Both medical and recreational cannabis are legal in New Mexico. Govenor Michelle Lujan Grisham signed House Bill 2, enacting the Cannabis Regulation Act on April 12, 2021, allowing for taxation and sales, consumption, and home cultivation of cannabis. New Mexico legalized medical marijuana in April 2007 with HB155, the Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act. The state also decriminalized cannabis in July of 2019. Recreational sales began April 1, 2022.
Any person twenty-one (21) years of age or older may possess up to two (2) ounces of cannabis, sixteen (16) grams of cannabis extract, and eight hundred (800) milligrams of edible cannabis at one time when outside of their residence. Any amounts above that must be stored in the person’s home, away from public view. There is no possession limit for how much cannabis a resident may store in their home.
For medical marijuana, qualifying patients suffering from a state-approved debilitating condition are allowed to possess up to eight (8) ounces of medical cannabis over a ninety (90)-day period. According to New Mexico law, it lists two hundred and thirty (230) “units" as an alternative measurement to the eight (8) ounces.
Approved patients are also entitled to the following allowances:
- The right to purchase from a licensed non-profit producer
- The right to possess any paraphernalia for medical marijuana use
- The patient is given time to produce their medical card before any arrests or criminal charges are made
- The right to apply for a personal production license (PPL) for personal use. If approved, a patient can have up to sixteen (16) plants totaling four (4) mature and twelve (12) seedlings
Purchasing limits are set the same as possession for recreational cannabis, allowing for two (2) ounces of dried flower, sixteen (16) grams of extract, and eight hundred (800) milligrams of infused edible products.
Under the state Medical Cannabis Program, patients are not permitted to obtain more than eight (8) ounces of cannabis over a ninety (90)-day period. Qualified patients can designate a primary caregiver who can purchase and transport the medical marijuana to the patient. Where to Buy
The Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act specifies its purpose "is to allow the beneficial use of medical cannabis in a regulated system for alleviating symptoms caused by debilitating medical conditions and their medical treatments."
Debilitating medical conditions include:
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
Painful peripheral neuropathy
Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Spinal cord damage
To complete the enrollment process, a prospective patient must first complete an application that includes a state ID and signature from, "a provider with prescribing authority certifying the applicant has been diagnosed with one of the qualifying conditions to become a patient in the program."
If your condition is not on the list, you can petition the Medical Cannabis Advisory Board for it to be added. Get Your Card
Cannabis consumption is allowable only in private residences and smoking-permitted areas. House Bill 2 specifically allows for the creation of such areas. As per the bill: “ Smoking in a cannabis consumption area on a licensed premises shall be allowed only if the cannabis consumption area is in a designated smoking area or in a standalone building from which smoke does not infiltrate other indoor workplaces or other indoor public places where smoking is otherwise prohibited pursuant to the Dee Johnson Clean Indoor Air Act.”
Under the Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act, the state's Medical Cannabis Program does not allow patients or caregivers to consume or possess medical marijuana in the following areas:
Prohibited Consumption Areas:
- In a school bus or public vehicle
- On school grounds or property
- In the workplace of the qualified patient's or primary caregiver's employment
- A public park, recreation center, youth center or other public place.
Driving Under the Influence
Cannabis DUIs are treated similarly to alcohol DUIs. Both standard residents and medical patients are subject to liability and/or criminal prosecution for any actions committed while operating a vehicle while under the influence of medicinal cannabis.
Specific regulations for transporting recreational cannabis by private individuals have not been outlined, however they are presumed to follow regulations set out by other states, which require that any cannabis be in a sealed container out of reach of the driver.
Qualified primary caregivers are permitted to obtain and transport medical cannabis from a licensed nonprofit to the qualified patient.
Under 220.127.116.11 NMAC, active patients and licensed caregivers should ensure that product(s) purchased from a licensed nonprofit producer remain in the package or container provided at the time of purchase.
If the package or container is damaged, the product label and any other identifying information from the package or container shall be kept with the cannabis or cannabis derived product upon transfer to another package or container.
Patients and caregivers may not take medicinal cannabis outside of the state, or transport marijuana from outside of New Mexico into the state. No cannabis may cross state lines.
Residents of New Mexico twenty-one (21) and older may cultivate up to six (6) mature cannabis plants and six (6) immature cannabis plants per person; provided that despite a household having multiple residents, no more than twelve (12) mature cannabis plants may be present in one household.
Under the state Medical Cannabis Program, it is permissible for qualified patients or caregivers to cultivate their own cannabis. Patients interested in growing their own marijuana must first apply for a Personal Production License (PPL) from the state. Once approved, patients are allowed to cultivate up to sixteen (16) marijuana plants with four (4) mature and twelve (12) seedlings allowed at any given time. Caregivers can also assist PPL patients with growing cannabis at the patient's home.Explore Strains
As of July 1, 2020, New Mexico grants reciprocity to all out-of-state patients with a valid medical marijuana registration from their home state. To be able to purchase in a New Mexico dispensary, a visiting patient must:
- Present a government-issued proof of authorization
- Present a government-issued photo identification card
- Register electronically at a dispensary in order to track units of medical cannabis purchased
- Sign your electronic registration at the dispensary (dispensary staff cannot sign for you)
A visiting patient's registration is good for one (1) year, or for the remaining duration of their out-of-state credentials. You can find more information for reciprocal participation here.
Medical cannabis delivery is permitted in New Mexico. Additionally, the Cannabis Regulation Act allows for delivery and courier licenses.
Legal Disclaimer: This article is not meant to serve as legal advice and is for informational purposes only. Laws and regulations are always changing. Therefore, if you have any legal questions regarding New Mexico's medical marijuana laws you must consult with a licensed New Mexico attorney.