**Can You Smoke Weed in Public in Nevada? **
Yes. Marijuana is legal for recreational and medical use in Nevada. The Cannabis Compliance Board (CCB) regulates the recreational and adult use of marijuana. The possession, purchase, and use of recreational marijuana became legal on January 1, 2017, after Nevada voters voted in favor of the Initiative to Regulate and Tax Marijuana in 2016. Adults 21 and older can legally possess up to ⅛ of an ounce of concentrated marijuana or up to 1 ounce of marijuana. Consumers can buy recreational marijuana legally only from state-licensed retail stores.
A medical marijuana cardholder registered with the Division of Public and Behavioral Health (DPBH) with qualifying medical conditions can legally possess up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana. Medical marijuana patients are exempted from the 10% sales tax that adult marijuana users pay.
Federally, marijuana is a Schedule 1 Drug under the Controlled Substance Act of 1970 and remains illegal. Hence, the possession, distribution, trafficking, or sale of marijuana is prohibited on any federal property in Nevada. It is also illegal to use marijuana in public or in a motor vehicle.
Medical and recreational marijuana is legal in Nevada. Medical marijuana became legal in Nevada in 2000. Individuals with certain medical conditions, such as anxiety, cancer, glaucoma, HIV, seizures, autism, and chronic pain may possess up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana every 14 days. They can also cultivate up to 12 marijuana plants. However, marijuana cultivation is prohibited for patients living within 25 miles of a licensed dispensary. Qualifying patients must register with the DPBH and obtain a medical marijuana card. Medical marijuana approved by the DPBH includes concentrates, topicals, edibles, and flowers.
In November 2016, 55% of Nevadans voted in favor of Question 2, which sought to legalize, regulate and tax recreational marijuana for persons aged 21 or older. Adults may possess a limited amount of marijuana and can only purchase the same from state-approved retail stores. Recreational cannabis became legal in Nevada on January 1, 2017 and the first licensed sale occurred in the state on July 1, 2017. Adults could only buy and possess up to 1 oz. of cannabis flower and one-eighth of an ounce of cannabis concentrate. However, in 2023, Governor Joe Lombardo signed Senate Bill 277 to raise these limits for adult-use cannabis. The new limits, expected to take effect on January 1, 2024, are 2.5 ounces of cannabis flower and one-quarter of an ounce of concentrate.
In June 2021, Governor Steve Sisilak signed Assembly Bill 341 into law, permitting the licensing and regulation of cannabis consumption lounges. The law approves the purchase and public consumption of marijuana at designated marijuana lounges. In 2022, the CCB approved regulations for the licensing and operations of marijuana consumption lounges and issued the first cannabis consumption license in December 2022. The first marijuana consumption lounge in Nevada became operational in 2023.
The timeline for Nevads’s cannabis legislations is as follows:
Introduced and passed in the House, the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act (MORE) aims to decriminalize marijuana and remove it from the list of Schedule 1 Drugs. It seeks to eliminate criminal penalties for the possession, manufacture, and distribution of marijuana. Additionally, the bill seeks to make the following changes:
Yes. Cannabis is legal for recreational and medical use in Nevada. Individuals aged 21 or older can legally buy and use 2.5 ounces of cannabis flower for recreational use from January 1, 2024. Nevada residents aged 18 or older who are registered cannabis patients may have up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana for medical use. Minors older than 10 may also obtain and use medical marijuana through designated primary caregivers.
The migration of Mexicans into the U.S. due to the Mexican Revolution in 1910 heightened fears about marijuana. States began to make marijuana illegal, with Nevada outlawing marijuana in 1917. By the 1930s, the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, led by Harry Anslinger, sought a federal ban on the drug, and by 1937, the Marihuana Tax Act was born. The Act made marijuana illegal throughout the U.S. However, by the late ’70s, most states began relaxing their marijuana laws.
Notwithstanding the legality of marijuana in Nevada, there are some instances where individuals may not consume marijuana in in the state. For instance, it is illegal for minors under the age of 21 to use cannabis recreationally. Public consumption of marijuana is also unlawful in Nevada.
