Virginia residents should be aware that their state imposes harsh marijuana laws that could result in hefty fines or even incarceration. The only permitted use of the drug is medical CBD for intractable epilepsy, but any other use is a crime.
Virginia prohibits marijuana for any use, except a non-intoxicating form of the drug allowed for limited medical purposes. All other possession, sale, manufacture, and trafficking is treated as a crime. Felony weight limits are among the lowest in the nation, and penalties for serious offenses are especially harsh, with life imprisonment possible.
It is legal in Virginia to possess non-intoxicating CBD preparations for restricted medical use. Possession of less than half an ounce of cannabis for any other purpose is a misdemeanor. The maximum penalty on a first conviction is 30 days in jail and $500 in fines, while the maximum on a subsequent offense is one year in jail and $2,500.
Possession of larger amounts is automatically treated as possession with intent to distribute, a felony trafficking offense.
Sale, Manufacture, and Trafficking
Any sale of marijuana is a felony. If the weight is between half an ounce and five pounds, there is a mandatory minimum sentence of one year in jail, a maximum of 10 years in prison, and a top fine of $2,500.
If the amount is between five pounds and 100 kilograms, the penalty increases to at least five years in prison, as many as 30, and up to $1,000. If the weight is greater than 100 kilograms, a penalty of 20 years to life in prison applies, in addition to a maximum fine of $100,000.
Selling cannabis to a minor who is at least three years younger than the seller carries a minimum penalty of two years in prison, a maximum of 50 years, and up to $100,000 in fines. The penalty for sale within 1,000 feet of a school or school bus stop is at least one year in jail, as many as five years in prison, and a top fine of $100,000.
Manufacturing cannabis is also a felony and is subject to a minimum of five years in prison, a maximum of 30 years, and a fine of up to $10,000. Transporting more than five pounds into the state is likewise a felony and is punishable by between five and 40 years in prison and $1 million in fines.
Hash and Concentrates
Virginia applies especially harsh penalties to hashish, hash oil, and other cannabis concentrates. Any concentrate offense is treated as a felony.
Possession is punishable by between one year in jail and 10 years in prison, plus fines of up to $2,500. Making, selling, gifting, distributing, or possessing marijuana with intent to distribute it carries a penalty of five to 40 years in prison and $500,000 in fines.
Transporting more than one ounce of hash oil into Virginia also carries a prison term of five to 40 years, but the maximum fine is $1 million. Penalties increase with subsequent offenses.
Virginia bans marijuana paraphernalia unless it is intended, marketed, and used only for legal purposes. Paraphernalia in the state includes any items used in the cultivation, harvesting, processing, testing, analysis, storage, inhaling, ingesting, or otherwise introducing marijuana to the body.
Sale and distribution. While simple possession is not criminalized, sale or possession with intent to sell is a misdemeanor with a top penalty of one year in jail and $2,500 in fines.
Sale to a minor. Sale of paraphernalia to a minor at least three years younger than the seller is a class 6 felony and carries a maximum of one year in jail and $2,500.
It is a felony to maintain a fortified drug house, with a penalty of between one year in jail and 10 years in prison.
Marijuana convictions will result in suspension of driving privileges for six months.
Virginia passed CBD legislation which prevents patients from being prosecuted for the medicinal use of CBD oil.
Qualifying conditions – Intractable epilepsy, and any other diagnosed condition.
Patient possession limits – Cannabis extracts containing no less than 15 percent CBD and no more than five percent THC are allowed, or a dilution of resin from a cannabis plant containing at least 50 mg of CBD per ml and no more than five percent THC or THC-A.
The possession of such products is not legal under state law, but is eligible for an affirmative defense from criminal prosecution. Read the full law here
Home cultivation – No
State-licensed dispensaries – No
Caregivers – No
|Less than 1/2 oz (first offense)||Misdemeanor||30 days||$ 500|
|Less than 1/2 oz (subsequent offense)||Misdemeanor||1 year||$ 2,500|
|1/2 oz – 5 lbs||Felony||1* – 10 years||$ 2,500|
|5 lbs – 100 kg||Felony||5* – 30 years||$ 1,000|
|More than 100 kg||Felony||20 years* – life||$ 100,000|
|To a minor who is at least 3 years younger||Felony||2* – 50 years||$ 100,000|
|Within 1000 ft of a school or school bus stop||Felony||1* – 5 years||$ 100,000|
|Manufacture of marijuana||Felony||5* – 30 years||$ 10,000|
|Transporting more than 5 lbs into the state||Felony||5* – 40 years||$ 1,000,000|
|Includes possession with intent to distribute|
|* Mandatory minimum sentence|
Hash & Concentrates
|Possessing hashish oil||Felony||1 – 10 years||$ 2,500|
|Manufacturing, selling, giving, distributing, or possessing with intent||Felony||5 – 40 years||$ 500,000|
|Bringing more than 1 oz of hashish oil into the state||Felony||5 – 40 years||$ 1,000,000|
|Subsequent offenses carry greater penalties|
|Sale or possession with intent to sell paraphernalia||Misdemeanor||1 year||$ 2,500|
|To a minor who is at least 3 years younger||Felony||1 year||$ 2,500|
Civil Asset Forfeiture
|Vehicles and other assets can be seized in a civil proceeding, regardless of whether criminal charges are brought.|
|Maintaining a fortified drug house||Felony||1* – 10 years||N/A|
|A convicted person shall be deprived of driving privileges for 6 months.|
|* Mandatory minimum sentence|