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Does Florida Accept Out-of-State Medical Cards?

Sep, 2021
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It is no news that marijuana has gained widespread acceptance in America, even though it faces significant legal opposition because it is still federally illegal. Regardless of the federal status, medical marijuana is legal in 37 states, including Florida, and recreational marijuana is legal in 18 states.

If you’re traveling to Florida, you may be thinking, “Does Florida accept out-of-state medical cards?” Well, your question is valid, and we have the answer you need. On the other hand, if you are an MMJ patient resident of Florida and are curious to know whether you can use your Florida MMJ card in other states, we’ve also got all the information for you.

Read on to find out all about marijuana reciprocity in the Sunshine State. 

does florida accept out of state medical cards

A Quick Overview of Florida Marijuana Laws

Before we answer your questions, let’s breeze through Florida marijuana laws.

Marijuana is legal only for medical purposes in Florida. The state first legalized marijuana for medical purposes on June 26, 2014, when Gov. Rick Scott signed the Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act. The Act allowed patients suffering from cancer, epilepsy, muscle spasms, or chronic seizures to use low-THC cannabis products recommended by a qualified doctor. 

Later in 2016, the Right to Try Act expanded the state’s medical marijuana program and allowed the prescription of full-strength marijuana to patients with a terminal illness. 

In 2017, Gov. Rick Scott signed Senate Bill 8A into law which established guidelines for Amendment 2. This Amendment also expanded the qualifying conditions, which now include the following qualifying conditions:

Marijuana is only “medical” in Florida if you purchase it from a licensed medical marijuana treatment center. Always keep this in mind if you want to stay on the right side of the law.  

LEARN MORE: Can You Get a Medical Card for Anxiety in Florida?

What is Marijuana Reciprocity?

Medical marijuana reciprocity means whether or not a state has reciprocal or equal laws for MMJ patients to legally purchase medical marijuana when they are not in the home state where their card was issued. Essentially, it’s the ability to acquire MMJ in another state with an MMJ program. 

While some states have reciprocity with other states, some require tourists to get a new MMJ card with validity only in the destination state. However, there are still different limitations on reciprocity, even in states where reciprocity exists. 

For instance, some states allow you to carry your out-of-state card and use medical marijuana while traveling without being charged, but that does not mean you can purchase marijuana from their dispensaries. 

The maze of marijuana laws in each state means you have to be aware of the dos and don’ts of medical marijuana in other states before you visit or travel there. You could face a criminal charge for marijuana possession, cultivation, and distribution if you’re not aware of medical marijuana regulations. 

Even with a valid medical marijuana card, you could be breaking the law if you:

  • Possess more medical marijuana than permitted
  • Grow more medical marijuana than permitted
  • Fail to register your medical marijuana card with the appropriate authority
  • Distribute or share medical marijuana with those who don’t have an MMJ card
  • Consume or distribute marijuana in prohibited areas
  • Possess an illegal type of marijuana

So, is Florida one of the states that accept out-of-state medical cards? 

Does Florida Accept Out-of-state Medical Cards?

No, Florida currently does not accept out-of-state medical marijuana cards. However, it does allow seasonal residents to apply for registry cards. 

Seasonal residents refer to citizens eligible to apply for a medical marijuana card in Florida if they have lived in the state for more than 30 days. You also have to be diagnosed with one of the qualifying medical conditions listed above. 

does florida accept out-of-state medical cards

To prove that you are a seasonal resident, some of the documents you can present include:

  • Current utility bill
  • Mail from a government agency from the past two months
  • A deed or mortgage to a property owned in Florida
  • A lease for a property you rent in Florida

For more information on getting medical cards in Florida, head over to our FAQ page. 

Can I Travel to Florida From Other States With MMJ?

In 2019, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) approved flying with medical marijuana and CBD oil approved by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA). However, they still do not allow you to travel with CBD containing THC as it is illegal under federal law. 

According to a TSA regional spokesman, Mark Howell, the TSA is not interested in finding your medical marijuana but instead focused on security and searching for dangerous things on the plane.

But…

On its official Instagram page, a 2019 post explains that, while TSA officers do not search for marijuana or other illegal drugs, if they do find it, federal law requires that they turn it and the owner over to local law enforcement. 

Their spokesperson has also commented that if you fly to a state where medical marijuana is legal, you can present your medical marijuana card. The law enforcement officials will usually give back your medical marijuana to you if they find everything is in accordance with the law. 