In Nevada, only licensed retail stores may sell cannabis to qualified persons. Individuals aged 21 or older may purchase marijuana for recreational use from any licensed marijuana dispensary across Nevada. Persons, aged at least 18, and living with qualifying medical conditions may purchase medical marijuana after obtaining their medical marijuana cards from the DPBH.
All marijuana-derived products are legal for sale in Nevada. Residents may purchase prerolls, CBD, topicals, flowers, extracts, and edibles for recreational and medical use. However, before a sale transaction is completed, the dispensary must request to see a customer’s valid government-issued ID to verify their age.
In Nevasa, it is legal for persons 21 and older to possess up to an ounce of marijuana. However, possession of marijuana above the legal limit is subject to criminal penalties under state law as follows.
In Nevada, only licensed dispensaries can sell marijuana. Therefore, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute is a felony, treated as the illegal sale of marijuana. Possession with intent to distribute attracts the following penalties:
The sale of marijuana outside a licensed dispensary in Nevada is a felony crime. The penalties for the unlawful sale of marijuana are:
Persons aged 21 or older can legally cultivate up to 6 plants of marijuana at home and 12 plants per household if they live more than 25 miles from a marijuana dispensary. Cultivation of marijuana above the legal limit is a felony and attracts the following penalties:
Only licensed marijuana dispensaries are authorized to sell marijuana paraphernalia to adults in Nevada. Persons who sell, deliver, possess, or manufacture marijuana paraphernalia commit a felony. The penalty is incarceration for 1 - 4 years and a fine not exceeding $5,000.
Marijuana consumption on a federal property, building, or national park within Nevada is an offense. The penalty for the public consumption of marijuana is a $600 fine.
Driving under the influence of marijuana in Nevada is illegal. The legal implications for marijuana DUI offenses in the state include the following:
Other penalties imposed on marijuana DUI offenders in Nevada include:
In Nevada, any property used or intended for illegal use in the manufacturing, dispensing, or distribution of marijuana is subject to forfeiture upon conviction. Also, all assets used or planned for use in the conveyance and transportation of marijuana for the illegal sales of marijuana are subject to confiscation on conviction.
An individual who violates Nevada marijuana laws can remedy the situation by employing the services of an attorney.
Nevada outlawed marijuana in 1917, making marijuana illegal to possess without a prescription. By 1923, the state recommended penalties for the possession of marijuana. In 1965, Nevada amended its existing laws to include penalties for the planting, cultivation, and processing of marijuana through Assembly Bill 519. In 1975 and 1977, Assembly Bill 285 and 253 attempted to reduce the penalties for marijuana possession, but both bills were unsuccessful.
In 1979, Senate Bill 471 established a committee to research the therapeutic benefits of marijuana on patients with cancer and glaucoma. By the 1980s, Nevada authorized several marijuana laws imposing penalties and taxes on illegal marijuana. For instance, Senate Bill 7 provided penalties for the trafficking of marijuana. Assembly Bill 628 imposed civil penalties for the unlawful possession and sale of marijuana, and Senate Bill 144, signed into law in '87, enforced taxation for marijuana sold illegally.
However, in the 1998 and 2000 elections, 59% and 65% of Nevadans voted to legalize marijuana for medical use. The constitutional amendment permitted persons evaluated by a physician and eligible to participate in the program to obtain a medical marijuana card to access up to 2.5 ounces of cannabis. The state expanded the medical marijuana program in 2013 through Senate Bill 374.
Nevada attempted to legalize marijuana for recreational use through Initiative Petition 3 in 2005. However, in 2016, Nevadans voted in favor of question 2 on the ballot, legalizing recreational marijuana, and by January 1st, 2017, marijuana became legal to purchase, possess, and consume by persons 21 and older. In 2021, Assembly Bill 341 was passed into law, permitting the public consumption of marijuana at licensed marijuana consumption lounges.
Recreational and medical marijuana is legal in Nevada. However, the state still has restrictions on marijuana use, procurement, possession, and cultivation. They include: