Marijuana Law in Colorado: What you need to know

Since the passing of amendment 64 in 2012, adults 21 and over can legally purchase and possess marijuana in the state of Colorado. As long as you are 21 years or older and have a government issued ID, you can purchase marijuana in a variety of forms. There is a limit to how much you can purchase at any given time, however. Since June of 2016, both Colorado residents as well as tourists can purchase up to 28 grams in a single transaction. Before you plan your next trip to Colorado or your local dispensary, there are a few key laws that everyone should be aware of before partaking:

  • Amendment 64 does NOT permit the consumption of marijuana openly and publicly. You can be cited the same way for drinking in public.
  • Again, you must be 21 years or older to buy, possess or use retail marijuana and it is illegal to give or sell retail marijuana to minors.
  • Retail marijuana is intended for PRIVATE, PERSONAL use. Such use is only legal in certain locations that are not open to the public. The places where it is illegal to consume marijuana include transportation facilities, schools, amusement/sporting/music venues, parks, playgrounds, sidewalks and roads, and outdoor/rooftop cafés.
  • You cannot travel through the airport with marijuana or mail marijuana. DIA prohibits possession, use, display, and transfer of all marijuana on its property. Mailing marijuana could result in both the sender and receiver facing fines and possible jail time.
  • Your right to possess marijuana in Colorado does NOT apply when visiting national parks, monuments, or other federal properties such as courthouses. Please be aware that many ski areas are located on federal land as well.
  • Marijuana may be carried in your car, but it cannot be in an open container and cannot cross state boundaries. It is illegal to consume marijuana in a motor vehicle and it is illegal to drive under the influence of marijuana.

In Colorado, it is illegal to drive under the influence of marijuana, and if caught, could result in a DUI, just like alcohol. Anyone driving that is found to have 5 nanograms or more of THC per milliliter in whole blood while operating a vehicle can be arrested for DUI. While there is no roadside sobriety test currently, Colorado State Patrol is actively exploring options for marijuana DUI devices as part of a three-year pilot program. If successful, a cheek swab could give officers an electronic readout, gauging the presence of narcotics including marijuana in a matter of minutes. Evaluations of the device’s effectiveness will continue over the next couple of years.

If you or a loved one is involved in an accident or injured by someone who is driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, call a representative at Franklin D. Azar & Associates today. We will work hard to get you the compensation you deserve.