Frequently Asked Questions

  • Is medical marijuana legal in California? What about recreational cannabis?

    Yes to both! California was actually the first state in the country to legalize cannabis for medical use. Several years later, the vote to legalize recreational cannabis also passed.

  • Who qualifies for a Medical Marijuana Identification Card (MMIC)?

    To qualify for a Medical Marijuana Identification Card, or MMIC, you must be 18 years of age or older, a resident of California, and have at least one of the medical conditions listed within the program. 


    If you’re under the age of 18, you can still receive an MMIC. For minors who do have a parental figure in their lives, the parent or guardian will be contacted and have the ability to make cannabis-related decisions and purchases for the minor. If the minor has been emancipated or has declared self-sufficient status, then they may apply as qualified patients themselves. 

  • What are California’s qualifying medical conditions?

    The medical conditions to get an MMIC in California are:


    • AIDS
    • Anorexia
    • Arthritis
    • Cachexia (wasting syndrome)
    • Cancer
    • Chronic pain
    • Glaucoma
    • Migraine
    • Persistent muscle spasms (e.g., spasms associated with multiple sclerosis)
    • Seizures (e.g., epileptic seizures) 
    • Severe nausea 
    • Any other chronic or persistent medical symptom that either substantially limits a person’s ability to conduct one or more of major life activities as defined in the federal Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, or if not alleviated, may cause serious harm to the person’s safety, physical, or mental health.

  • How do you get your MMIC?

    To receive your MMIC, you must first meet with a qualified physician who will determine whether or not you have at least one of the medical conditions listed in the program. From there, they will write you a medical recommendation for cannabis. 


    After you get your medical recommendation, you can apply for an actual MMIC in person, though you can print out the necessary forms through the California Department of Public Health’s website. You will also need a copy of your recommendation, proof of identity, and proof of California residency. Bring all of these things with you to your county program and they will help you with the rest of the process. 

  • How long will it take to get your MMIC?

    Once you’ve sent in all the necessary documents to your county program, the state has 30 days to approve or deny your request. If they approve it, your MMIC will become available within five days, and you’ll be ready to start shopping.

  • How long are the medical cards valid for?

    In California, medical cards are valid for one year.

  • How do you renew your card?

    After one year, you are going to have to go through the same process you did when you applied for your MMIC initially. If your medical information is still valid and up-to-date, you can use this. If not, you must go to your physician and re-obtain the necessary paperwork.

  • Can the MMIC refer you to an approved physician?

    No, the MMIC does not have a list of approved physicians, nor will they provide you with a recommendation/referral. This must be done on your own or through other state programs.

  • Are California medical cards valid in other states?

    Whether or not your medical card is valid in other states will wholly depend on the state you’re visiting and their specific laws. Out-of-state medical cards are not valid in California for purchase.