Possession of One Ounce or Less of Marijuana

In 2008, the Massachusetts State Legislature decriminalized and enacted civil penalties for persons found to be in possession of 1 ounce or less of marijuana.

Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 94, Section 32L mandates that possession of 1 ounce or less of marijuana shall be a civil offense, which subjects offenders 18 or over to a civil penalty of $100 and forfeiture of the marijuana (without any other form of criminal or civil punishment or disqualification).

Offenders of Possession of One Ounce or Less of Marijuana who are under the age of 18 are subject to the same $100 civil penalty and forfeiture, but must also complete a Drug Awareness Program and at least 10 hours of community service within 1 year of the date of offense.  Additionally, the parents or legal guardian must also be notified and apprised of the Drug Awareness Program requirement.

The failure of an offender who is under the age of 18 to complete both the Drug Awareness Program and Community Service requirements could serve as a basis for delinquency proceedings for those offenders.

By statute, the civil offense of Possession of One Ounce or Less of Marijuana shall not provide the Commonwealth or any agency with a basis to deny an offender student financial aid, public housing or any form of public financial assistance, including unemployment benefits.  The Commonwealth of Massachusetts may not also disqualify the offender from serving as a foster or adoptive parent; and the Department of Motor Vehicle may not deny him/her the right to operate a motor vehicle.

Boston Drug Crimes Lawyer Lefteris K. Travayiakis has extensive experience in representing persons accused of various Drug Crimes, including Possession, Possession with Intent to Distribute, and Trafficking.

To schedule a Free Consultation with a Boston Drug Crimes Lawyer, Contact Us Online or call 617-325-9500.