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Washington Cannabis Laws

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Legal status

  • Fully legal

Possession limits

  • Medical patients

    3 oz

  • Recreational users

    1 oz

State taxes

  • Medical patients


  • Recreational users



  • Medical patients

    6 plants; up to 15 plants if recommendedIf enrolled in database

  • Recreational users


  • Cultivation is legal
Learn more

Application process

To apply for a medical cannabis card in the state of Washington

Get approved by a doctor, then apply to the state medical marijuana program. Receive your MMJ card and start shopping for your medical cannabis from a licensed dispensary.

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Table of contents

  1. Marijuana Laws in Washington
  2. What to Know About About Medical Cannabis in Washington
  3. Can You Grow Cannabis In Washington?
  4. The Bottom Line

Cannabis is legal for recreational and medical purposes in Washington state. However, delta-8 and other products derived from chemically changing CBD to delta-8 are illegal. There also remain restrictions on public consumption, driving while under the influence, and underage purchase and consumption of cannabis.

Marijuana Laws in Washington

Marijuana laws differ across the country. Each program is unique, so it’s essential to stay current on the rules and regulations that are constantly changing in whatever state, district, or territory you’re in.

Medical Cannabis Laws

Washington legalized medical cannabis in 1998. Since then, there have been many expansions to the legal program for medical card holders, including employee protections, state law enforcement policy updates, and cultivation permissions.

Medical cannabis patients registered with the state’s voluntary patients database can possess 3 ounces of usable flower, 21 grams of cannabis concentrate, 216 ounces of marijuana-infused product in liquid form, or 48 ounces of marijuana-infused product in solid form. These limits can be exceeded if the patient’s doctor recommends it.

Medical cannabis patients registered with the state in the voluntary patient database can grow up to six mature cannabis plants for medicine and personal use. If a patient is not registered in the database, they can grow no more than four plants.

While medical patients still pay the 37% excise tax attached to all marijuana products in the state, they are exempt from paying the sales tax, offering them a small break.

Recreational Marijuana Laws

In 2012, Washington became one of the first states to legalize recreational cannabis in the country with the passage of Initiative Measure 502. Sales from state-licensed dispensaries did not commence until 2014.

Washington has some of the highest marijuana taxes in the country. Customers pay a 37% excise tax, 6.5% sales tax, and any existing local tax on cannabis products.

Recreational users can possess 1 ounce of dry cannabis flower, 7 grams of cannabis concentrate, 72 ounces of marijuana-infused product in liquid form, or 16 ounces of marijuana-infused product in solid form.

Violating possession limits or selling cannabis without a license can incur penalties, including fines and jail time. Fines can range anywhere from $50 to $20,000. Sentences can vary from 24 hours to ten years, depending on the severity of the offense.

CBD is also legal in Washington state. However, delta-8, delta-10 THC, THC-O, and other forms of what the state classifies as “synthetic THC” products are illegal for sale. Violators caught selling these products can have their licenses revoked.

Cultivation is also unlawful for recreational users in Washington. Only medical cannabis patients are permitted to grow cannabis at home.

What to Know About About Medical Cannabis in Washington

There are many benefits afforded registered medical cannabis patients in Washington, including paying less in taxes, employee protections, the ability to grow at home, and increased possession limits. Before getting your medical cannabis certification, get to know some of the critical aspects of the program, such as qualifying conditions and telemedicine allowances.

Qualifying Conditions for Medical Cannabis in Washington

According to the state of Washington, an individual must have a “terminal or debilitating medical condition” to qualify for medical cannabis. The state defines a debilitating medical condition as “severe enough to significantly interfere with the patient’s activities of daily living and ability to function, which can be objectively assessed and evaluated.” Qualifying conditions include the following:

Telemedicine Is Allowed for MMJ Certification

Telehealth services are permitted for medical cannabis certification and renewal in the state of Washington. Contact Leafwell to start your application today and get professional guidance through every step of the process.

Getting your medical marijuana card doesn’t need to be complicated or overly time-consuming. Let us help connect you to a certifying doctor in a few easy steps.

Washington Does Not Have Reciprocity Laws

Washington does not have reciprocity laws. So, if you’re an out-of-state patient visiting Washington, you are not afforded the protections and benefits that residents receive. There are, however, many states and U.S. territories that do have reciprocity laws and will honor your Washington medical card, including:

*Visitors must complete a visiting patient application with the state program.

States that have recreational cannabis for adults 21 and older but do not accept out-of-state cards include:

Can You Grow Cannabis In Washington?

Cultivation is only allowed for medical patients in Washington. Cardholders registered with the voluntary-patient identification registry are permitted to grow up to six plants. If they are not part of the patient registry, medical patients can grow up to four mature plants.

Growing marijuana for personal use is still prohibited. However, a bill making its way through the state legislature aims to change that. HB 1614, if passed, would allow adults 21 years or older to grow up to six plants with a maximum of 15 plants per household.

The Bottom Line

Washington is a fully legal state, meaning it has both medical and recreational cannabis programs. There remain restrictions on possession, hemp-derived cannabinoids (e.g., delta-8 THC), cultivation for personal use, public consumption, and cannabis use by minors. There are many benefits to getting a medical cannabis card in Washington, including reduced taxes, cultivation permissions, and employee protections.

Qualify for Cannabis

If you live in a state with a medical program you could qualify for cannabis. Speak to a physician today to qualify and learn how cannabis can help you.