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Benefits of Getting a Card

Wondering how a medical marijuana card in Washington D.C. can transform your cannabis experience?

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State-Specific Steps

Embarking on your journey to relief in Washington, D.C. is simple. Let our caring specialists guide you through the state-specific steps to obtain your medical cannabis card.
  1. 1

    Register online with Leafwell

    You can speak to a healthcare provider and qualify for a Washington, D.C., medical marijuana card online. The online consultation costs $99, and you are only billed if approved.

  2. 2

    Receive Your Recommendation From Leafwell

    This certificate says that your doctor recommends you become a medical cannabis patient under the district’s current laws, and this certificate is required to apply for your MMJ card if you are under 21 years of age.

    Note: People 21 years of age or older can self-certify and do not need to see a physician to apply for the district’s medical cannabis program.

  3. 3

    Complete the Application on the D.C. Website

    Complete the form in your approval email from Leafwell, including adding the recommendation number on your certificate and the name of your physician. You will need to register with the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration.

  4. 4

    Receive Your Card

    You’ll receive a digital and physical card once your application is complete. Your card will be valid for two years from the date of issue.

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What You Need to Know

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    Eligibility / Patient

    Adults aged 18 and up suffering from a chronic condition that may be treatable with medical marijuana are eligible to apply for a Washington, D.C., medical marijuana card.

    New patients aged 18-20 must register for a consultation with a district-licensed healthcare provider and receive a written recommendation to qualify. That consultation can take place online via telemedicine.

    Patients at least 21 years of age may self-certify their application (this means they do not need to meet with a doctor; they just need to complete the paperwork and submit it to the district).

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    Caregiver

    Washington, D.C., defines a caregiver as a person designated by a qualifying medical cannabis patient as someone authorized to possess, obtain from a dispensary, dispense, and assist in administering medical cannabis. Caregivers must be 18 or older and may only serve one patient at a time. They may possess, administer, or dispense medical marijuana for their qualifying patient.

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    Can Minors Qualify?

    Yes, but for an individual under 18 to participate in the District of Columbia’s medical marijuana program, a custodial parent or legal guardian must submit a Minor Medical Cannabis Patient Application on the minor patient’s behalf.

    Minor patients need a healthcare recommendation number and an identified registered caregiver included in their application.

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Qualifying Condition

There are no specific qualifying conditions a patient must have to be eligible for a medical marijuana card in Washington, D.C. Instead, it is up to the certifying healthcare provider to decide whether medical cannabis is a good option.

Please note: People over 21 can self-certify and do not need to see a physician to apply for a medical marijuana card.

What You Need

You’ll need to provide the following to apply for a Washington, D.C. MMJ card:

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    Medical Marijuana Recommendation (Optional)

    A healthcare provider’s recommendation with a date of issuance within two years of the application date is only required for patients under 21. Those 21 and older may self-certify on their medical card application.

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    Proof of Identity

    You will need a current 2″ x 2″ face photo and a government-issued photo ID, such as a Washington, D.C. driver’s license, ID card, or U.S. passport. Out-of-state ID cards are accepted with two proofs of residency.

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    Proof of Washington, D.C., Residency

    Acceptable proof of residence shows your current address, such as a copy of your D.C. DMV REAL ID with the included address matching the one used in your application, proof of payment of D.C. personal income tax for the tax period closest in time to the application date, a property deed for a D.C. residence showing the applicant as an owner or co-owner, or any other reasonable form of verification deemed by the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration or the Alcohol Beverage Control Board or your designated agent to demonstrate proof of current residency.

    Please note: Patients applying with an out-of-state driver’s license or ID card must submit two proofs of residency with their application, whereas those applying with a valid D.C. ID only need to submit one.

