CBD in Alabama: Official Buyers Guide

As more states legalize cannabidiol (CBD), laws across the country are changing rapidly, including in the state of Alabama. Here's what you need to know about Alabama's laws, MMJ cards, and even where to buy CBD.

CBD in Alabama

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Whether you’re an Alabama resident or just a tourist passing through, you’ll benefit from this article as we explain the legality of CBD in this state and point you in the right direction to locate and purchase legal CBD products. 

CBD is only one chemical in the Cannabis sativa plant, also known as marijuana or hemp, and is sold online and in shops across the country. 

The state of Alabama has strict marijuana laws. Their laws are some of the harshest in the United States.

Since evolving laws relating to CBD can be complicated, it's essential to understand the specific rules and regulations where you reside to avoid unnecessary fines and jail time. 

In the state of Alabama, how can you make sure what you’re purchasing is legal?

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Is CBD Legal in Alabama? (Laws & Regulations) 

AL

CBD Legality

Dispensaries 

Recreational 

Medicinal

To further explain CBD's legality in Alabama, it's helpful to break down the components found in the cannabis plant. CBD and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are two of many active ingredients.

THC is the one that gets you “high.” CBD is non-psychoactive but has similar medical benefits to THC. There are many myths and misconceptions about CBD and THC, but they have proven to work best together.

CBD is currently legal in Alabama, but with certain restrictions. It must be derived from industrial hemp and not from regular marijuana, and the THC concentration amount must not exceed 0.03%. 

Marijuana is not currently legal in Alabama. Smoking or even possessing any recreational marijuana amount can lead to a one-year jail term and a $6,000 fine.

However, good news may be on the horizon for those seeking marijuana for medical purposes. The state is currently waiting for approval of a medical marijuana bill. 

Over the years, Alabama has seen developments in laws and regulations regarding medical marijuana and CBD.

Here are a few of the highlights:

  • On April 1, 2014, the Alabama Senate approved "Carly's Law," which authorized the University of Alabama at Birmingham to study low-THC products to treat seizure disorders for up to 5 years.

This meant patients could get a prescription to use CBD only through the University.

  • On May 4, 2016, Alabama approved “Leni's Law," which decriminalized CBD and allowed more physicians to refer patients to use CBD for more conditions.

The law widened CBD access by adding debilitating conditions that produce seizures to the list of qualifying conditions.

  • In 2018, the Farm Bill removed hemp from the controlled substance list after identifying it as an agricultural commodity. The Bill defined hemp as containing 0.03% or less of THC on a dry weight basis.

This Bill broadly legalized CBD products derived from hemp which contained less than 0.3% THC. By September 2018 the legality of CBD products was affirmed by Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall.

Due to delays caused by the coronavirus pandemic, Alabama is currently waiting for the state House of Representatives to approve the medical marijuana bill. 

If the Bill is approved, Alabama would finally become the 34th state able to legalize medical marijuana.

Alabama CBD Possession Limits

Possession limits on CBD products in Alabama are simple, and the limits are entirely in line with Alabama laws and regulations. Any product in your possession must not contain more than 0.3% THC.  

How to Get a MMJ Card in Alabama

Since marijuana is currently NOT legal in Alabama, medical marijuana cards are not currently available. 

Pending legislative vote, The State Department of Health would start and then manage a program for the issuance of identification cards to all qualified patients. 

Qualified patients would include anyone 19 years or older who was diagnosed with a qualifying medical condition by a physician. Patients that are 18 and younger would need a parent/guardian to oversee the cannabis.

In Alabama, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, conditions that qualify include the following: epileptic conditions, seizures, wasting syndrome, chronic pain, nausea, muscle spasms, and illness resistant to conventional medicine.

When, and if, the medical marijuana bill enacts, there will be several steps required to obtain a medical marijuana card.

See below for step-by-step instructions:

  1. 1
    Most importantly, you must have a valid I.D. to prove your residency in the state of Alabama.
  2. 2
    You must obtain a copy of your medical records, which indicates that a doctor has diagnosed you with a qualifying condition. (And don’t worry - obtaining your medical records is easy. Simply contact your Primary Care Doctor. If you don’t have one, a medical marijuana doctor may be able to help you find a nearby affordable clinic or possibly even take you on as a new patient.)
  3. 3

    After you’ve gotten your medical records, you must obtain written documentation from a doctor licensed in Alabama, which confirms that you are a qualifying patient. 

    It is helpful to bring your medical records with you to this appointment.

