Get a Massachusetts Medical Marijuana Card

Marijuana in Massachusetts is legal on a medical basis. But to be able to access medical marijuana what you need is a medical marijuana card. In a state where both medical, as well as recreational marijuana, is legal one might be confused as to why one should get a medical marijuana card.
We will tell you all of that and a lot more in the following sections. Massachusetts actually legalized both medical and recreational cannabis in the past 10 years. So, the legislation for both is quite new and a lot of laws might not be familiar to you.

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How to Get a Medical Marijuana Card in Massachusetts


To know how to get a medical marijuana card in Massachusetts you should know that the minimum age to apply is 18. What you need to have is a qualifying condition stated under the law. Caregivers are also allowed to apply for a medical marijuana card on behalf of the qualifying patients.
Before you can apply to the Massachusetts Medical Use of Marijuana Program, you need to find a health care provider to diagnose you.

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What is the Process To Get a Medical Marijuana Card In Massachusetts


Here’s what is the process to get a medical marijiuana card in Massachusetts.

  • ✔ Check if you have a medical condition that qualifies for a medical marijuana card under the state law
  • ✔ Search for a health care provider who is registered with the state Medical Use of Marijuana Program; Health care providers include physicians, physician assistants, and nurse practitioners. Be careful as only state-licensed health clinics are allowed to carry out 420 evaluations in the state of Massachusetts.
  • ✔ Visit the healthcare clinic to have a discussion with the doctor regarding whether or not cannabis is a good fit for you or not. Owing to the pandemic telemedicine certifications have also started.
  • ✔ If you qualify for a medical marijuana card you will receive a PIN number from your healthcare provider.
  • ✔ This PIN is what will help you register online to the Massachusetts Medical Use of Marijuana Program website.
  • ✔ Your application will include a current government-issued ID and a current photograph. There previously used to be a $50 registration fee but that has now been eliminated.

Waiting For Your Medical Marijuana Card in Massachusetts


Once you are through the registration process, you need to monitor your email account. You will receive an email from the virtual gateway. This link usually expires in about 7 days from the date it is sent. Another caveat is that you can only click on the link once. So, ensure you have a secure internet connection.
If you want to make any changes to the information you have submitted to the MMJ Online System, you need to do this within 5 business days of submitting your application. Since applications are reviewed in the same order that they are received, you just have about a 5-day window to make the changes before the application goes under review.
You receive your plastic ID card in about 1-2 weeks after being approved. But recently the Cannabis Control Commission has started a program called Initial Access. This enables qualifying patients to make their way to a dispensary the moment they receive approval. Under this program instead of waiting for a plastic identification card, you are sent a temporary one via e-mail that you print. It is valid for 14 days.

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When you apply for a medical marijuana card in Massachusetts, you need to provide proof of residency. We have compiled a list of documents that you present as proof of residency for your medical marijuana card.

  • ✔ Utility Bill
  • ✔ Current Massachusetts Based Motor Vehicle Registration
  • ✔ Tuition Bill
  • ✔ Property Tax or Excise Tax Bill
  • ✔ Car Insurance Policy
  • ✔ Mortgage, Lease, or Loan Documents
  • ✔ U.S. Marriage Certificate
  • ✔ First Class Mail From Any Federal or State Agency
  • ✔ Current MA-issued Professional license

To successfully register for a medical marijuana card you need to present a certain form of ID. Any of the following will be accepted as valid proof of ID in Massachusetts.

  • ✔ A Massachusetts Driver’s License
  • ✔ Massachusetts ID Card (with a photograph)
  • ✔ A U.S. passport or any other documents that proves that you are a resident of Massachusetts
  • ✔ U.S. military ID or any other documents that prove that you are a resident of Massachusetts

Here’s how you prepare for registering for a Medical Marijuana Card in Massachusetts.

