Is Weed Legal in New York?

If you’ve never been to the Big Apple and you’re wondering, is weed legal in New York, you are just where you need to be. For years, cannabis users and enthusiasts who have been traveling in and out of the state has this as their top question – so, we’ll get to the bottom of it!

We’ll let you know the ins and outs of the state’s marijuana use, as well as the government’s take on it!

A Brief History of Cannabis In New York


Being one of the most visited states in the country, they knew they had to step up and be liberated in terms of substance use.

The journey of marijuana legalization in New York began back in 2014. It was under the governance of Cuomo when the Compassionate Care Act was signed into law. As per the act, cannabis consumption forms that are not smoking were allowed and approved for medical marijuana patients. This included:

  • Vaping
  • Oils
  • Tinctures
  • Topicals

Then, in 2019, Governor Cuomo tried to walk and legalize recreational use of cannabis through the year’s state budget. This was not pushed, however, because several lawmakers aren’t agreeing to certain points and aspects about where the tax will be allocated.

Finally, in 2021, Governor Cuomo pushed in introducing his plan and intentions of legalizing adult-use cannabis with the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act or the CRTA. From here, legislators and lawmakers found a few gaps, forcing them to introduce an updated bill from 2020, which is the Marijuana Regulation and Tax Act or the MRTA.

Three (3) amendments have been sent to the legislators in the first quarter of 2021, and they were:

  • Creation of a new framework of how social equity grants are going to be distributed;
  • Allowing of marijuana home deliveries; and
  • Lower penalties for the selling of cannabis to underage people or illegally selling large volumes of marijuana

A month after, a new Senate Resolution was sent as a response supporting the MRTA. This would later be signed as S.854-A, known as the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act, establishing the foundation where a network will be built for the cultivation, processing, distribution, and selling of cannabis.

Is Weed Legal in New York?

Let’s now go to the fun part – is weed legal in New York?

As of writing, the answer is yes, it is for both medical and recreational use. Therefore, in the state, cannabis patients and enthusiasts are able to possess, carry, and consume marijuana under highly specific circumstances and regulations.

Legal Adult Use and Marijuana Possession in New York City

Legal Adult Use and Marijuana Possession in New York City

Adults who are 21 years or older are allowed to possess up to three (3) ounces of cannabis and up to 24 grams of concentrated cannabis. No one is legally allowed to have more than that amount.

Furthermore, under the said regulation, they are allowed to smoke or vape cannabis where tobacco smoking is allowed.

  • Cannabis smoking or use is not allowed in motor vehicles (even if parked)
  • Outdoor dining areas and restaurants also prohibit the use of the substance

People younger than 21 years old is still illicit for possessing, selling, or using any amount of cannabis.

Stores or dealers won’t be allowed to operate without a license or drive under the influence of cannabis.

Cannabis Growing and Cultivation

Adults are allowed to purchase cannabis products at licensed retailers and can grow three (#) cannabis plants at home. Areas with more than one (1) adult are allowed to grow six (6) plants.

In total, adults are allowed to store up to five (5) pounds of cannabis in their homes.

How to Get a New York Medical Marijuana Card?

How to Get a New York Medical Marijuana Card

This step-by-step guide will be outlined in guiding people how they can get a medical marijuana card in New York. We’ll give it to you in complete detail per step so you don’t miss any information!

  • Find a medical marijuana practitioner in New York. Ensure that the practitioner is registered and licensed with the state’s medical marijuana program.
  • Get a patient certification. You’ll only be certified if you meet the criteria for New York’s medical marijuana card.
  • Complete the application for your medical marijuana card.
  • Get and print your digital medical cannabis card. You’re allowed to print it within 30 days of receiving the digital copy or the document.

Penalties For Marijuana Offenses

Penalties For Marijuana Offenses

There are certain legalities and rules in possessing and consuming marijuana for all states. For the Big Apple, though, they are classified and measured with a maximum sentence of 15 years of jail time.

Violation or the unlawful possession of marijuana (more than three (3) ounces or more than 24 grams of concentrates) will incur a penalty of a $100 fine. Second offense can happen within the first three (3) years and will incur a $200 fine. Third and last offense will be up to $250 or 15 days of prison.

Class B misdemeanor could lead up to three (3) months of jail time and a fine of up to $500.

Class A misdemeanor could have a possible sentence of one (1) year and a fine of up to $1,000.

Class E, D, and C felony could end up in 4, 7, and 15 possible years of sentence and up to $5,000 to $15,000 of fine, respectively.

That’s what the deal is when it comes to marijuana in the state of New York. Being aware of it equips you with the right knowledge and thought of what you should and SHOULD NOT do when you are in the state and you are carrying cannabis.


Have more questions in mind? Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about the legalities of weed in the state of New York!

Are Edibles Legal in New York State?

In accordance with the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act or the MRTA, edibles are legal in New York. This is, of course, in conjunction with the legalities in terms of volume and amount of marijuana possessed by an individual.

New York Weed Legalization Date

New York legalized the recreational use of cannabis or marijuana in March of 2021. As of April 2022, a total of 52 recreational cannabis cultivation licenses have been granted within the state.

Final Thoughts

In case you were asking, is weed legal in New York, here’s your answer! We do hope we’ve shed some light about the legalities and the allowance of cannabis in the state of New York!

Christopher Andrews
I am Christopher Andrew, the owner of 420 Expert Adviser. I have been in cannabis cultivation for more than ten years, and I'm sharing my experience with you guys using this blog!

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