How to Obtain a Medical Marijuana Card in Alaska Frequently Asked Questions

How to Obtain a Medical Marijuana Card in Alaska FAQ


Are you a resident of Alaska who feels that medical marijuana could be helpful for your condition? Whether you have lived in the state your entire life or you are new to Alaska, you will want to know more about Alaska medical marijuana and the laws that govern it.

Below, you will learn more about some of the most commonly asked questions regarding the Alaska marijuana laws.

Alaska has always been about personal freedoms, and they first tried to legalize marijuana decades ago.  In 1975, Alaska became the second state in the country to decriminalize marijuana. The penalty for possession was just $100. It was recriminalized in 1998 and came with a $1,0000 fine for first-time offenders.

It took some time before true legalization came to fruition. Medical marijuana was made legal in the state in 1998.

Medical marijuana is helpful for a wide range of different sorts of health issues. Those who are suffering from chronic pain, cancer, epilepsy, and glaucoma, for example, may want to consider getting a medical marijuana card. This can allow them to buy high-quality weed from dispensaries. Of course, they could also learn to grow their own.

While medical marijuana was legalized more than two decades ago, it took until November of 2014 until the citizens voted for recreational marijuana. Yet, it still took until 2015 before it was legally on the books and until 2016 until recreational dispensaries opened.

Today, though, you are legally allowed to carry up to one ounce on your person at any time, as long as you are the right age. It is also legal to be gifted up to one ounce of marijuana.

Keep in mind the word gifted. This means that it must technically be given away and not bought or sold, as that would constitute the sale of a drug, which is something citizens can’t do. Only those who have the proper Alaska weed growing license are allowed to sell.

Just because you are allowed to have marijuana for recreational purposes doesn’t mean that it can be used just anywhere. Under the weed laws in Alaska, public consumption is not allowed. This means you can’t take the marijuana to a park, a playground, a restaurant, or any roadways.

Those who are caught smoking in a public location can be fined up to $100. If you are caught with marijuana in a national park, you could receive a federal citation. This is because marijuana is still illegal at the federal level. Always be careful of where you go when you have marijuana on you whether it’s medical or recreational.

When Did Medical Marijuana Alaska Pass?

Medical marijuana has been a staple in Alaska since 1998. For more than 24 years now, people have been able to get comfort from the use of this drug to help with a host of health problems.

Qualifying conditions for medical marijuana cards in Alaska include:

·  Cachexia

·  Cancer

·  Chronic Pain

·  Glaucoma

·  HIV or AIDS

·  Multiple Sclerosis

·  Nausea

·  Seizures

This list is not quite as long as what you will find in some other states. While this may have been a problem a decade or ago, since recreational laws were passed, it doesn’t matter nearly as much. Today, it is easier for people to get marijuana in Alaska through one of the recreational dispensaries. They could also grow it.

One of the questions that a lot of people have when it comes to weed in Alaska is whether it is possible to buy seeds. Fortunately, you can buy marijuana seeds without any worry.

You can find a host of options for buying seeds, so you can then try to germinate strains that you like. Of course, you will need to follow all of the laws in Alaska when it comes to cultivation, which will be discussed next.

One of the other nice things about Alaska is that if you are over the age of 21, you are allowed to grow your own marijuana whether you are using it recreationally or medically.

If there is one person in the home, you can have up to six plants, but only three of them can be flowering at one time. If there are two or more people in the home, you can have up to 12 plants. Again, only half of them can be flowering at one time.

As long as you are growing marijuana for personal use, you won’t have any problems with the law. Just make sure the plants are in a location that’s not visible to the public and that they are kept out of the reach of anyone who isn’t 21 or older.

How Old to Smoke Weed in Alaska?

The age to be able to smoke weed in Alaska will depend on whether you have a medical marijuana card or you are buying/growing for recreational use.

You can be 18 years old and apply for a medical card, as long as you have a qualifying condition. Parental consent is not required for patients who are at least 18 years old. However, if the patient is a minor, they will need to have a registered caregiver. This caregiver is required to be at least 21 years old. Additionally, they cannot have a criminal record. They also need to be a legal caregiver of the patient who is requiring assistance.

