Probably once a week, I get asked if a California Medical Marijuana Card makes any difference in Utah. Up until last year, I had to say no. Fortunately, Utah’s new Medical Cannabis Act does contain some reciprocity for med cards from out of state, but there are some important caveats to keep in mind:
- You cannot be a Utah resident (or you have to have been a resident for 45 days or less.
- The out-of-state medical card has to be current and valid.
- You have to have been diagnosed with a “qualifying condition,” as that term is defined under Utah law.
- You have to have your cannabis in a “medicinal dosage form” as that term is defined under Utah law.
- You can’t have more than 113 grams of unprocessed flower, or processed cannabis product that contains more than 20mg of total THC.
- You can’t smoke marijuana in Utah, so a pipe or bong is still illegal.
As always, it’s better not to get to the point where you’re arguing about this stuff in Court, so if you’re pulled over for a traffic offense while passing through, and you’re asked whether you have any drugs in the car, you might not want to answer (and you don’t have to). It’s never a great idea to lie to a police officer, but it’s entirely within your rights to say “you know, I feel this situation has gone far beyond the reason you stopped me [for speeding], and I don’t feel comfortable answering any more questions without my attorney present.” For more information about handling an encounter with the cops on the side of the road, see my post: The “Consensual” Police Encounter.