Consumers: Know the Law

In November 2016, California voters approved Proposition 64, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act, which legalized the possession and use of cannabis by adults 21 years of age and older without a physician’s recommendation. In addition, Proposition 64 established a statewide regulatory framework covering all aspects of the commercial cannabis supply chain, from cultivation to testing, to manufacturing, distribution, and sales. Under the “local control” provisions of Proposition 64, each city and county in California can decide whether to allow commercial cannabis activities within their jurisdiction.

  • Proposition 64 legalized the cultivation of up to six cannabis plants per residence for personal use by adults.
  • No matter where you live, cannabis businesses need BOTH a state and local license to legally operate.
  • Smoking cannabis or consuming cannabis products in public is prohibited.
  • Driving under the influence of cannabis is prohibited.
  • Smoking cannabis or consuming cannabis products if you are under the age of 21 is ILLEGAL, unless you have a medical recommendation from a doctor.

Where can I buy cannabis legally?

You can only buy cannabis at retail outlets licensed by the California Bureau of Cannabis Control and the local licensing authority, such as a city or county.

Keep in mind that the cultivation, possession, sale, and use of cannabis may remain unlawful under federal law, and therefore may affect immigration status.

Employers have the right to prohibit the use of cannabis by their employees, so check your workplace policies.

How can I determine which businesses are licensed?

All cannabis businesses must have both a state and local license to operate.

You can verify the status of a business’s state license on these webpages:

Retailers, testing labs, distributors and microbusinesses

Manufacturers

Where can I consume cannabis?

Individuals who are 21 or older may consume cannabis on private property. However, if you rent, keep in mind that landlords have the right to limit or prohibit cannabis use on their privately-owned properties.

It is illegal to smoke cannabis in public places or anywhere that tobacco smoking is prohibited.

Under state law, cannabis consumption may be permitted on the premises of a cannabis retailer (i.e. a cannabis lounge), but only if the local jurisdiction allows it.

Please check with your local licensing body to find out if businesses licensed for commercial cannabis consumption are permitted and where they are located.

Is my medical marijuana identification card or doctor’s recommendation still valid?

Yes, it is still valid. It is legal to purchase medical cannabis if you are 18 years of age or older and you have a current physician’s recommendation. Possession, cultivation, transport and administration of medicinal cannabis is also legal for persons 18 years of age and older who have been designated as a Primary Caregiver of a patient with a valid physician’s recommendation. For more information on obtaining a Los Angeles County-issued medical marijuana identification card, please visit the Department of Public Health’s webpage.[

Can I grow cannabis in my home?

Under state law, adults 21 or older can cultivate up to six cannabis plants in or on the grounds of their private residence.

The plants must be in a locked space and not visible to the public.

Many cities and counties limit or prohibit outdoor cannabis cultivation, and some may require growers to obtain a permit. Check with your local jurisdiction to find out their rules.

If you live in an unincorporated area of Los Angeles County, click here for a summary of the rules and requirements for personal cannabis cultivation.

Remember that it is illegal to sell any amount of cannabis without obtaining state and local licenses. It is also illegal and dangerous to use volatile solvents such as butane for manufacturing concentrated cannabis at home.

Are cannabis products required to be tested for potency and quality?

Testing is required for all cannabis products cultivated or manufactured after January 1, 2018 that is sold in licensed and regulated cannabis businesses. Illicit cannabis businesses that sell without a legal permit or license are not regulated, and thus their products may not have been tested. You can go to this website [LINK] to see which businesses are licensed and carry products that have been appropriately tested for quality.

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