  • ✔ Keep a device around that is capable of scanning and uploading documents like a mobile phone
  • ✔ The PIN, provided to you by your 420 doctors and emailed to you once you have been certified by the program
  • ✔ A valid form of identification
  • ✔ A photograph

What are the qualifying conditions for a medical marijuana card in Massachusetts are described in the state’s Act for the Humanitarian Medical Use of Marijuana as a “debilitating medical condition”. As per the law, a condition is debilitating if it impairs a person’s ability to perform one or more major life functions.
Qualifying conditions in Massachusetts include:

  • ✔ HIV/AIDS
  • ✔ Hepatitis C
  • ✔ Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
  • ✔ Parkinson’s disease
  • ✔ Glaucoma
  • ✔ Crohn’s disease
  • ✔ Cancer
  • ✔ Multiple sclerosis
  • ✔ Other conditions as the patient’s physician sees fit.

What Are The Laws Regarding Medical Marijuana in Massachusetts


Medical marijuana was legalized in Massachusetts four years before it was approved for recreational use. In Massachusetts, you have no possession limit imposed on you as a medical user. You can possess a 60-day amount which is left to the discretion of your medical marijuana doctor.

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Benefits of A Medical Marijuana Card in Massachusetts


In a state where recreational marijuana is legal, a recurring question generally is why should a person go through the process of getting a medical marijuana card. Well, there are plenty of reasons, as you will see for yourself.

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With a Massachusetts medical marijuana card, no matter which dispensary you walk into you do not have to pay any state sales tax on your purchase. That helps you save quite a bit of money as the tax rate of the state can easily climb up to 6.25%.
This is separate from the 10.75% excise tax that is levied on all recreational purchases and adding to this is the 3% tax that is dependent on the city or town that the dispensary is located in.
All of that together takes the tax amount up to 20% of the purchase for any recreational marijuana user. This is the precise tax that one does not need to pay as a medical user.

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In Massachusetts, in preparation for the influx of people making their way to dispensaries to get their hands on cannabis the state has come up with a law that requires 35% of the medical-grade cannabis to be reserved for medical patients.
If I have to explain it in simpler terms then Massachusetts medical marijuana cardholders are given preference over recreational users. Another thing to keep in mind is the fact that there are plenty of medical-only dispensaries that you can’t even enter unless you have a medical marijuana card. So, having a medical marijuana card is a great idea.

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Edibles are one of the easiest and most discreet ways to consume your marijuana medication. In Massachusetts, recreational marijuana shops can only sell edibles that contain edibles with a potency of 5mg THC. As a medical user, however, the potency limit is a lot higher. That too without the addition of the state and excise taxes.

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In Massachusetts, the only people who can request home delivery of cannabis are medical marijuana cardholders. Recreational users cannot avail of this facility. This is a benefit that is only reserved for people who hold a medical marijuana card. People buying recreationally need to make their way to the dispensary.

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A person can apply for a medical marijuana card when they turn 18 but to be able to use marijuana on a recreational level, you need to be 21. So, if you are using marijuana medically, it is in everyone’s best interest that you get a medical marijuana card.

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Another great aspect of a medical marijuana card in Massachusetts is that you encounter much shorter lines due to the installation of patient dedicated counters at both medical as well as adult-use dispensaries.

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If this is one aspect of stopping you from receiving your medical marijuana card, then you don’t have to worry. All medical dispensaries are required by law to have dedicated patient consultation rooms so that they can speak freely about their conditions.

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Understanding the Massachusetts Medical Marijuana Bill


Massachusetts passed its Medical Marijuana Initiative or Question 3 with 63% of the vote in the year 2012.
This was also the year when all state and civil penalties pertaining to possession while using marijuana to treat a qualifying condition were eliminated. Qualifying patients were allowed to purchase cannabis from state-regulated dispensaries and under certain conditions even grow it yourself.

Learn About The Process Of Receiving a Medical Marijuana Card in Massachusetts


Unlike most other states, the process of getting a medical marijuana card in Massachusetts is a little longer. Instead of a three-step process like in California, you have a 5 step process you need to follow to receive your medical marijuana card here.
The five-step process is divided into two parts.