Who Provides Medical Marijuana in Alaska?

The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services is the government body in charge of the Marijuana Registry, as well as the application process. It’s through their site that you can apply as a patient and a caregiver.

Even though weed might be legal, it is still a good idea for those who qualify to get a medical marijuana card. It can be used before you are 21, and it often means that you are going to pay less for marijuana. You will have access to the medical marijuana dispensaries, as well.

Where to Buy Medical Marijuana Card in Alaska?

You don’t exactly buy a medical marijuana card. Instead, you will need to meet certain requirements. This will include having a diagnosis of one of the qualifying medical conditions mentioned above. This diagnosis needs to be from a doctor who has seen you in the office within the last 16 months.

After you have been diagnosed, you can take the recommendation from the doctor and show the Medical Marijuana Registry. From there, you can start the application process to get your card.

Keep in mind that just because you get the card now doesn’t mean that it lasts forever. You will need to have a medical evaluation each year to determine whether you are still eligible.

How Many Medical Marijuana Dispensaries in Alaska?

Since Alaska has allowed medical marijuana for a long time, it makes sense that it would have quite a few dispensaries available. Even with a smaller population than a lot of states, there are still 160 licensed dispensaries in the state. More, of course, opened once recreational marijuana was passed.

We’re not currently live in this state — but our trusted partner Heally is. Click here to see if you qualify.

  • Is medical cannabis legal in Alaska?

    Yes! Medical cannabis use in Alaska has been legalized since 1998, making it one of the first states in the US to follow California’s medical cannabis laws.

  • What about adult-use cannabis?

    Adult-use cannabis, or recreational cannabis, is also legal in Alaska. The state legalized this form of cannabis use in 2014 and has been thriving since.

  • Where can you buy cannabis in Alaska?

    Both medical patients and recreational consumers will purchase their cannabis at licensed dispensaries throughout the state. Shops are not exclusive to medical patients nor are they exclusive to recreational shoppers; they all operate the same.

  • Where can you consume your cannabis?

    You must enjoy your cannabis products privately, as public consumption is against the law. This means that private residences or establishments that have a valid onsite consumption endorsement are the only places you can legally consume your cannabis products. 

  • How much cannabis can you legally possess?

    Cannabis consumers in Alaska are allowed to possess up to one ounce of flower and concentrates. When transporting your products from the dispensary to your home, make sure they are kept in their sealed containers and in the trunk of your vehicle to prevent any hassle.

  • Can you grow weed at home in Alaska?

    Yes! In Alaska, you are allowed to cultivate up to six immature plants and three flowering plants. In a single-family home, you can legally grow up to 12 cannabis plants, with up to six being flowering buds. 


    Regardless, none of these plants or cultivation stations can be in the view of the public eye by any means.

  • Who runs the medical marijuana registry?

    Alaska’s Department of Health and Social Services oversees the medical marijuana registry in the state. They’re in charge of all information pertaining to patients, patient eligibility, and caregivers.

  • How do you qualify for a medical card in Alaska?

    To qualify for a medical card in Alaska, you must be diagnosed with at least one of their qualifying health conditions, be a resident of Alaska, and have been seen by an approved physician within the last 16 months prior to application. 


    The qualifying conditions to get your medical card are as follows:


    • Cachexia or wasting syndrome
    • Cancer
    • Chronic or severe pain
    • Glaucoma
    • HIV/AIDS
    • Multiple Sclerosis 
    • Persistent muscle spasms
    • Seizures, including those characteristics of epilepsy
    • Severe nausea

  • What is the registration process like?

    To register for Alaska’s medical marijuana program, you must first meet with a qualified doctor and receive a signed physician’s statement affirming that you have been diagnosed with at least one of the state’s qualifying conditions. Then, you can apply online and submit this statement. Along with the statement, Alaska requires a photocopy of your driver’s license or ID, as well as a $25 payment.

  • Can people from out of state purchase cannabis in Alaska?

    Yes! If you are 21 or older and have a valid ID, you’re able to purchase adult-use cannabis in Alaska. However, there is no reciprocity for out-of-state medical patients, unfortunately. 

We're not currently live in this state — but our trusted partner Heally is. Click here to see if you qualify.

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