Consequences of Getting a Medical Card in Minnesota

Apply For Minnesota Medical Marijuana Card Online

Benefits of Getting a Medical Cannabis Registry Verification Document in Minnesota

Minnesota residents with registry verifications and listed in the Minnesota Medical Cannabis Registry enjoy the following benefits:

Legal Protection

Per the provisions of the 2014 Minnesota Cannabis Therapeutic Research Act (MCTRA) - SF2470, medical cannabis patients are exempt from legal harassment or prosecution for possessing marijuana, provided it is within legal limits. Minnesota does not issue medical marijuana cards, so patients who need to prove their status as medical marijuana patients must carry their registry verifications as well as other government-issued IDs such as driver’s licenses.

Employment Protections

Per Section 12, Subdivision 3 of SF2470, an employer may not discriminate against a person in hiring, termination, or any condition of employment if the discrimination is based on the person’s status as a medical marijuana patient. They may only take disciplinary actions against employees who are medical cannabis patients if accommodating them will cause them to violate federal laws or lose licensing benefits under federal regulations. However, medical marijuana patients in Minnesota are not allowed to use cannabis products in the workplace. Employees who test positive for cannabis in the workplace are protected from penalties, provided they can show proof of enrollment in the Minnesota Medical Marijuana Program.

Lower Prices

Medical cannabis products are exempted from taxes in Minnesota. Although recreational marijuana was legalized in Minnesota in August 2023, the licensing and regulatory process will not be completed until early 2025. A 10% sales tax will be imposed on recreational marijuana transactions when legal sales begin.

Access for Minors

Individuals under the age of 18 can also be enrolled in the medical marijuana program. However, minors can only access medical marijuana with the help of their parents or caregivers.

Downsides of Getting a Medical Cannabis Registry Verification Document in Minnesota

Registered medical marijuana patients in Minnesota face the following disadvantages:

Annual Renewal

Minnesota medical marijuana registrations are renewable annually. Patients must consult their physicians to be recertified before they can apply to renew their registrations in the state’s medical cannabis registry. Most patients find this inconvenient, especially considering the financial implications. Physicians may charge patients between $49 and $149 to recertify them for medical marijuana treatment either in person or via telemedicine services. However, the annual registration renewal fee was waived with effect from August 1, 2023. Beginning in March 2025, patients will only have to be recertified every three years by their physicians.

Firearm Prohibition

Federal law prohibits the sale of guns to unlawful users of controlled substances, including individuals who are registered in the Minnesota Cannabis Registry. Because marijuana is still illegal under federal law, Minnesota medical marijuana patients are subject to the firearms purchase restrictions imposed on marijuana users by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

Driving Restrictions

It is unlawful for Minnesota medical marijuana patients to consume marijuana while driving. Marijuana products must be stored in an enclosed compartment within the vehicle or in the trunk. Minnesota MMJ patients are not eligible to apply for a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) because both federal and state laws prohibit driving while under the influence of marijuana.

Minnesota does not test drivers for THC, the psychoactive compound in marijuana products. Law enforcement officers who suspect that a driver is under the influence of marijuana can charge them with driving while impaired (DWI), even when they are registered patients in the state’s Medical Cannabis Registry. Individuals arrested for the first time for DWI are charged with a misdemeanor. Repeat offenders can face penalties such as the seizure of their license plates or the suspension of their driver's licenses.

Federal Prohibitions

Because marijuana is still classified as a Schedule 1 substance under federal law, it is not possible for Minnesota residents who are MMJ patients to be accepted for federal employment. Federal employees are required to refrain from the use of prohibited substances such as marijuana, even if such substances are legal under state law. Federal employees in Minnesota are prohibited from enrolling in the state's medical marijuana program. Individuals living in federally subsidized housing in the state are prohibited from cultivating or using marijuana at home.

In this section: