Legislative History

Act 242 established Hawaii’s licensing system for medical marijuana dispensaries, and prohibiting counties from enacting zoning regulations that discriminate against licensed dispensaries and production centers. Democratic Gov. David Ige signed the act in 2015. The Medical Cannabis Dispensary Program, created by Act 241, was also established in 2015. The law paved the way for the establishment of dispensaries in Hawaii and also amended existing laws governing the medical use of cannabis.


Recreational cannabis use, possession, and sales are illegal in Hawaii. Medical marijuana patients must register electronically with the state’s Department of Health (DOH) through a certified caregiver. Registered medical cannabis patients and registered caregivers are permitted up to four (4) ounces, or 113.4 grams,  of usable cannabis and can cultivate up to ten (10) plants. Patients can designate a caregiver to assist with acquiring, cultivating and using medical cannabis. Patients and caregivers can use an affirmative defense in court.  

Where is it Safe to Purchase?

Patients can purchase medical cannabis from the state-regulated dispensaries. Hawaiian state law establishes dispensary operating hours as 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Sunday. Patients and caregivers may not purchase more than four (4) ounces, or 113.4 grams, of cannabis within a period of 15 consecutive days, or no more than eight (8) ounces, or 226.8 grams, within a period of 30 consecutive days.

Where is it Safe to Consume?

The law does not allow a patient to medicate if cannabis in any way endangers the health of another person, and it prohibits medicating in a moving vehicle, the workplace, on school grounds, or in a public place.

Possession & Cultivation Limits

Registered medical cannabis patients and registered caregivers area permitted up to four (4) ounces, or 113.4 grams, of usable cannabis and can cultivate up to 10 plants. After Dec. 31, 2023, caregivers will not be allowed to cultivate cannabis for any qualifying patient, except for minors, adults lacking capacity, or on islands that do not have a dispensary.

Medical cannabis must be grown only at a location that identified on a patient’s or caregiver’s registration card. The legally permitted growing areas are the residence of the qualifying patient or of the designated caregiver, or another site that is either owned or controlled by the qualifying patient or the designated caregiver.

How Old Do I Need
to Be to Consume?
Possession Limit
for Flower
Possession Limit
for Concentrates

Medical Marijuana Program

Qualifying Conditions

  • Cancer
  • Epilepsy
  • Glaucoma
  • Lupus
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • A chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or its treatment that produces one or more of the following:
    • Cachexia, or wasting syndrome
    • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
    • Seizures, including those characteristic of epilepsy
    • Severe nausea
    • Severe pain
    • Severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis or Crohn’s disease

Application Process

Applications must be submitted electronically. Patients must first create an eHawaii.gov account and then login at the DOH’s Medical Marijuana Registry , where an online application, accompanying documents, and a $38.50 fee are required. A verified caregiver must also certify the patient’s medical condition and submit an application to the DOH. 


Hawaii does not currently have a reciprocity law. The state does not recognize medical cannabis cards issued by other states. However, Hawaii’s lawmakers have passed a reciprocity law that awaits the approval of Gov. David Ige. The bill includes many amendments to current medical cannabis regulations, as well as establishing reciprocity for qualifying out-of-state medical cannabis patients and caregivers.

Lab Testing

  • cannabinoid profile (including THC)
  • compounds that are considered “active ingredients
  • heavy metals
  • pesticides
  • solvents
  • moisture content
  • microbial contaminants
  • intestinal bacteria and pathogens
  • dangerous molds that can cause infection and disease
  • toxins produced by molds


This page was last updated October 31, 2018.