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Cost Information

Save more with Leafwell and get your money back if you’re not approved.

label New with Leafwell Renewal with Leafwell Avg. other competitors
Medical marijuana certificate$99$99$200
District application fee$100$100$100
Total$199$199$300
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Next Steps After Approval

Congratulations on getting your medical certification with Leafwell or for deciding to self-certify! You’re almost there, but there are a few more steps to complete to get your Washington, D.C., medical marijuana card. Let’s dive in!

  • Before You Start: What You’ll Need
    • A healthcare practitioner recommendation with a date of issuance within two years of the application submission date or self-certification for individuals 21 and older.
    • A 2″ x 2″ current face photo
    • Proof of identity
    • Proof(s) of residency (two if applying with an out-of-state driver’s license or ID card)
  • Complete Application: Complete the district application on the Alcoholic Beverage and Cannabis Administration website using the link from your email.
  • Pay the Fee: Pay the $100 fee and submit the state application online.
  • Start Shopping: You will receive a digital approval letter and a physical card from the state in 10-14 business days.
How to Renew Your Card

Need to renew your Washington, D.C., medical marijuana card? For patients 21 and older, seeing a healthcare provider is entirely optional. Here’s everything you need to know.

Steps to Renew Your Card

  1. If you want to speak to a healthcare provider, sign in or register as a renewal patient here if you’re new to Leafwell.
  2. Speak to a district-licensed physician online via telemedicine (or decide to self-certify).
  3. Once approved, complete the patient renewal application following the prompts and upload your certificate from Leafwell (if applicable).
  4. Pay the $100 district fee and submit your application online.
  5. You will receive a digital approval letter and a physical card within 10-14 business days.
Legal Topics

Below, you’ll find a few need-to-know medical marijuana laws enforced in Washington, D.C. Check out our Washington, D.C., law page for more in-depth coverage of the district’s rules.

  • Patients cannot consume cannabis in public places.
  • Patients cannot drive or operate other motor vehicles under the influence of cannabis.
  • Recreational cannabis sales are currently illegal.
  • Cannabis cultivation is legal for anyone 21 or older, but individuals may not have more than three mature plants at a given time.
Caregivers

Washington, D.C., defines a caregiver as a person designated by a qualifying medical cannabis patient as someone authorized to possess, obtain from a dispensary, dispense, and assist in administering medical cannabis.

Caregivers must be 18 years or older, registered as the qualifying patient’s caregiver, and may only serve one patient at a time. Dispensary or cultivation center workers who administer medical cannabis are not eligible to serve as caregivers.

Caregivers may purchase up to eight ounces of usable marijuana in a 30-day period.

To apply as a caregiver, you must submit a Medical Cannabis Caregiver Application, undergo a criminal background check, and pay the district a $100 nonrefundable application fee. Caregiver cards are valid for up to two years.

Reciprocity

Washington, D.C., allows patients with medical marijuana cards issued by any state to purchase medical cannabis from district-licensed dispensaries legally.

Non-D.C. residents, including international visitors, may register for temporary patient registration or use their valid patient registration from a U.S. state or territory that has been extended reciprocity.

The following is a list of states and territories that recognize out-of-state medical marijuana cards:

*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:

FAQs

How much does a Washington DC Medical Marijuana certificate and card cost?

An online consultation for a Washington, D.C. medical marijuana card costs $99 and includes a 2-year certification. You’ll only be charged if approved. Plus, now you can sign up with a friend and each save 10% on your consultation.

Those 21 and older may self-certify and do not need to meet with a provider.

Here’s an overview of the fees:

  • $99 Initial certificate from Leafwell
  • $99 Renewal certificate from Leafwell
  • $100 State application fee* (currently waived)
    ($25 reduced fee for Medicaid, DC Alliance, or proof of gross income for income verification)

*State fees are not included with Leafwell fees and are paid directly to the state.

What medical conditions qualify for a Medical Marijuana Card in Washington DC?

There are no qualifying conditions in Washington D.C. Instead, it is up to the certifying healthcare provider to have a conversation with their patient and decide if medical cannabis is the right option for the individual person.

