In Growing Marijuana in New Jersey – NJ Cannabis State Laws (2021) we gave a brief overview on how New Jersey residents can apply to their state’s medical marijuana program. Recreational marijuana is now legal in the Garden State but if you are a patient with a debilitating condition, there are a few reasons that might make you want to register for a medical marijuana card.
Overview of Medical Marijuana in New Jersey
In 2010, New Jersey governor Jon Corzine signed into law S 119, also known as the Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act (CUMMA). This allowed patients who were terminal or had a qualifying health condition to use medical marijuana. However, the law did not allow patients to cultivate cannabis at home. The law was further expanded in 2017 when the state’s Medicinal Marijuana Review Panel added a number of other qualifying conditions and in 2019 by the Jake Honig Compassionate Use Medical Cannabis Act which allowed greater patient access.
You can read up on the law here: SENATE, No. 119 STATE OF NEW JERSEY 213th LEGISLATURE.
New Jersey’s law allows registered patients to possess 3 ounces of marijuana per month or as determined by their physician. Meanwhile, patients with terminal conditions may have an unlimited supply. Home cultivation is still not allowed for medical or recreational use.
To qualify, a patient must have at least one of the following conditions:
- Addiction substitute therapy for opioid reduction
- Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
- Cancer (includes associated chronic pain and/or severe nausea)
- Chronic pain
- Chronic visceral pain
- Crohn’s disease
- Dysmenorrhea (menstrual cramps)
- HIV/AIDS (includes associated chronic pain and/or severe nausea)
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Muscular Dystrophy
- Opioid dependency
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Seizure and/or spasticity disorders
- Tourette’s syndrome
- Any terminal illness if a doctor has determined the patient will die within a year
To qualify, your physician must certify that you have at least one qualifying condition. Patients may not petition additional medical conditions at this time.
Patients under the age of 18 may also apply to New Jersey’s Medical Marijuana Program as long as they enlist the help of their parents or legal guardian. They are also required to have a caregiver.
Those who wish to apply as a primary caregiver in New Jersey must be a resident at least 18 years old and has not been convicted of a felony drug offense. A caregiver may provide service for more than one patient while patients may designate up to two caregivers.
Why should you get a marijuana card in New Jersey
Even though recreational cannabis is already legal in New Jersey, a medical marijuana card is the only way minor patients can use cannabis for their conditions legally. Medical marijuana is also taxed at a lower rate in New Jersey.
How to get a medical marijuana card in New Jersey
Applying to New Jersey’s medical marijuana program is fairly simple and can be done completely online. If you are qualified and would like to apply, here are the steps you should follow:
For patients, minor patients and caregivers
- Consult with a healthcare practitioner approved by the NJ MMP and get a certification for your qualifying condition. You can find a licensed doctor here.
- Make sure you have the following requirements ready:
- A clear digital photo taken according to the NJ MMP photo guidelines
- A government issued ID showing your photo and address. You can use any of the following:
- Driver’s license
- County ID.
If your ID does not show your current NJ address, you need to provide two proofs of NJ address which can be any of the following:
- Utility bill issued within 90 days
- Correspondence from the IRS or NJ Division of Taxation
- Federal, state, or local government correspondence
- Bank statements
- Go to the NJ Medicinal Marijuana Registry page and provide all the necessary information and documentary requirements there. If applying as a caregiver, download the caregiver criminal background check form and follow the attached instructions.
- Once the MMP has reviewed your application, you will be notified via email to finalize your application and pay the fee. Patient and caregiver registrations valid for 2 years cost $100 but you may apply for a reduced fee of $20 if you qualify for any of the following:
- Senior citizen aged 65 and above
- US military veteran
- Social Security Disability (SSD) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- NJ Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- NJ Medicaid
- NJ Temporary Disability Benefits
- Medicare-under the age of 65
Frequently Asked Questions on Getting a New Jersey Medical Marijuana Card
Having a New Jersey medical marijuana ID card is the only way minor patients in the state with a debilitating condition will be able to legally use medical marijuana.
Patients in New Jersey who have at least one qualifying condition may apply for a medical marijuana card.
A medical marijuana card is the only way minor patients with a debilitating condition can use cannabis in New Jersey. Medical cannabis is also taxed at a lower rate, making it cheaper.
You can get your New Jersey medical marijuana card within 30 days after you’ve submitted your application.
It costs $50 for patients or caregivers to apply for a medical marijuana card valid for 2 years in New Jersey. However, senior citizens, veterans and those participating in certain financial or medical aid may be able to apply for a reduced fee.
Home cultivation of recreational and medical marijuana is still not allowed in New Jersey.
New Jersey marijuana laws allow registered patients to possess 3 ounces of marijuana per month or as determined by their physician. Meanwhile, patients with terminal conditions may have an unlimited supply.
If you’re a patient in New Jersey who needs marijuana for your condition, you would only probably want to apply into the state’s medical marijuana program if you are a minor patient or need a higher supply limit. The fees for registering in the NJ MMP is somewhere on the average which amounts to $50 per year but if you qualify for a reduced fee, then it is definitely worth applying.