Alaska Marijuana Laws

Residents of Alaska have let their support of cannabis be known for decades. And today, cannabis laws in Alaska allow adult-use. The state first legalized medical marijuna in 1998, though for many years there was no way for patients to legally purchase it

Alaska was second in the U.S. to decriminalize possession of up to four ounces, and the third to legalize recreational marijuana. Residents over 21 years old with a valid state ID can legally grow up to six plants at home, and purchase up to one ounce of marijuana or 7 grams of concentrates from regulated dispensaries. Only cash is accepted.

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Adult marijuana use is completely legal in Alaska, for both medicinal and recreational purposes. It can be purchased from licensed dispensaries across the state, and adults are permitted to cultivate their own cannabis at home.

Simple Possession

Alaska marijuana law allows residents and visitors 21 years and older to buy marijuana, use it on private property, and give it to others in small amounts. Possession of up to an ounce is legal for adults over 21.

Possession of between 1 and 4 ounces is allowed at home under court rulings but not under Ballot Measure 2, the law that legalized marijuana. Possession of between 1 and 4 ounces in public is a misdemeanor with maximum a penalty of 1 year in jail and $10,000 in fines.

Possession of more than 4 ounces is a felony with a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison and $50,000 in criminal fines. Possession of any amount within 500 feet of a school or recreation center carries a penalty of up to 5 years in prison and up to $50,000 in fines. However, defendants accused of possession in a school zone may raise an affirmative defence at trial if the marijuana was kept entirely within a private home.

Public consumption remains a civil offense and carries a $100 fine.

Offense Penalty Incarceration Max. Fine
Personal Use
1 oz or less None None $ 0
1 – 4 oz in your residence* Not classified N/A $ 0
1 – 4 oz Misdemeanor 1 year $ 10,000
4 oz or more Felony 5 years $ 50,000
Any amount within 500 feet of school grounds or rec. center** Felony 5 years $ 50,000
Public consumption Violation None $ 100
* Based on an Alaskan Supreme Court decision, possession in the home for personal use is protected conduct by the right-to-privacy provision in their state constitution.
** If charged with possession of marijuana in a school zone, an affirmative defense may be raised in court that the conduct took place entirely within a private residence.

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Possession with Intent to Distribute

Possession of marijuana with intent to distribute it is a crime unless it occurs within the state’s regulated retail system.

Possession of less than an ounce with intent to distribute is a misdemeanor, subject to up to a year in jail and $10,000 in fines. Possession of one ounce or more with intent to distribute is a felony, punishable by up to 5 years in prison and fines of up to $50,000.

Offense Penalty Incarceration Max. Fine
Possession With Intent to Distribute
Less than 1 oz Misdemeanor 1 year $ 10,000
1 oz or more Felony 5 years $ 50,000

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Sale or Distribution

Sale or distribution of cannabis is a crime unless it occurs within the state’s regulated retail system.

Sale or distribution of less than an ounce is a misdemeanor, and the maximum penalty is 1 year in jail and $10,000 in fines. Sale or distribution of 1 ounce or more is a felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison and $50,000 in fines. Sale or distribution to a person under age 19 is a felony with a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and $100,000 in fines, unless the seller is no more than 3 years older than the minor.

Offense Penalty Incarceration Max. Fine
Less than 1 oz Misdemeanor 1 year $ 10,000
1 oz or more Felony 5 years $ 50,000
To a person under 19 who is 3 years or more younger than the seller. Felony 10 years $ 100,000

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Cultivation

Alaska marijuana laws allow residents to legally grow up to 6 plants at home, with no more than 3 of them mature at any given time. Growing between 6 and 25 plants is in a legal gray area; although not explicitly permitted, an Alaskan Supreme Court ruling dictates that possession at home for personal consumption is protected conduct by the right-to-privacy provision in the state’s constitution.

Cannabis grown at home must be cultivated in a location that is not visible to the public without the use of optic aids such as binoculars or aircraft. It’s required that you take reasonable precautions to ensure plants are secure from unauthorized access, and cultivation may only occur on property lawfully owned by the cultivator, or with consent from the property’s lawful owner.

Cultivation of 25 or more plants is a felony with a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison and $1,000 in fines. Growing marijuana for a person under age 19 is a felony punishable by as many as 10 years in prison and fines of up to $100,000, unless the grower is less than 3 years older than the minor.

Offense Penalty Incarceration Max. Fine
Up to 6 plants (no more than 3 mature) None None $ 0
6 – 25 plants in your residence* Not classified N/A $ 0
25 plants or more Felony 5 years $ 1,000
To a person under 19 who is 3 years or more younger than the seller. Felony 10 years $ 100,000
* Based on an Alaskan Supreme Court decision, possession in the home for personal use is protected conduct by the right-to-privacy provision in their state constitution.

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Hash and Concentrates

Adults 21 and older are able to purchase up to 7 grams of concentrates from state-licensed facilities.

Distribution, manufacture, or possession with intent to distribute any amount of concentrate or hash is a felony punishable by between 1 and 3 years in prison, plus a maximum fine of $100,000.

Offense Penalty Incarceration Max. Fine
Delivery, manufacture, or possessing with intent to distribute any amount Felony 1 – 3 years $ 100,000

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Paraphernalia

Alaska does not have any laws punishing the possession, sale or manufacture of paraphernalia.

Miscellaneous

Vehicles and other assets can be seized in a civil proceeding, regardless of whether criminal charges are brought.

Offense Penalty Incarceration Max. Fine
If under 1 ounce of marijuana is gifted No Liability None $ 0
Offense within owned structure Felony 5 years $ 500,000
Administrative revocation of license to drive for consumption or possession

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Medical Marijuana

MEDICAL MARIJUANA

Medical marijuana was approved by ballot initiative in Alaska Nov. 3, 1998 by 58% of voters. State-level criminal penalties have been removed for patients who use, possess and cultivate marijuana with a written recommendation from their physician advising they “might benefit from the medical use of marijuana.”

QUALIFYING CONDITIONS:
Cachexia, Cancer, Chronic Pain, Glaucoma, HIV/AIDS, Multiple Sclerosis, Nausea and Seizures

PATIENT POSSESSION LIMITS:
One ounce of usable marijuana

HOME CULTIVATION:
Yes, six plants allowed, with no more than three mature at any one time

STATE-LICENSED DISPENSARIES:
No

CAREGIVERS:
Yes. In order to qualify as a caregiver for a patient, a person must be at least 21 years of age and have never been convicted of a felony. Caregivers must be listed by the patient as either the primary caregiver or an alternate caregiver, and a patient may only list one primary caregiver and one alternate caregiver in the registry. Caregivers may only care for one patient at a time, unless multiple patients are related to the caregiver by at least the fourth degree of kinship by blood or marriage.

RECIPROCITY:
No

Marijuana Attorney Directory

Alaska Marijuana Attorneys

The following Alaska lawyers are actively involved in the practice of cannabis law: