This year, it has been difficult to agree with one other about almost anything. But, this November, 66.91 % of New Jersey residents voted to legalize marijuana. So, what exactly does this mean? How will things change? What can we expect in the coming months?
Can I Buy Weed in New Jersey?
Not yet. As of now, there is no legal way to buy marijuana in New Jersey (outside of the medical marijuana program). While New Jerseyians have voted to legalize weed, new legislature has not yet been put into place. Before residents can legally purchase weed, lawmakers must pass new bills to decriminalize the possession of weed, and to establish industry rules and regulations.
Can I Still be Arrested for Weed in New Jersey?
Although New Jersey residents voted to legalize marijuana, a new law has not been put into place yet. So there is now a gray area when it comes to the legality of the use and possession of marijuana. If the legalization of weed is added to the New Jersey constitution, those arrested for possession may be able to use this as a new legal defense. But, until new laws are passed, you can still be arrested for breaking NJ’s existing laws.
Is There a Set Date yet?
No, as of now, things are still up in the air. Some predict that, if all goes according to plan, dispensaries will open and begin selling weed in late 2021 or mid-2022. This will not be a quick process, as other states have demonstrated. NJ.com stated that Massachusetts did not open its first dispensary until two years after voters approved legalization, and Maine took about four years for dispensaries to open and begin selling weed.
Who Will the new Laws Apply to?
Weed will not be legal for everyone. Like alcohol, only residents who are 21 years or older will be able to legally purchase weed. Those under 21 years old may still be arrested for possession.
While residents have voted to legalize weed, New Jersey is still in the early stages of starting this process. For more information, keep an eye on our blog to see how things progress and contact McNerney & McAuliffe with any questions regarding drug-related charges.
Contact our Experienced New Jersey Firm
Here at McNerney & McAuliffe, we understand how confusing certain legal matters can be, which is why we are here to provide clients from all walks of life with the experienced, compassionate legal guidance they need. If you require the legal assistance of an attorney to help you through a criminal law matter, personal injury matter, family law matter, or otherwise, you can turn to us. Contact McNerney & McAuliffe today to learn more about what we can do for you.