  4. 4
    Finally, apply to the state of Alabama for a Medical Marijuana Card. Once you're approved, you will receive your card in the mail. With this card (when the law permits!), you can start purchasing from dispensaries!

The Alabama Medical Marijuana Law, when approved, would give legal protection to patients in Alabama diagnosed with the following illnesses:

  • Cancer
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Anorexia
  • Glaucoma
  • Autism
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Chronic Depression
  • Chronic Pain
  • Dystonia
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Other diseases or treatment of diseases which produce either, Cachexia, Severe pain, Severe nausea, Seizures, or Persistent muscle spasms.

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Finding Marijuana Dispensaries in Alabama

There are currently no legal marijuana dispensaries in Alabama, but never fear, a variety of CBD products are legal and readily available.

The fastest and most convenient way to purchase CBD is online. There are many options for different products targeting different purposes, including those claiming to improve either anxiety, sleep, or pain. There are even THC-free options!

Click here to see the Best CBD Oil Brands to Buy in 2020!

If you prefer to shop in person, there are several vape shops and smoke shops in big cities such as Birmingham, Montgomery, Mobile, Tuscaloosa, and Huntsville.

Additionally, some wellness and health food stores, as well as pharmacies, may stock your legal CBD products.

As CBD popularity continues to rise, there will likely be more shops selling CBD products throughout the state.

FAQs

Before you start purchasing, here are a few useful FAQ’s to help you along:

How old do you have to be to buy CBD in Alabama?

The Alabama age requirement for tobacco usage is eighteen. Smoke shops require customers to be this age. Since many types of CBD products are sold in these shops, it’s safe to say CBD is available to people 18 or older.

How much cannabis can I grow at home?

Growing cannabis in Alabama is illegal. If you decide to grow a marijuana plant at home, be very aware - Alabama can charge you with trafficking cannabis, which can be considered a felony. 

Hemp, however, can now be legally grown (thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill!). 

That is if you obtain a license from the Alabama Department of Agriculture & Industries (ADAI) in the Alabama Hemp Program. 

There are a few rules involved, including size regulations for your product. The minimum growing size required in the Alabama Hemp Program depends on whether you’re growing outside or inside.

Outside: No less than 1,000 plants and no less than one (1) fully plantable acre.

Greenhouse/Inside Structure:  No less than 500 plants and no less than 1,500 square feet of planting 

It's also important to note that you must identify planting locations in your application. It will also be necessary to monitor and sample your crop to ensure that the THC level is below 0.3%, and thus hemp instead of marijuana.

For more information about legally farming hemp as part of an approved hemp regulatory program, click here.  

Where can I use my marijuana?

In the state of Alabama? Nowhere. Even possession of a single joint can get you up to a year in jail and a significant fine. 

Legal CBD products, such as oils, gummies, topicals, capsules, sleep aids, and even bath bombs can be consumed or used anywhere as long as the THC level at or below 0.3%.

How can I obtain a grow license in marijuana?

Since marijuana is off the table, you can submit an application to work with hemp. The Alabama Hemp Program has an annual application period, which occurs every Fall.  

Applications for 2021 are accepted from October 13, 2020, through 5:00 p.m. C.T. on November 30, 2020.  

There are three ways to submit your application:

1. Online

2. By email: plant.protection@agi.alabama.gov

3. Mail: Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries, Hemp Program, 1445 Federal Drive, Montgomery, AL 36107.

There is a non-refundable $200 application fee. If your application is approved, there is a $1000 license fee per growing area.

Next Steps

While the state of Alabama waits for the approval of a medical marijuana bill, its residents can legally enjoy a wide variety of CBD products. From oils, gummies, topicals, capsules, sleep aids, and bath bombs - there are many options to choose. 

Just remember that the CBD products must be derived from industrial hemp and not from regular marijuana, and the THC concentration amount must not exceed 0.03%.

With online options and various vape and smoke shops, legal CBD in Alabama will not be hard to find.

And if you get tired of simply waiting to hear if the State of Alabama passes legislature to make Alabama a legal, medical marijuana state - Take Action! Write your state legislators and ask the legislature to take up medical cannabis!

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Last Updated on October 20, 2020 by admin


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About the author 

Justin Powell

Justin Powell founded Hemp For Future to give direct answers to many of the questions surrounding THC, CBD, and everything in between. He’s been at the forefront of CBD advocacy for years, and as the go-to guru for many people, he decided to pour all his knowledge into Hemp For Future. He’s here to tell you about the best CBD gummies, how to stay under the legal THC allowance, and the core differences between commercial and in-home marijuana growth.

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