Medical Marijuana in Ohio and Marijuana OVI
The lawyers of The Martinez Firm understand that Ohio’s recent enactment of a medical
marijuana program has people confused and afraid when they find themselves on the other side of an arrest for the use or possession of marijuana. We also understand that any criminal arrest can have devastating effects on your life and career. Law enforcement’s misunderstanding of the law as well as legal issues regarding weight or the legal form of cannabis or intent, could have you facing a significant amount of time in prison and years of probation.
Medical marijuana is permitted for medical use in the State of Ohio only if prescribed by a doctor and only for certain qualifying medical conditions. The qualifying medical conditions include: AIDS – HIV, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), Alzheimer’s Disease, Cancer, Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), Crohn’s Disease, Epilepsy or another seizure disorder, Fibromyalgia, Glaucoma, Hepatitis C, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Multiple Sclerosis (MS), Chronic Intractable and Severe Pain, Parkinson’s Disease, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Sickle Cell Anemia, Spinal Cord Disease or injury, Tourette’s Syndrome, Traumatic Brain Injury and Ulcerative Colitis. In September 2019, the State Medical Board refused to include anxiety disorders and the autism spectrum in Ohio’s medical marijuana programs. Only doctors approved by the State Medical Board are permitted to prescribe medicinal marijuana in the State of Ohio. Patients and caregivers are permitted to possess up to a ninety (90) day supply of medical marijuana.
In January 2019, the first medical marijuana dispensaries opened in the State of Ohio. As of July 2019, there were over 42,000 patients registered in Ohio’s medical marijuana program, however, only about half are purchasing from the dispensaries due to a limited supply of medical marijuana and high prices. Despite these issues, companies are still attempting to enter Ohio’s medical marijuana business as the potential revenue from Ohio’s medical marijuana program is expected to grow tremendously over the next couple of years.
Medical Marijuana and Marijuana OVI Arrest
Ohio’s medical marijuana program will cause problems in terms of enforcement of marijuana laws, drug crimes and OVI and DUI arrests. Additionally, law enforcement’s zealous, yet untrained, approach to the enforcement of marijuana laws will cause Ohio residents who are not familiar with the state’s medical marijuana laws to be subjected to arrest and prosecution. One area of the law that is being impacted by Ohio’s medical marijuana program is the rapid increase in marijuana OVI prosecutions.
Unfortunately, Ohio’s Impaired Driving Laws created a “per se” limit for marijuana metabolites in a person’s system that has no relation to impairment. Having marijuana metabolites in your system simply indicates past use and the metabolites are the inactive, broken down components of the psychoactive component of marijuana which is tetrahydrocannabinol or THC. Under Ohio law, the threshold limit for a Marijuana OVI is 35 nanograms (ng) of marijuana metabolites per milliliter (ml) of urine or 50 ng of marijuana metabolites per ml of blood. As such, a person who is legally prescribed medical marijuana may be prosecuted under Ohio’s Marijuana OVI laws even if they do not have the psychoactive components of marijuana (THC) in their system at the time they are operating a vehicle.
What Should You Do Now
If you are charged with a marijuana crime or a Marijuana OVI in Ohio, contact The Martinez Firm. We will ensure that you are aggressively defended and that your rights are protected. Our firm has been assisting clients who are arrested for drug crimes in the greater Cleveland, Ohio area for over 20 years. Do not go it alone. Let our experienced drug crimes and marijuana crimes attorneys assist you.
Northeast Ohio Marijuana Crime Attorneys
We represent clients facing various drug charges including the following:
- Possession of marijuana drug paraphernalia
- Distribution of illegal drugs
- Marijuana trafficking
- Illegal cultivation or growth of marijuana
- Large drug conspiracies including those charged as a federal crime
- Marijuana OVI/DUI
If you have been charged with a marijuana drug crime, it is very likely that you will be facing a prison sentence if you are convicted. In addition to jail time, a conviction of a drug crime leads to a mandatory suspension of your driver’s license. And if you are not a United States citizen, a conviction for a drug crime can lead to your deportation. Our firm will work to prevent you from suffering these serious consequences by lodging constitutional challenges to stops and searches.
Once you have hired The Martinez Firm, our drug charge lawyers will immediately start working on your case to make sure that your rights are protected. We have experience working closely with detectives, FBI investigators, and ATF and DEA agents. Our knowledge of threshold amounts, testing equipment, proper police procedures, and constitutional law can help you in your legal battle with the government.