The taboo against the use of marijuana seems to be weakening somewhat as various states and countries move to legalize or decriminalize it. Still, pot remains illegal at the federal level and in many states, so using it is not without legal risks. Is marijuana still illegal in Iowa? Generally speaking, it is, but there is a limited medical marijuana exception. This blog post will take a closer look at the legal status of marijuana in the Hawkeye State.
Cannabidiol is a non-psychoactive extract found in marijuana plants. In Iowa, patients with intractable epilepsy, and their caregivers, are allowed to possess cannabidiol. Outside of this very limited exception, marijuana possession and sale are against Iowa state law.
It is a felony in Iowa to sell any amount of marijuana. Selling less than 50 kilograms of marijuana is punishable by a fine of between $1,000 and $5,000. Selling between 50 and 100 kilograms of marijuana is punishable by a fine of between $1,000 and $50,000. Selling between 100 and 1,000 kilograms of marijuana is punishable by a fine of between $5,000 and $100,000. Selling over 1,000 kilograms of marijuana, a huge amount of pot, is punishable by a fine of up to $1 million and a prison sentence of up to 50 years.
Penalties for marijuana possession are less strict, and courts often sentence defendants to rehabilitation if they are considered to be a chronic marijuana abuser. If a defendant successfully completes rehabilitation, they may be sentenced to probation.
While attitudes toward marijuana use have softened in recent years, a felony conviction still has serious consequences. In addition to large fines and possible prison time, a felony conviction on a drug offense can follow a person around for the rest of their life.