People over 21 can ‘self-certify’ and do not need to see a physician.

What do I need to know about applying for my Medical Cannabis Card in Washington DC online?

Washington, D.C. residents who are 21 and older may self-certify instead of being certified by a healthcare provider. If you prefer speaking with a licensed healthcare provider for a Washington, D.C. medical marijuana card, the process is simple with Leafwell:

  1. Register with Leafwell and speak to a healthcare provider licensed in Washington, D.C. online. Consultations cost $99 and you’ll only be charged if approved.
  2. Complete the state patient application. If self-certifying, simply select “Self-Certification” under “Certification Type”. If entering a recommendation number, select “Recommendation”.
  3. Pay and submit any state application fees.
  4. You will receive both a digital approval letter and a physical card from the state in 10-14 business days.
How old do I have to be to apply for a Medical Marijuana Card in Washington DC?
Can I be/have a caregiver for a medical marijuana patient in Washington DC?

Yes, medical marijuana patients in Washington DC can have a caregiver. Caregivers will complete their own application.

Caregiver Requirements:

  • Must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Registered as the qualifying patient’s caregiver.
  • Caregivers can serve only one qualifying patient at a time.
  • DC residents and non-residents are both eligible to register in the District’s medical cannabis program as a caregiver. Caregiver applicants must be affiliated with a current patient to be approved.
    • Only DC residents may register in the program as a patient.
  • A criminal background check report must be submitted with the caregiver application (background check information can be found on the application).
  • Individuals who administer medical cannabis at a retailer or cultivation center are not eligible.

Here’s how to apply as a caregiver:

  1. Individuals must submit a Medical Cannabis Caregiver Application with all required documentation and payment. Currently, an online application is not available for this application type.
    1. Mail or in-person: ABRA, Medical Cannabis Program, 2000 14th Street, Suite 102A, Washington, DC 20009
    2. Email: medicalcannabis@dc.gov
  2. Caregiver registrations are valid for two years from the date of issuance. An annual fee* applies. See the Fee and Renewal Schedule.

*The fee is waived through December 7, 2023.

State Resources:

How do I apply for the state program in Washington DC?

If you’ve been approved by a Leafwell healthcare provider, the next step is to apply to the Washington DC Program via Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration, or ABRA. You can also self-certify if you are a resident of Washington, D.C. and 21 years of age or older.

DC residents who are at least 21 years of age may self-certify on their patient application that they will use cannabis purchased from a licensed dispensary for medical purposes in lieu of securing a recommendation from their healthcare provider.

-SSN is now required for patients registering for the state:

DC residents must submit an Adult or Minor Patient Application. Required items for the Adult Application include:

  1. Social Security Number or a copy of a sworn affidavit stating lack of one.
  2. One (1) current face photo, 2″x2″.
  3. One (1) copy of their DC DMV REAL ID* OR
    – One (1) proof of DC residency and
    – One (1) copy of government-issued photo ID
  4. A healthcare practitioner recommendation dated within two (2) years of the application submission date if not self-certifying. Applicants 21 years of age may self-certify in lieu of providing a recommendation.

Reciprocity for VA residents: * Virginia patients may present a valid Virginia-issued registration or an expired Virginia-issued registration with a Virginia healthcare provider-issued recommendation dated within one calendar year of the purchase date effective July 1, 2022.

Verified Source: https://abra.dc.gov/node/1531271

You may still choose to get a physician’s recommendation if you so wish, e.g. for a minor, those who are aged 18 to 20 or those seeking advice from a healthcare worker.

Note – these instructions are for both new patients and renewals.

  • If you are a new patient, select ‘Initial’ under ‘Application Type’
  • If you are renewing your card, select ‘Renewal’ under ‘Application Type’.

