view. It can not be grown outdoors.

Up to 1 ounce of homegrown cannabis can be provided away, but it can not be sold.

Health-related Marijuana in Colorado

Though cannabis is legal for private use, health-related sufferers may well nonetheless seek to participate in the health-related plan. The plan makes it possible for sufferers to access much more cannabis than the recreational law permits.  On top of that, the age limits are significantly less prohibitive. Adults aged 18 and more than may well participate, and pediatric sufferers may well participate in the plan if they and their main guardian are Colorado residents.

Adult and pediatric sufferers with 1 or much more of the following qualifying, debilitating health-related situations may well be eligible to participate in the Colorado Health-related Marijuana Registry:

  • Cancer
  • Glaucoma
  • HIV or AIDS
  • Cachexia
  • Persistent muscle spasms
  • Seizures
  • Serious nausea
  • Serious discomfort
  • Post traumatic pressure disorder
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Any situation for which a doctor could prescribe an opioid

The situation have to be diagnosed by a doctor the patient has a bona fide patient-physician connection. The doctor have to confirm the info presented on the doctor certification element of the application.

A patient or doctor may well file a petition with the Colorado Division of Public Overall health and Environment’s State Board of Overall health to add a debilitating health-related situation to the existing list.

Individuals can apply for a health-related marijuana card by mail or on the web.  There is a non-refundable $25 application processing charge that have to be paid each and every time an application is submitted.

Cannabis Legalization in Colorado: A Timeline

2000 – Colorado legalizes the restricted use of cannabis for health-related sufferers and their caregivers.

2010 – Colorado enacts the Colorado Health-related Marijuana Code, the regulatory framework facilitating the distribution of health-related cannabis

2012 – Colorado becomes the initially of two states in the globe to legalize cannabis for private use. Washington is the other state.

2019 – Colorado passes legislation that legalizes the regulation of cannabis delivery and public consumption facilities.


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