Connecticut

Is weed legal in Connecticut?

Adult-use, or recreational, weed is illegal but medical marijuana is legal for patients with qualifying conditions and a medical marijuana certificate. In addition, possession of less than 0.5 ounces of weed has been decriminalized across the state.

Related: Find licensed dispensaries in Connecticut 

Legislation history

Gov. Dannel Malloy signed Senate Bill 1014 in 2011 to decriminalize the possession of up to 0.5 ounce (14 grams) of cannabis. Offenders don't face jail time but pay increasing fines for subsequent offenses.

In 2012, the state enacted House Bill 5389, which legalized medical marijuana.

Where is it safe to purchase weed in Connecticut?

Registered patients and registered primary caregivers may purchase medical cannabis from licensed dispensaries. Individuals may not purchase an amount of cannabis that would cause them to exceed possession limits of 2.5 ounces (57 grams) per month. Patients designate a licensed dispensary when they apply for a medical marijuana card.

Registered patients may purchase flower, edibles, concentrates, topicals, and tinctures, as well as consumption accessories. Patients are responsible for state and local sales taxes at the time of purchase.

Finding licensed dispensaries in Connecticut

Medical marijuana cardholders can find licensed dispensaries in Connecticut and search by major metro areas including Bridgeport, Danbury, and Norwalk. 

Where is it safe to consume weed in Connecticut?

Registered patients in Connecticut may ingest their cannabis medicine only in private spaces. Connecticut law prohibits medical cannabis use on public transportation, in the workplace, on school or university campuses, in public places, or in the presence of anyone younger than 18 (which applies to private use as well). The law also prohibits the use of medical marijuana that would endanger the health or well-being of another person.

Registered patients may consume flower, edibles, concentrates, topicals, and tinctures, as well as possess and use consumption accessories. State law prohibits home-based manufacturing of edibles.

Possessing medical cannabis in Connecticut

Patients may possess up to 2.5 ounces (57 grams) per month unless their physician indicates a lesser amount is appropriate. State law prohibits the gifting or exchange of medical cannabis between any entities except between a patient and primary caregiver.

Landlords cannot refuse to rent to or otherwise take action against an individual based solely on their status as a registered patient. Schools, likewise, cannot refuse enrollment based solely on a person's status as a registered patient. Employers cannot refuse to hire or choose to fire registered patients based solely on their patient status, though employers may prohibit the use of cannabis during work hours.

Since cannabis was decriminalized in Connecticut in 2011, non-patients caught with 0.5 ounce (14 grams) or less may have to pay a civil penalty of $150 to $500 for the first and second offenses, respectively. Possession of more than 0.5 ounce is a misdemeanor with a possible fine of up to $2,000 and up to one year of jail time.

Home cultivation

Home cultivation is prohibited in Connecticut. Registered patients and primary caregivers may obtain medical cannabis only from licensed dispensaries.

Medical marijuana

Connecticut's Department of Consumer Protection (DCP) oversees the state's medical marijuana program.

Qualifying conditions

  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or Lou Gehrig's disease
  • Cachexia, or wasting disease
  • Cancer
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Chronic pain
  • Crohn's disease
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Epilepsy
  • Fibromyalgia, including associated neuropathic pain or spasticity
  • Glaucoma
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Hydrocephalus, or cranial fluid buildup, with an intractable headache
  • Interstitial cystitis
  • Intractable headache syndromes
  • Median arcuate ligament syndrome
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Nervous tissue or spinal cord damage or injuries, including irreversible spinal cord injury with intractable spasticity
  • Osteogenesis imperfecta, or brittle bone disease
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Postherpetic neuralgia, or shingles
  • Post-laminectomy syndrome with chronic radiculopathy, or failed back syndrome
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Psoriatic arthritis and severe psoriasis
  • Severe rheumatoid arthritis
  • Sickle cell disease
  • Terminal illness requiring end-of-life care
  • Tourette syndrome
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Uncontrolled intractable seizure disorder
  • Vulvodynia and vulvar burning

Patients younger than 18 must be diagnosed with one of the following conditions:

  • Cerebral palsy
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Intractable Neuropathic Pain
  • Irreversible spinal cord Injury with intractable spasticity
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Osteogenesis imperfecta, or brittle bone disease
  • Severe epilepsy
  • Terminal illness requiring end-of-life care
  • Tourette syndrome
  • Uncontrolled intractable seizure disorder

The public can petition the DCP to recommend additions to the list of qualifying conditions.

Patient qualifications

Only Connecticut residents being treated by a licensed physician for a qualifying medical condition may register for medical marijuana.

In addition to their regular physician, minor patients must meet with a board-certified specialist in the field of treatment for their qualifying condition. One of these physicians will submit a certification to the DCP, while the other must provide the parent or guardian caregiver with a letter confirming that medical cannabis use is in the patient's best interest.

State law does not require government or private insurance companies to cover medical marijuana use.

Medical marijuana registry

  1. Visit a licensed physician who will submit a certificate to the DCP for patients suffering from a qualifying condition
  2. Create an account with the Connecticut Department of Administrative Services (DAS) Business Network
  3. Select the “I am a Patient” option, fill in all identification information, and upload proof of identity, proof of residency, and a color photograph
  4. Pay a $100 application fee

The registration expires one year after the physician's certification date.

Caregiver qualifications

If a patient's doctor certifies the need for a primary caregiver, the patient may appoint and register one person to assist in accessing and administering medical cannabis.

The caregiver must be at least 18 years old and cannot be the patient's physician or be convicted of a controlled substance violation. Caregivers can only be responsible for one patient at a time unless there is a parent, guardian, or sibling relationship with each patient.

Parents or legal guardians are required to serve as the primary caregivers for patients younger than 18.

Caregiver registration process

The patient must receive written certification from a physician that indicates the need for a primary caregiver.

The caregiver will:

  1. Receive an email sign-up link from the registered patient's application process
  2. Create an account with the DAS Business Network
  3. Select the “I am a Caregiver” option, fill in identification information, and upload proof of identity, proof of residency, and a color photo
  4. Pay the $25 application fee 

The registration expires one year after the physician's certification date.

Patients must include their caregiver's information when applying for Connecticut's Medical Marijuana Program.

Reciprocity

Connecticut state law only allows qualified patients who are residents of Connecticut to possess and purchase cannabis at licensed dispensaries. No reciprocity is offered to out-of-state residents.

Lab testing

Licensed producers must use a state-licensed lab to test every batch of cannabis for quality assurance. Laboratories must test samples for:

  • Active ingredients
  • Heavy metals
  • Microbiological contaminants
  • Mycotoxins
  • Pesticides

Producers must have lab results for each medical marijuana batch purchased by a dispensary and provide them on request to qualified patients, caregivers, and physicians with certified patients.

Frequently asked questions

How do you get a medical marijuana card in CT?

The state's Medical Marijuana Program website has everything you'll need, but the basic steps are:

  • Visit a licensed physician who will submit a certificate to the Department of Consumer Protection if you suffer from a qualifying condition
  • Create an account with the Connecticut Department of Administrative Services (DAS) Business Network
  • Select the “I am a Patient” option, fill in all identification information, and upload proof of identity, proof of residency, and a color photograph
  • Pay a $100 application fee

When did Connecticut legalize weed?

In 2012, the state enacted House Bill 5389, which legalized medical marijuana.

This page was last updated January 20, 2021. 

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The information contained in this site is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical or legal advice. This page was last updated on January 29, 2021.