Attorney Ray Richards, Detroit Michigan Medical Marijuana Lawyer

Medical marijuana: know your rights and responsibilities

Marijuana laws are rapidly changing and social acceptance for medical marijuana continues to grow. Many patients in need of medical marijuana have moved to states with more tolerant laws so they can use their medicine without fear of arrest. An unfortunate encounter with hostile law enforcement can be a life changing experience. Good people have lost jobs, been put in jail, lost their kids, and been subject to unnecessary ridicule for their choice to relieve their medical symptoms by using marijuana.

The first key to be able to calm your anxiety and/or fears of using medical marijuana is to know your rights! The best way to avoid run-ins with law enforcement while using medical marijuana is to know your rights. Your right to possess, cultivate, or use marijuana varies wildly depending on where you are located.

In Michigan, you have the right to use marijuana as long as you meet and follow the rules and guidelines. Even when medical use is permitted, as it is in the State of Michigan, you should be prepared to handle encounters with law enforcement. To be a medical marijuana user, patient and/or caregiver, you must be smart.

Many arrests for marijuana possession are due to traffic violations and noise complaints. So here are some tips to navigate the world of the ensnaring entrapment of medical marijuana prosecutions.

  1. Travel safely. Do not smoke and drive. If you travel with marijuana, make sure your vehicle is up to code and your marijuana is concealed, preferably in your trunk.
  2. Be prepared. Carry your doctor’s recommendation and State issued medical marijuana card at all times, but do not present it to law enforcement unless accused of a marijuana-related crime.
  3. Be discreet. Try not to smoke where others can see you and never leave marijuana items in plain view. Exercise your rights.

If encountered by a police officer, there are three levels of police interaction and three safe ways to handle such encounter.

  1. Casual conversation. If the law enforcement officer engages you in casual conversation, ask if you are being detained. If not, walk away.
  2. Detention. If you’re being detained, calmly and respectfully ask why. Make them cite or strongly suggest that they cite the law and remember what they say.
  3. Arrest. Say “I choose to remain silent and want to speak to a lawyer.” Remember to remain silent at all costs!

Be Safe not Sorry! Some General principles of being a caregiver or patient…

Many patients have experiences with the law because they’ve failed to adhere to some basic safety principles.

  1. Avoid telling people about your private use or medical marijuana cultivation. Often people are detected or turned over to law enforcement by others after they’ve bragged about their marijuana garden to a person who told another person and so on. You can remain safe by not disclosing your marijuana use, possession, or cultivation.
  2. Never use marijuana and put yourself in a dangerous situation, such as operating heavy or dangerous machinery. Legal issues can arise for both patient and caregiver if medical marijuana is used irresponsibly. Here in the State of Michigan, law enforcement officers are being trained to detect those who are under the influence of alcohol and/or marijuana. The best way to avoid a prosecution of the same is just to not drive while smoking or smoke marijuana while a car is moving and/or stationary.
  3. Never steal electricity when cultivating.
  4. Growers must not overload electrical circuits. It is unwise and unsafe because it can cause a fire. Make sure all wiring is up to code. Always be safe, not sorry.

Medical marijuana defense and representation

We represent individuals, causes and corporations in this ever changing and revolving industry known as the medical marijuana movement. We specialize in assisting clients to successfully navigate and staying current navigating and staying current and in compliance with the Michigan Marijuana State Law in this area. The powers that be against this humane movement make their presence felt in and through criminal prosecution in law enforcement “presence.” We defend and share with our clients the most recent medical marijuana updates and information available to make sure their rights and liberties are protected. We represent

  1. Caregivers – charged with violating regulations and state statutes in regards to the care of their patients and/or transport of medical marijuana medicine to patients.
  2. Patients – charged with violating regulatory and criminal statutes in regards to possession, use and transport of medicine.
  3. Dispensaries – charged with criminal and regulatory violations, those who face seizure and forfeiture actions due to State and Federal raids.
  4. Advocate Groups – charged with aiding and abetting illegal entities and individuals.
  5. Grow House Operations ‑ charged with violating government regulations and criminal statutes, victims of illegal and harassing drug raids or subjects of Federal indictments due to the amount grown and alleged amounts distributed.
  6. Venture Capitalists, Investors and Entrepreneurs – who desire to invest in and get involved in this “growth” industry.
  7. Medical professionals and staff who are the subject of federal and state prosecution, investigation and seizure or forfeiture raids.

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