“If I’m on probation, can I still use medical marijuana?”
Pennsylvania’s highest court made a ruling in 2020 that Pennsylvania residents who are on probation are no longer prevented from using medical cannabis.
The ruling came in response to a Lebanon County lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on behalf of several residents. In September 2019, county officials notified all probationers that they had 30 days to rid their system of marijuana or they would be cited for a probation violation, even if they were using state-legal medical marijuana.
The decision of the court was based on the direct wording of Act 16, “The Medical Marijuana Act contains an immunity provision protecting patients from government sanctions,” wrote Chief Justice Thomas G. Saylor in the ruling. “Per the statute, no such individual ‘shall be subject to arrest, prosecution or penalty in any manner, or denied any right or privilege…solely for the lawful use of medical marijuana…or for any other action taken in accordance with this act.”
This case, therefore, set a precedent state-wide with the PA Supreme Court ruling that individual PA counties may not set laws that prevent those serving probation from treating with medical cannabis.