North Carolina

Recreational marijuana is not legal in North Carolina, but possession of small amounts of flower marijuana (0.5 oz or less) is treated as a minor misdemeanor. Those found guilty face a fine of $200 only. Possession of less than 0.05 oz of THC concentrate is also a misdemeanor and those found guilty face a $200 fine, as well as up to 10 days of incarceration. Possession of 0.5-1.5 oz of flower marijuana or 0.05-0.15 oz of concentrate is also a misdemeanor, but the penalties for are more severe. Those found guilty of possessing this amount of flower marijuana could be punished with between 1-45 days incarceration and a fine of $200. 


Possession of larger amounts of marijuana is a felony, especially if one intends to sell or distribute. Simple possession of more than 1.5 oz but less than 10 lbs of flower marijuana is punishable by up to 8 months of incarceration and a fine of $1,000. Simple possession of more than 0.15 oz of THC concentrate is punishable by up to 6 months in jail and a fine of $200.


Cultivation is also a felony with the following penalty structure:
•    Less than 10 lbs: Up to 8 months of incarceration and a maximum fine of $1,000.
•    10-50 lbs: A mandatory minimum sentence of 2 years and a maximum sentence of up to 2.5 years of incarceration, as well as a maximum fine of $5,000.
•    50-2000 lbs: A mandatory minimum sentence of 3 years and a maximum sentence of up to 3.5 years of incarceration, as well as a maximum fine of $25,000.
•    2000-10,000 lbs: A mandatory minimum sentence of 6 years and a maximum sentence of up to 7 years of incarceration, as well as a maximum fine of $50,000.
•    More than 10,000 lbs: A mandatory minimum sentence of 14.5 years and a maximum sentence of up to 18 years of incarceration, as well as a maximum fine of $200,000.


North Carolina does not currently have a medical marijuana program. According to the North Carolina Epilepsy Alternative Treatment Act, only individuals with intractable epilepsy as determined by a board-certified neurologist affiliated with a hospital licensed in North Carolina may possess or consume low-THC cannabis formulations that contain at least 5% CBD and no more than 0.9% THC. Their caretakers are protected from prosecution for possession of a controlled substance.

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