California Marijuana Laws

When it comes to cannabis legislation, California is one of the progressive states in the United States. It was the first state in the U.S. to legalize medical marijuana 20 years ago and just recently voters approved a measure to legalize marijuana for recreational use.

Recreational Marijuana in California

Voters passed Proposition 64 to legalize recreational marijuana under state law in November 2016. Under Proposition 64, adults aged 21 years and older can legally possess and use up to 28.5 grams (roughly 1 ounce) of marijuana and 8 grams of concentrated marijuana for recreational purposes. Adults are also allowed to cultivate up to six plants. Smoking is permitted in a private home, but remains illegal to use while driving a vehicle or when in public places.

Medical Marijuana in California

Ballot Proposition 215 received 56% ‘yes’ votes in November 1996, making California the very first state to legalize medical marijuana. Cannabis for medical purposes is legal for any patients with either a written or oral recommendation from a physician stating that they will benefit from medical marijuana. Medical marijuana cards can be acquired through the California Department of Public Health, but are not required to purchase medical cannabis from a dispensary.

Patients can possess up to 8 ounces of marijuana for any of the following conditions:

California also allows medical marijuana for any chronic or persistent medical symptoms.

Consumption of CBD from Hemp Oil in California

Hemp-derived CBD products are legal under Federal Law in the United States; however, individual state laws are dynamic and fluid. Individual states may enact their own laws governing hemp-derived CBD.

Cultivation of Cannabis in California

Adults 21 and older can cultivate up to 6 plants for recreational purposes, under Proposition 64. California’s medical marijuana law allows qualified patients and their primary caregivers to cultivate 6 mature of 12 immature plants for medicinal reasons.


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