How to Get a Medical Marijuana Card in Montana in 2023
Article written by
Shanti RyleContent Writer
Content reviewed by
Ruth LemonVP of Operations
Table of contents
Getting a Montana medical marijuana certificate online is now possible thanks to advances in telemedicine. Following the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, clinics nationwide have expanded their telehealth platforms to assist patients who need a physician’s expertise, particularly those exploring medical cannabis as a means to address specific medical issues.
With Leafwell, it is quick, simple, and secure to get a Montana Medical Marijuana Card online. We’ve assembled this valuable guide to answer any questions and help individuals living in Montana State understand the importance of applying for their Montana MMJ Card via our easy, HIPAA-compliant platform.
Personalized Cannabis Guidance
Benefits of Having a Medical Card in Montana
While adult-use cannabis is legal in Montana, many benefits are afforded solely to medical marijuana cardholders. Both adults 21 and older and registered cardholders may possess up to one ounce of usable marijuana at a time. However, adult-use products may not exceed 35% total THC per dry flower weight, with other potency limits on different product types. This means medical users have access to higher-potency medicine than adult-use consumers.
Medical users also only pay a 4% sales tax on cannabis products, while recreational users pay 22% in total taxes.
Patients must be aged 18 or over and reside in the state to qualify for a Montana medical marijuana card for themselves.
Can Minors Get a Medical Card in Montana?
Minors who need medical marijuana or those older than 18 but cannot access cannabis for themselves need a caregiver, known in Montana as a “provider.” Providers must be aged 21 or over and, in the case of a minor, be the patient’s parent or legal guardian.
Here are the medical conditions which qualify for an MMJ ID Card in Montana:
- Cachexia or wasting syndrome
- Chronic pain that significantly interferes with daily activities as documented by the patient’s treating physician and by objective proof of the cause of the pain and a second opinion from an independent doctor
- Crohn’s disease
- Epilepsy or an intractable seizure disorder
- Multiple sclerosis (MS)
- Nausea or vomiting
- Painful peripheral neuropathy
- Any central nervous system (CNS) disorder
How to Apply
Documents You’ll Need
You must show some identification documents to apply for your MMJ Card in Montana. You should gather together the following:
- Photo ID, such as a driver’s license, valid U.S. passport, or state-issued ID
- Two proofs of address, such as a bank statement, utility bill, or rental agreement
- Medical records; these aren’t required, but they’re helpful for practitioners to understand your medical history and situation better.
Steps to Apply
- Register online with Leafwell. It’s quick and easy to safely upload your data and medical records on our state-of-the-art telemedicine platform.
- Speak with a certified physician licensed in Montana state. Leafwell’s consultation fee is $149 for an examination. The process is quick, simple, and HIPAA-compliant, and most appointments take 15 minutes or less.
- Submit your application to the state’s website. You must submit your doctor’s certificate, personal information, and proof of identification to the Montana state website. During the application, you will need to state whether you plan to grow your own cannabis or shop at a dispensary — you cannot do both. If registered cardholders are growing marijuana for their use only, they do not need to have a background check or register as a provider. Registered cardholder names will not be on a list given to law enforcement. Law enforcement can call the department to verify that individuals are registered cardholders or providers.
- Once approved, you can print your medical marijuana card that same day. This temporary access certificate allows you to shop immediately at any Montana dispensary. A card from the Montana state program will be mailed to you within 30 days.
It is a requirement for patients to register with the Montana Medical Marijuana Program and the DPHSS. The state maintains a confidential list of persons with patient ID cards. Only the Montana Department of Health and Human Services and state and local law enforcement agencies may access the list. Law enforcement may only access the list to verify a person’s patient status.
If your MMJ Card is due to expire, Leafwell also offers renewal services for $149. Get in touch with Leafwell today and book your appointment to obtain your renewal certificate.
What to Expect During Your Leafwell Appointment
Your online medical marijuana evaluation with Leafwell is quick and easy. We’ll need you to provide some preliminary details to start. There is also an opportunity to upload some medical records, although this is optional. These are all passed securely to one of our registered physicians, who can familiarize themselves with your application before your consultation.
The consultation is simple and secure, taking place on our bespoke telemedicine platform. You will meet with a Montana registered practitioner who has experience issuing certificates for medical marijuana to patients for a range of medical issues. The registered practitioner will speak with you about why you are applying and ask some questions about your medical conditions and history.