Before Registering Online

  • ✔ You need to get a certification from a qualified healthcare provider. So, schedule an appointment and make an inquiry about the Medical Use of Marijuana Program. (This is where we can help you out)

Platforms like Online Medical Card can help you with this step.

  • ✔ Once you’re certified, your health care provider will then provide you with a PIN number to help you register with the Program

To Register Online You Will Require

  • ✔ The PIN, as provided by your healthcare provider
  • ✔ Any current, acceptable form of identification (ID) (as mentioned above)
  • ✔ Currently accepted photograph of yourself

That’s the process! Once under review, the application is processed in about 15 days depending on the number of applications.

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What are Massachusetts Marijuana Growing Laws


The answer to what are Massachusetts marijuana growing laws is that anyone above the age of 21 and over is allowed to cultivate up to six plants inside their house or up to 12 if there are two or more people residing in the space.
The plants need to be grown in a place that is either protected by a lock or some other security device. The location that you pick should not be visible from any public place unless a person uses binoculars, aircraft, or some other optical aid.
Another aspect of Massachusetts medical marijuana laws is that no manufacturing of marijuana or hemp by means of any liquid or gas apart from alcohol can take place. Anything that has a flashpoint of below 100 degrees Fahrenheit can take place.
Before full legalization came into effect in 2020, just marijuana patients experiencing hardship were allowed to grow their own marijuana at home for personal use. This is called the ‘hardship cultivation’ rule in the state of Massachusetts as per the state health officials.
If one wanted to qualify for this particular benefit, they were required to show proof of one of the following:

  • ✔ Verified financial hardship
  • ✔ Lack of a registered medical marijuana dispensary falling within a reasonable distance of the patient’s residence ( the distance has not been specified)
  • ✔ Physical incapacity to access any reasonable transport

The patient or the personal caregiver is required to grow marijuana at one of the residences, not both the places. Plants need to be cultivated and then stored in an enclosed, locked area that is not accessible to the public. Additionally, the state guidelines are vague about how much marijuana can be grown.
Only an amount that is sufficient to provide the qualifying patient with a sixty-day supply is allowed.

What Are The Qualifying Conditions Of Caregivers in Massachusetts


The answer what are the qualifying conditions of caregivers in Massachusetts is that:

  • ✔ Be a resident of the state of Massachusetts
  • ✔ Serve only one qualifying patient (unless you are an immediate family member)
  • ✔ Be at least 21 years of age at the time of the applying,
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How To Register as a Caregiver in Massachusetts


Here’s how you can register as a caregiver in Massachusetts.
The first thing to note is that a qualifying patient needs to submit the following, in a form or manner that the department sees fit.

  • ✔ The personal caregiver’s full name, address, date of birth, telephone number and email address, and a statement declaring that the individual is at least 21 years old.
  • ✔ The name, date of birth, and address of the qualifying patient for whom the personal caregiver will be providing assistance with medical marijuana
  • ✔ A copy of the personal caregiver’s government-issued ID card or any other identity document that is verifiable and accepted by the department.
  • ✔ A statement of whether or not the caregiver will be cultivating marijuana for the qualifying patient, and what the address will be of the grow unit if a patient is granted a hardship cultivation registration.
  • ✔ A written acknowledgment by the personal caregiver of the limitations that they have to follow to be able to cultivate, possess and dispense to their registered patient.
  • ✔ An attestation by the caregiver that they will not be engaging in any diversion of marijuana that has been assigned to their qualifying patient and they understand the protections given by the Act for the medical use of cannabis.
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Duties of A Caregiver In Massachusetts


  • ✔ Transport a registered qualifying patient to and fro from the clinic
  • ✔ Obtain and transport the required marijuana from the RMD on behalf of the registered qualifying patient
  • ✔ Cultivating marijuana on behalf of a registered qualified patient who has been granted a hardship cultivation registration
  • ✔ Prepare marijuana in a manner that is fit for consumption by the registered qualifying patient
  • ✔ Administer marijuana to medical marijuana cardholder.
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In light of the COVID pandemic, we advise all our patients to see a doctor online instead of visiting the clinic.