A medical marijuana card (MMJ) or medical marijuana ID card (MMID) is a document that allows you to purchase medical marijuana in a state that allows its use. Different states have different requirements for obtaining a card. This post looks at Maryland, a state in which cannabis possession is still a mixed bag.
Please understand that what you read here applies only to Maryland. Each of the 33 states that allows medical marijuana does things according to its own law. Maryland cannabis law is different from the laws of every other state. If you are looking to get an MMJ in a state other than Maryland, consult the laws of that state.
Our starting point is the fact that obtaining an MMJ in Maryland is a multi-step process. There is a minimum of two steps. A third step is necessary if you want to add in the optional photo ID card. More on that later. As far as the two steps required at minimum, these are:
1. Registration – You must register with the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission (MMCC) in order to obtain medical marijuana. You can only do so online. Furthermore, you must wait to receive approval from the state before you can proceed with the second step. Approval will result in your notification along with a state-issued ID number.
2. Certification – The second step is to obtain a certificate from a state-approved physician. Getting a certificate means being evaluated by a doctor who will review your current health and your entire medical history. If the doctor agrees with your need for medical marijuana, he or she will give you a certificate.
If you’d like, you can enter certificate information in your online account with the state cannabis commission and then pay for a photo ID card. That ID card costs $50.
For some inexplicable reason, there are different validation periods for registration and certification. Medical marijuana laws in Maryland dictate a two-year validation for registration, yet the validation of your doctor’s certificate is only one year.
Purchasing Medical Marijuana
Maryland medical marijuana laws do not allow anyone to obtain medical marijuana based solely on registration with the state. In other words, registration does not allow you to legally buy medical marijuana. You must still obtain a certificate from an approved physician.
Likewise, you cannot purchase medical marijuana based solely on your doctor’s approval. You must have your certificate. Furthermore, you cannot obtain a certificate until you have received your state registration number. The long and short of it is that the state requires both registration and certification in order to purchase medical marijuana.
Application and Certification Fees
Applying for medical marijuana use in Maryland is free. However, you must pay your doctor’s standard office visit fee in order to obtain a certificate. That fee will vary from one doctor to the next. Note that doctors are free to waive that fee, but do not plan on it in your case.
Also note that you can use a service like Veriheal to connect with a Maryland cannabis doctor in your area. These sorts of organizations charge a flat fee for their services. Those fees vary, and some of them guarantee to not charge unless you are successful in obtaining a certificate.
You should now have a basic understanding of medical marijuana cards in the state of Maryland. Again, please understand that medical marijuana laws vary by state. Also understand that the laws in Maryland are subject to change. What applies today may not apply following the state’s next legislative session.