In 2018, the Canadian government decided to overturn the outdated Opium and Narcotic Drug act of 1920 and made cannabis legal in Canada for recreational purposes. This has generated a lot of press around the world and in the country. It also came with a few questions about how new laws would be implemented. Some people may assume that it became a free-for-all for cannabis and cannabis-related products, but things are a bit more complicated than that. Here are four things everyone should know about the legalization of marijuana in Canada.
Laws Greatly Differ Between Provinces
While Canada’s cannabis act made cannabis legal at the federal level, the provinces still choose how they implement these laws. This can affect things such as public consumption and the possession of plants.
For instance, provinces like Alberta allowed people to grow up to four plants in their house while provinces like Quebec outlawed it completely at first. While this has been overturned by a court and people are now allowed to grow plants in Quebec, this is still something you need to keep an eye on. The government is also looking at ways that it can reduce the number of plants that can be grown to prevent some of them from entering the black market.
Legal Limits Can be Tough to Decipher
The law says that you can carry up to 30g of cannabis with no fear of legal repercussions. If you have anywhere between 31g and 50g, you will be getting a ticket based on the amount of cannabis you had on you.
The issue, however, is that this only applies to dry cannabis. Since it is much denser than fresh cannabis, you are allowed to hold up to 5 times the legal amount if the cannabis is fresh. On the other hand, you can only have one-fourth of the legal limit if you’re carrying a concentrate. This is why it’s very important that you know what the limits are and know how much you are carrying at all times.
Cannabis is not Fully Decriminalized
While you will not be arrested for holding small quantities of cannabis or growing at home, that doesn’t mean that all activities surrounding cannabis are now legal. Things like possession of marijuana will still get you in trouble if you have more than the legal limit. You could get up to 5 years in jail depending on the quantity. Things like selling cannabis, especially to minors, could also land you in jail.
You Can’t Smoke In Public Everywhere
You should also know that laws aren’t the same everywhere when it comes to the public consumption of cannabis. Provinces like Quebec prohibit it completely and you can only consume cannabis at home. While cannabis consumption is treated like tobacco in most provinces including Ontario, you could still get a ticket in Quebec if a police officer catches you. While this is not aggressively enforced, this is still something you should be on the lookout for if you’re ever in the province.
If you still didn’t fully understand cannabis laws in Canada, we hope we were able to help. We suggest you look into it in detail and know everything there is to know about the legislation before buying or consuming cannabis in the country.