While you may have heard of a new bill proposed to legalize medical marijuana in North Carolina, there is currently still no legal means of possessing the plant in your state. While marijuana is decriminalized to some degree when it comes to possession of small amounts, the penalties for possession of larger amounts can still be very severe.

Possession for personal use

 NORML states that marijuana is now a schedule IV substance in North Carolina, putting it lower on the DEA’s priority list than many other substances. However, it is still a felony to possess more than 1.5 ounces of the plant, and you could be punished with a $1,000 fine and up to 8 months of incarceration if you are caught. If you are caught with less than a half ounce, on the other hand, you could be fined a maximum of $200 and will not face any possible jail time as long as it is your first offense—though you may still wind up with a misdemeanor on your record.

Possession with intent to distribute

Do be aware that in North Carolina, having more than 10 pounds of marijuana can potentially land you a charge of possession with intent to distribute. Even having between 10 to 50 pounds can give you a $5,000 fine and up to 39 months of incarceration. The highest penalties are for those caught with more than 10,000 pounds, and in these instances, the fine could be as high as $200,000 and the incarceration period could last up to 222 months.

This article is meant to inform you of the legal status of marijuana in your state and is not legal advice.