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How to get a medical marijuana card in NY

Medical cannabis had been legal in New York since 2014, but to purchase it you will need to have a state-issued medical marijuana card. Want to learn more about this process? Read on and we’ll explain everything you need to know, including the steps it takes to get your card. [Source]

New York medical marijuana laws and regulations

New York’s medicinal marijuana laws and regulations cover a broad number of topics: the possession of marijuana products, the types of products legally permitted for sale, the transport of cannabis, where it is legal to consume or use these products, and what qualifies an individual as a certified patient are all covered by the state’s laws. If you’re interested in obtaining a card, it’s a good idea to get familiar with these regulations first so you’ll feel more comfortable.

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How to get a medical marijuana card in New York

Ready to dive into the process? In order to get a medical marijuana card in NY, you’ll first need to become a certified patient and apply for a card before you’ll be able to purchase medical marijuana. We’ll walk you through the steps in detail below.

How to apply for a medical marijuana card in NY

First, you’ll need to find a practitioner registered with the Medical Marijuana Program within the state. During your appointment, your registered practitioner will discuss your medical condition with you, determine if your condition qualifies for certification, and evaluate whether you would benefit from having access to medical marijuana. If all these are a go, your practitioner will certify you as a patient eligible for participation in the New York Medical Marijuana Program.

How to register

Once you are a certified patient, you’ll want to create an account on my.ny.gov. If you already have an account, you can sign in here. Once you are logged in, you’ll want to select the “Health Applications” icon, then navigate to the link that says “Medical Marijuana Data Management System” to begin the registration process.

New York’s Compassionate Care Act requires a $50 application fee for registration. However, the fee can be waived in cases of financial hardship.

What documents are required?

Once you begin the registration process, you’ll need to submit the required documents that are specified by the state. These documents include:

  • A signed certification from a registered practitioner in New York state
  • A photo ID
  • Proof of residency within the state of New York
  • A birth certificate (this applies to New York patients under the age of 18)

How long does it take to get a medical marijuana card?

Once you have successfully registered, the state will provide you with a temporary medical marijuana card. This card is available online and can be accessed and printed from within your account. Your temporary card will remain valid for up to 30 days. Your official medical marijuana card should arrive in the mail anywhere from seven to ten days after your registration is complete and you have been approved. This card is valid for up to 12 months.

Qualifying conditions

The state of New York has a specific list of medical conditions that must be present in a patient to grant that individual a medical marijuana card. Importantly, a qualifying medical condition must also be accompanied by at least one associated or complicating condition. The first list laid out below outlines the debilitating medical conditions that can qualify an individual for a NY medical marijuana card:

  • Cancer
  • Epilepsy
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
  • Huntington’s disease
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Lou Gehrig’s disease
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Neuropathies
  • Spinal cord injury with spasticity
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Chronic pain

The following list outlines what the state refers to as associated or complicating conditions. An individual must experience one or more of the following, in addition to their debilitating condition from the list above, in order to qualify for an NYS medical marijuana card:

  • Cachexia or wasting syndrome
  • Severe or chronic pain
  • Severe nausea
  • Seizures
  • Severe or persistent muscle spasms
  • PTSD
  • Opioid use disorder

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Can I go to a dispensary without a card in New York?

You’ll need a card to legally purchase medical marijuana products at New York dispensaries as of right now.

How do I renew a medical card online in New York?

Once you are registered for a NY medical marijuana card, your registration will last up to 12 months. At the end of this 12-month period, you’ll need to renew your card in order to continue purchasing medical marijuana in the state. To do this, you have a couple of options.

First, you can reapply, following all the steps laid out above, which includes visiting a registered practitioner to redetermine whether you still qualify.

Another option is to use a third-party web application to handle the renewal process online. Third-party applications can send your medical information to a registered practitioner for review without ever requiring you to leave home.

Who qualifies as a caregiver in the state of New York?

Once a patient is registered and approved by the state of New York, their caregiver(s) will need to register as well in order to qualify as a designated caregiver. Individuals must also be at least 21 years old. Designated caregivers must meet one of the following qualifications:

  • They are a parent or legal guardian of a certified patient
  • They are designated by a parent or legal guardian as a caregiver
  • They are approved by the state after demonstrating that no parent or legal guardian is appropriate or available

How many caregivers can I have?

A certified patient can have up to two designated caregivers at one time. Designated caregivers can serve no more than five medical patients at a time.

How can a caregiver help me?

A designated caregiver who is registered with the state can possess, acquire or purchase, deliver, transfer, transport and administer medical marijuana products on behalf of qualified patients.

Where can I legally buy medical marijuana in New York?

New York state allows certified patients to purchase medical marijuana at any licensed dispensing facility within the state. You must have your certification card and registry ID with you at the time of purchase.

How can I Join the RISE New York medical marijuana community?

A great way to stay involved with RISE dispensaries in New York is to become a member. You can also stay up to date with the community by following our Instagram or Facebook accounts.

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FAQ

Is marijuana legal for medical use in NY?

Yes. Medical marijuana is legal in New York.

What forms and dosage amounts of medical marijuana are allowed?

A wide variety of forms of cannabis are available in New York. These include:

  • Whole flower
  • Ground flower for vaping
  • Consumables (a category similar to cannabis edibles)
  • Topicals
  • Tinctures
  • Vapes

In general, the state of New York allows the purchase and possession of up to 3 ounces of cannabis. Qualified patients can purchase a 60-day supply of products, which falls within their physician-set medical limitation.

Can I get a medical card for anxiety in New York?

Anxiety is not a qualifying condition for a medical card in New York currently. However, a recent law may open up the possibility for registered practitioners to use their discretion when approving patients for conditions like anxiety.

Does NY Medicaid cover medical marijuana?

NY Medicaid does not cover medical marijuana products but may reimburse patients for registered practitioner office visits, evaluations and certifications. [Source]

How easy is it to get a medical card in NYS?

There are some barriers that may make it difficult to get a medical card in NY, depending on your circumstances—for example, having a condition not listed on the qualifying conditions list. Otherwise, the process to get a medical marijuana card in New York is relatively easy in that it only requires taking a few steps.

Does New York State recognize out-of-state medical cards?

No. New York dispensaries do not currently accept out-of-state medical cards.

Who is eligible to become a medical cannabis patient in NY?

Anyone with a qualifying condition is eligible to become a cannabis patient in NY. Minors must have parental or guardian consent.

Who are medical cannabis caregivers?

A caregiver is anyone who is registered with the state to administer, store or purchase cannabis on behalf of their patients.

Can I get fired for having a medical card in NY?

According to the New York Labor Law Section 201-D, an employer cannot fire, refuse to hire, or otherwise discriminate against an employee based on the legal use of cannabis unless it impairs the work process.

Can you get a medical marijuana card online in NY?

Yes. Once you have become a certified patient with the state of New York, you can register for a medical card online. Your temporary card will be available online, while your permanent card will come in the mail.

What is the limit for medical marijuana in NY?

A patient may purchase up to 60 days’ worth of medical marijuana at a time in NY.

Can I use my NY medical card in another state?

No. Most states that have legalized medical marijuana will not accept medical cards from out of state, although there are some exceptions. States that accept out-of-state cards are:


Note: Please visit the official state MMJ program site and/or contact their MMJ programs office to make sure your card will be accepted.

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