Medical Marijuana in New York


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Program Overview:

New York has legalized the use of both medical marijuana and adult use marijuana. New York first legalized the use of medical marijuana in July of 2014 after an emotional debate on the Senate floor, eventually passing the bill with a 49-10 majority. In March of 2021, New York legalized marijuana for adult use and reorganized both of the state’s marijuana programs via the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act (MRTA). Now under the MRTA, the medical, adult use, and hemp cannabis programs are all regulated under the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) which is governed by the Cannabis Control Board (CCB). The OCM oversees all marijuana-related activities including: regulations, licensure, compliance, and quality control.

In addition to providing regulatory oversight to growers, processors, dispensaries, physicians, microbusinesses, consumption sites (lounges) and laboratories, the MRTA and its regulations will allow adults who are at least 21 years old to buy and possess up to three ounces of cannabis flower and up to 24 grams of concentrated cannabis (oils, tincture, edibles, vapes, etc.) from licensed dispensaries. The licensure application process begins in 2022 and adult-use sales begin no later than 2023.

The MRTA levies three taxes on the adult-use cannabis industry: a $0.005 – $0.03 tax on distributors based on products’ THC concentration, a 9% retail state excise tax, and a 4% retail local excise tax. Home cultivation by adults will be legal with restrictions.

Though the MRTA reorganized New York’s existing medical marijuana program, “registered organizations” continue to provide 60-day supplies of medicine to patients for the treatment of a variety of approved conditions, including:

  • cancer,
  • HIV infection or AIDS,
  • amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS),
  • Parkinson’s disease,
  • multiple sclerosis,
  • spinal cord injury with spasticity,
  • epilepsy,
  • inflammatory bowel disease,
  • neuropathy,
  • Huntington’s disease,
  • post-traumatic stress disorder,
  • and chronic pain.

The medicine may be provided in the following forms:

  • vaporization cartridges,
  • pills,
  • oils,
  • oral sprays,
  • and oral powders.
  • Whole flower cannabis for use in vaporization will be available to patients.

For the latest updates on New York marijuana policy visit the OCM’s Pressroom:



Cannabis Law PA attorneys are licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, and Maryland. Cannabis Law PA attorneys serve Ohio clients on a non-legal consulting basis. Cannabis Law PA does not provide legal advice to clients regarding Ohio law.