Therefore, we advise that you travel with your doctor’s recommendation so you can present it to law enforcement officials if they stop you. Since Florida allows medical marijuana, it means you can fly with medical marijuana to the state but remember that the law enforcement officials still get to exercise their discretion. The chance is yours to take!

When traveling by road, remember that marijuana in all forms is still a Schedule 1 controlled substance and transporting it across state lines is a federal crime. Just don’t do it.  

Which States Accept Out-of-State Medical Cards?

Even though Florida does not accept out-of-state medical cards, other states accept medical cards from other states because of their reciprocity laws.  These states include: 

Arizona

There is limited reciprocity for “visiting qualified patients” in a state like Arizona. To qualify as a visiting patient, you need to have your out-of-state medical marijuana card, live outside Arizona, or have only lived in Arizona for less than 30 days. Your qualifying condition must also be a condition that meets that of the Arizona medical card. With your out-of-state card, you can purchase up to 2.5 ounces of cannabis from a dispensary in Arizona every two weeks. 

Arkansas

You can legally purchase medical marijuana in Arkansas with your out-of-state card once you fill out the visiting patient form and provide proof of your out-of-state medical marijuana registration. 

You can buy up to 2.5 ounces from a dispensary in Arkansas every 14 days if the state approves you. 

Washington D.C

Washington D.C. allows out-of-state cards but only for certain states with medical marijuana programs. 

These states include Florida, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Washington. 

Maine

Maine allows medical marijuana patients from Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, and Washington DC. 

Patients from these states can purchase medical marijuana from any of Maine’s medical dispensaries with proper I.D. 

Michigan 

In Michigan, certified medical marijuana patients from out of state may purchase medical marijuana by presenting their valid patient I.D. However, dispensaries have the discretion to decide whether or not they will recognize an out-of-state medical marijuana card. 

does florida accept out of state medical cards

Montana

Montana has reciprocity with other states for medical marijuana use. However, Montana does not currently border any state that has authorized medical marijuana use. 

It means you cannot legally bring cannabis from any state to Montana without breaking federal laws of drug trafficking. 

New Hampshire

New Hampshire allows medical marijuana patients from out-of-state. However, they must have the same qualifying medical conditions permitted under the New Hampshire medical marijuana program. 

There is a limit on a possession which is up to 2 ounces of usable marijuana. However, they are not allowed to purchase from local dispensaries. 

New Jersey

New Jersey allows medical marijuana cards from all states with medical marijuana programs. Out-of-state patients can partake in the new jersey marijuana program for up to six months when they visit. Patients are allowed to possess up to 3 ounces of cannabis flower. 

Oklahoma

In Oklahoma, out-of-state cardholders can purchase medical marijuana from dispensaries after applying for a temporary license valid for 30 days and renewable. And if approved, they can possess up to 3 ounces on their person. 

Rhode Island

Rhode Island recognizes out-of-state medical patients as long as they bring their physical MMJ card and a government-issued I.D. card, they can access dispensaries in the state. They can also possess up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana.

Utah

Out-of-state patients in Utah must come under one of the qualifying conditions in the state to enjoy reciprocity.

New Mexico

New Mexico allows medical marijuana patients from out of state to register as reciprocal patients in the state’s medical marijuana program. 

To register as reciprocal patients, they must provide a government-issued photo I.D., a government-issued proof of authorization to purchase and use marijuana in another state, register electronically at a dispensary, and sign the electronic registration at the dispensary. A reciprocal patient card is valid for one year.

Note that there are some states where recreational marijuana is legal, and buying adult-use marijuana in these states is subject to their limit as a medical patient. However, you wouldn’t be able to access their medical dispensaries unless the states allow for out-of-state medical patients. 

Looking for a Medical Marijuana Doctor in Florida?  

Elevate Holistics is one of the leading telehealth services that offer you seamless and easy access to medical cannabis cards. At Elevate Holistics, we currently provide our services to eight states — but we’ve got some good news for you!

Our partners over at Heally do service Florida, and their process is as straightforward as ours. It's online, hassle-free, and easy. So, click here to book an appointment today!


Also, feel free to get caught up on the Florida-related content we have; this way, you’ll know exactly what to expect when getting your medical card in the Sunshine State. And, if you have any questions, you know we’ll be here to help

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