At the end of the consultation, the registered practitioner can make an informed decision about whether they recommend using medical cannabis based on the medical information they have obtained. If an application is successful, the registered practitioner will complete the certification and then promptly email the electronic version of the certificate in PDF. You can use this to apply to the Montana State Department, where you can also download a digital card the same day. A hard copy will be sent in the mail within 30 days.
If an application is unsuccessful, you will receive an email detailing why our registered practitioner could not provide you with the certificate. You will not be charged for the consultation.
The consultation with a Montana registered practitioner via Leafwell’s HIPAA-compliant online consultation service is a one-off fee of $149. However, you will only be charged if you qualify for an MMJ Card and our practitioner your certificate.
Upon receiving your certificate, you can submit your application to the Montana government. The application fee, payable to the state, is $30. The application cost for a Montana caregiver application is $25.
Leafwell also offers renewal services from $149.
Because cannabis is federally illegal, insurance companies will not cover any costs incurred from applying for a medical marijuana card.
Medical Marijuana Reciprocity
Patients from other states must register with the DPHHS and are not offered reciprocity in Montana. Legal protections for qualified patients are limited to Montana registry ID cardholders. If you are a medical marijuana patient from out-of-state, Montana’s medical marijuana laws do not protect you.
Some states accept Montana medical marijuana cards. This is called reciprocity. The following states and regions accept Montana medical cannabis cards:
- Alaska ^
- Arkansas *
- California ^
- Colorado ^
- Connecticut ^
- Hawaii *
- Illinois ^
- Maryland ^ (as of July 2023)
- Michigan (qualifying state must also have reciprocity with Michigan)
- Missouri ^
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey *
- New Mexico * (recreational cannabis is legal in NM)
- New York ^
- Oklahoma *
- Oregon ^
- Pennsylvania (minors only)
- Puerto Rico
- Rhode Island
- U.S. Virgin Islands *
- Utah (max. 45 days, after which the patient must apply for a Utah MMJ card)
- Vermont ^
- Virginia ^
- Washington ^
- Washington D.C.
States marked with * require visitors to complete a visiting patient application for the duration of their stay.
States marked with ^ have adult use programs but do not accept out-of-state cards.
Applying as a Caregiver
Caregivers in Montana must register as “providers.” Caregivers must be aged 21 or over. The caregiver fills out their own application form and must also be listed on the patient’s application form. Both users and caregivers must complete the necessary paperwork for them to become registered providers.
Caregivers will also need to provide proof of identity and residency. The application cost for a Montana caregiver application is $25.
Please note that having a caregiver card does not give providers the legal right to use cannabis.
Where to Buy Medical Marijuana
In all states with an MMJ program, the only way to purchase medicinal marijuana products is via a legally-licensed medical dispensary or pharmacy or another legally designated space to buy medicinal cannabis. Only those with a legal license to sell medicinal cannabis in Montana can do so.
Montana cardholders or their provider (caregiver) must notify the state of their intent to cultivate on the application form. If the cardholder has not named a provider, the cardholder may possess up to four mature plants, four seedlings, and the amount of usable marijuana allowed by the department by rule (one ounce of usable cannabis).
Those who intend to grow their own cannabis on a rented or leased property must include a Property Owner Permission Form in their application. This can be obtained on the MT state website.
Montana Medical Marijuana Laws to Know
There are restrictions on where MMJ cardholders and recreational cannabis users can consume marijuana. Per Montana marijuana laws, use is not permitted in:
- Healthcare facilities
- Schools or post-secondary schools
- Any property owned or leased by a school or post-secondary school
- School bus or public transit
- Public parks, beaches, and rec/youth centers
- Places of worship
- The open public
- Any location where children’s health could be affected
Both recreational users and medical patients benefit from employee protections regarding their use of cannabis. While employers can still have workplace drug tests, recent laws passed suggest that there may be some protections for medical marijuana patients protecting off-work use.
Employers may still prohibit employees from possessing or consuming cannabis at the workplace. Employers may also take adverse action against employees if their off-duty marijuana use:
- Affects employees’ ability to perform their jobs correctly or affects the safety or responsibilities of others in the company
- Conflicts with a bona fide occupational qualification that is reasonably related to the employee’s employment
- Violates a personal service contract with an employer
- Conflicts with the nature of a non-profit organization and its objectives, whose objectives include discouraging the use of marijuana
Apply for a medical marijuana card to start purchasing products from licensed cannabis dispensaries in Montana. Connect with a physician at Leafwell today to get started.
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