State Marijuana Laws
Twenty-six states and the District of Columbia currently have laws legalizing marijuana in some form. Three other states will soon join them after recently passing measures permitting use of medical marijuana.
Seven states and the District of Columbia have adopted more expansive laws legalizing marijuana for recreational use. Most recently, California, Massachusetts and Nevada all passed measures in November legalizing recreational marijuana. California’s Prop. 64 measure allows adults 21 and older to now possess up to one ounce of marijuana and grow up to six plants in their homes. Other tax and licensing provisions of the law will not take effect until January 2018. In Nevada, adults will be able to legally possess up to one ounce of marijuana beginning Jan. 1. A similar ballot measure in Massachusetts allows for possession of pot starting on Dec. 15.
Another recent ballot measure legalizing the recreational use of marijuana in Maine narrowly passed, but opponents are expected to request a recount.
A number of states have also decriminalized the possession of small amounts of marijuana. Other states have passed medical marijuana laws allowing for limited use of cannabis. Some medical marijuana laws are broader than others, with types of medical conditions that allow for treatment varying from state to state. Others states (not shown on the map below) have passed laws allowing residents to possess cannabis oil if they suffer from certain medical illnesses.
A new research report by a leading marijuana industry investment and research firm found legal cannabis sales jumped 17%, to $5.4 billion, in 2015 and they will grow by a stunning 25% this year to reach $6.7 billion in total U.S. sales.
ArcView Market Research will soon release its fourth edition of The State of Legal Marijuana Markets, predicting that the legal cannabis market will see $21.8 billion in total annual sales by 2020. For comparison, the National Football League saw roughly $12 billion in revenue last year.