Before you start your application, gather the following information and documents: 

  • Recommendation (expires 90 days after issuance)
  • Social Security Number
  • 2x Photos (a selfie works – head and shoulders, taken against a plain, light color wall)
  • One (1) copy of government-issued photo identification (driver’s license, passport or state ID)
  • One (1) proof of DC residency (driver’s license, utility bill, voter’s registration card, lease/deed/tax bill)
    • Note that your REAL ID can serve as your government ID and proof of residency
  • Reduced fee applicants only: If you are low income, you are eligible for a lower fee ($25), and you can prove this using one of the following documentation: medicaid card, food stamp card, tax return, SNAP, unemployment status

Here’s what to do once you’ve been approved by a Leafwell healthcare professional.

  1. Obtain your recommendation from your Leafwell.co account. We will email it to you. You will use the recommendation number on your certificate from your Leafwell healthcare provider to apply. Keep it as a reference until you receive your “card”. It is worth noting that those aged 21 or over who are residents of Washington, D.C. can now self-certify for medicinal cannabis and do not need a physician’s approval. The instructions still stay the same, however, whether or not you choose to get medical cannabis approval from a physician.
  2. Use the link in your approval email to begin the application
    Using the correct link is important. Failure to use the correct portal will cause your application to be rejected without further notice.https://abra.dc.gov/page/medical-cannabis-patients provides all five (5) portals. Use the portal based on your healthcare professional’s specialization.Alternatively, here are all the healthcare providers currently certifying with Leafwell. Match the name on your recommendation and click below to reach the correct portal:
    1. Lisa M. Boynes-Sindass
    2. Maria Mainolfi 
    3. Karina Dahlerus
    4. Lewis Jassey
  1. Complete the application on ABRA – All individuals must submit a Medical Cannabis Patient Application (adult or minor version) with all required documentation.
    1. Fill out all required information and upload relevant documents.
    2. Optional – if you are registering a caregiver, upload this form to the application.
    3. Select intended fee payment option << please note currently there is no patient fee but this is subject to change
    4. Click submit
    5. Upon submission, you will be sent a confirmation of receipt email.
    6. If your application is given initial approval, you will be sent a second email detailing payment options within three (3) business days. (If you don’t receive an email, check your spam/junk folder)
      1. To ensure prompt receipt, please add the state’s email address (medicalcannabis@dc.gov) to your safe senders list, address book, or contact list*Please note incomplete applications cannot be saved and returned to later.
        ** If you did not receive your link, you can click here and select the correct form
  2. Receive both a digital approval letter and physical card via mail within 10-14 business days.
    1. Your certificate will be valid for one year from the date of issue.

Other FAQS

Can I use an expired driver’s license?

Yes, if the driver’s license expired after February 28, 2020 until September 9, 2021.

What form of payment can I use?

  1. Credit and Debit cards (recommended)
  2. Check or money order (must select this option on the application and your application will require more  time to process)

Can I submit a paper application?

Yes, but this process can take 4-6 weeks.

Why is it important to use the URL provided on the recommendation?

Your application is submitted under a specific portals based on the healthcare professional’s specialization (Physician, Advanced Practice Registered Nurse/Nurse Practitioner, Dentist, Physician  Assistant, Naturopathic Physician). The correct URL will be a clickable button in your approval email from Leafwell.

What will happen if I use/submit my application to the incorrect application portal?

Your application will be rejected and without further notice to the patient.

Why do I need to apply each year?

Patient circumstances may have changed, such as proof of income or address.

When do I pay?

ABRA will email you a payment link in three (3) business days. Note that currently these fees are waived.

What government agency handles the medical cannabis program?

ABRA.gov – Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration

How much is the card?

Note that currently these fees are waived but usually the costs are as below:

$100 – regular payment

$25 – low-income patients (if approved by ABRA) Upload proof on the application; failure to do so will  result in a $100 card fee.

$100 – replacement fee

$100 – caregiver’s card

I can’t find my payment link.

Look in your spam or junk folders. If you can’t find the email, you must make a request to ABRA to resend.