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The Law On Marijuana Possession In Florida: A Guide For 2023


The marijuana (cannabis) laws in the United States have been in a state of flux over the last decade. If you are unsure of what you are—and are not—allowed to do, you are not alone. As reported by MJBizDaily, approximately half of states have legalized the recreational use of marijuana. Even more states have legalized the medical use of marijuana.

That being said, Florida has not legalized recreational marijuana use. Further, marijuana possession is still prohibited at the federal level. At The Baez Law Firm, we are committed to protecting our clients. In this article, our Orlando drug crimes defense attorney provides a comprehensive guide to the law on marijuana possession in Florida for 2023. 

An Overview of Florida’s Marijuana Possession Laws 

Although many states have legalized the recreational use of marijuana, it is not permitted in Florida. Here is what you need to know about the status of the state’s cannabis laws for 2023:

  • Recreational: Prohibited at the state level. Although there are continued pushes for reform, recreational marijuana possession is a crime under Florida law.
  • Medical: Florida does allow for medical marijuana. Qualified patients must obtain a state-issued medical marijuana identification card. 

It is important to note that local law is also relevant. Some municipalities in Florida have effectively “decriminalized” the possession of small amounts of marijuana. For example, Orlando has a city ordinance that makes marijuana possession (20 grams or less) a ticketable offense by city police officers instead of an arrestable offense.

What are the Criminal Penalties for Marijuana Possession in Florida? 

In Florida, the criminal penalties for marijuana possession vary based on several key factors—with the most important being the amount. Here is an overview of the potential penalties:

  • 20 Grams or Less: Misdemeanor offense carrying maximum penalty of one year in jail.
  • 20 Grams to 25 Pounds: Felony offense carrying a maximum penalty of five years in prison.
  • Larger Amounts: Serious felony offense that could lead to as much as 3 to 30 years in prison based on a possession with intent to distribute charge. 

Marijuana Possession is Still Prohibited Under Federal Law 

Residents of Florida and other states should know that marijuana possession is still illegal under federal law. Even though some states have legalized marijuana for recreational or medicinal use, it is still considered a controlled substance under federal law. A person who is authorized to possess and consume medical marijuana in Florida should never possess the substance on federal property, such as in a federal courthouse or in a federal national park. 

Contact Our Orlando, FL Drug Crimes Defense Attorney for Immediate Legal Help

At The Baez Law Firm, our Orlando drug crimes defense lawyer has the skills, experience, and legal expertise to handle the full range of possession cases, including marijuana possession. If you or your family member was charged with any drug possession crime, we are ready to help. Contact our criminal defense law firm for a fully confidential, no commitment consultation. Our attorneys handle drug possession cases in Orlando, Orange County, and throughout Central Florida.



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