New Mexico

Legislation History

In 2007, the New Mexico Legislature passed The Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act, or SB 523. SB 523 offers patients and caregivers access to the beneficial use of medical cannabis in a system regulated by the New Mexico Department of Health (DOH). Currently, cannabis access is exclusively reserved for qualified patients and their caregivers.


Recreational sale, possession or consumption of cannabis is prohibited. However, in April 2018, Albuquerque, New Mexico’s biggest city, decriminalized possession of small amounts of cannabis and drug paraphernalia.


The DOH has developed rules and regulations to establish, implement, and administer the statewide Medical Cannabis Program. Possession or consumption of cannabis would result in serious criminal penalties for consumers who are not registered patients or caregivers.

Where is it Safe to Purchase?

Patients and caregivers can only purchase medical cannabis from state-licensed nonprofit producers. If patients are unable to make purchases themselves, a caregiver can purchase and deliver medical cannabis on their behalf. Additionally, state-licensed delivery services are available to patients for cannabis purchases.


Qualified patients may apply for a personal production license, allowing enrollees to grow for personal use.


There is no tax imposed on medical cannabis.

Where is it Safe to Consume?

Medical cannabis consumption in the state of New Mexico is limited to private property, out of the public view.


Driving under the influence of cannabis is illegal and consumption in a vehicle is not allowed, neither while driving nor while riding as passengers.


Only patients in the registry, and their designated caregivers, can legally possess medical cannabis. A qualifying patient has access to ​no more than eight ounces (8 oz.), or 226.8 grams, of usable cannabis over over a three (3)-month period. Once approved, patients and their caregivers can have a combined total of 16 plants, limited to 4 mature plants and 12 seedlings.


How Old Do I Need
to Be to Consume?
Possession Limit
for Flower
8oz/90 days
Possession Limit
for Concentrates
8oz/90 days


Patients in the registry are authorized to purchase and consume medical cannabis if they meet certain requirements for eligibility. Patients who have received a physician’s certification for a qualifying condition must submit an application and a valid New Mexico ID card to the DOH. Once submitted, an application is reviewed medically and administratively to ensure that all requirements are met.


Upon approval, registration and written certifications are valid for up to one year.


Patients are required to submit renewal applications at least 30 days before their registry card expires. The DOH does not charge a fee to process patient applications, to provide, or to renew patient registry cards.

Qualifying Conditions

  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or Lou Gehrig’s disease
  • Cancer
  • Cervical dystonia
  • Crohn’s Disease
  • Epilepsy
  • Glaucoma
  • Hepatitis C
  • Hospice Care
  • Huntington’s Disease
  • Inclusion-body myositis
  • Inflammatory autoimmune-mediated arthritis
  • Intractable nausea or vomiting
  • Intractable spasticity
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Painful peripheral neuropathy
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Severe anorexia or cachexia (wasting syndrome)
  • Severe chronic pain
  • Ulcerative colitis

Application Process

  1. Complete a patient registry application.
  2. Obtain a valid written certification from a qualified healthcare provider.
  3. Provide a state-issued driver’s license or identification card to establish proof of New Mexico residency.
  4. Designate a caregiver, if applicable.
  5. Receive a registry identification card; there is no fee for the card.  

Caregiver Requirements

Patients in the registry who require assistance obtaining or using medical cannabis may

designate up to two (2) caregivers. Caregivers must be at least 21 years old and may only provide care for one (1) patient. Caregivers are required to submit their application along with their designating patients. Patients younger than age 18 are required to designate at least one (1) adult caregiver in order to submit an application. Only parents and legal guardians are eligible to serve as caregivers of minor patients.

Application Process

  1. Submit caregiver application.
  2. Provide proof of New Mexico residency in the form of a state-issued driver’s license or identification card.
  3. Complete criminal background check.
  4. Receive a registry identification card, for which there is no fee.

Lab Testing

The DOH requires state-licensed nonprofit producers to contract with at least one (1) independent testing laboratory to ensure that all safety and quality assurance requirements are met.


Certified labs must test for the following:

  • Cannabinoids
  • Fungal mycotoxins
  • Heavy metals
  • Microbiological contaminants
  • Moisture and water content
  • Residual solvents


This page was last updated on May 17, 2018.