Marijuana laws are constantly changing. Pot is legal in 10 states and in the District of Columbia, and legalization is on the docket in even more jurisdictions. According to a recent poll, 60 percent of Americans support marijuana’s legalization, and 63 percent of respondents think that people convicted of marijuana possession should have it expunged from their records.
While states around the country are decriminalizing and legalizing recreational marijuana, Texas laws regarding cannabis are still harsh. Sentencing guidelines include jailtime, steep fines and mandatory minimums.
The penalties for simple possession of marijuana in Texas vary based on the amount marijuana possessed. The penalties for simple possession are as follows:
- Possession of 2 ounces or less is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 180 days in jail and a fine of up to $2,000.
- Possession of 2-4 ounces is a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail and a fine of up to $4,000.
- Possession of 4 ounces to 5 pounds is a felony punished by at least 180 days in jail and up to two years. It also carries a fine of up to $10,000.
- Possession of 5-50 pounds is a felony punished by at least two years in jail and up to 10 years. It also carries a fine of up to $10,000.
- Possession of 50-2,000 pounds is a felony punished by at least two years in jail and up to 20 years. It also carries a fine of up to $10,000.
- Possession of more than 2,000 pounds is a felony punished by at least five years in jail and up to 99 years. It also carries a fine of up to $50,000.
Possession of hash and concentrates
Possession of hashish or other marijuana concentrates is always a felony regardless of the amount. Depending on how much hash or concentrates you possess, jailtime ranges from 180 days to life in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.
Currently, medical marijuana is only legal in Texas in the form of cannabidiol products with low amounts of THC. It is only prescribed to people with intractable epilepsy whose condition hasn’t responded to other medications.
However, earlier this month the Texas House of Representatives passed a bill to expand the medical marijuana program, allowing patients with Alzheimer’s disease, Crohn’s diseases, muscular dystrophy and many other illnesses to access marijuana treatment.
Texas takes marijuana crimes seriously. If you are charged with marijuana possession or other drug crimes, you may want to seek the guidance of an attorney to avoid all the repercussions that can come with a conviction.