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Illinois passes Cannabis Regulation & Tax Act (Recreational Marijuana Law)

Memorandum And Important Legislative Alert
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On June 25, 2019 Illinois governor J.B Pritzker signed HB 1438 (Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act) into law.  Illinois becomes the 11th state to legalize the recreational use and purchase of marijuana, joining 10 others including the District of Columbia.  The effective date for this law is January 1, 2020.

Under the new law Illinois residents 21 and older, will be allowed to possess up to 30 grams of cannabis flower, 5 grams of cannabis concentrate, and 500 milligrams of THC in a cannabis-infused product such as edibles.  Non-Illinois residents 21 and older, will be allowed to possess 15 grams of cannabis flower, 2.5 grams of cannabis concentrate, and no more than 250 milligrams of THC contained in a cannabis-infused product.

The new law will also allow for the automatic expungement of criminal records of individual that resulted from the purchase or possession of 30 grams or less of marijuana.

Nothing in the law will prohibit employers from adopting reasonable zero tolerance or drug free workplace policies, or employment policies concerning drug testing, smoking, consumption, storage or use of cannabis in the workplace or on call provided that the policy is applied in a non-discriminatory manner. And nothing in the law will limit or prohibit an employer from disciplining and employee or terminating employment of an employee for violating the employer’s employment policy or drug free workplace policy.

Specifically, the law states:

Section 10-5. Personal use of cannabis

(a) Beginning January 1, 2020, notwithstanding any other provision of law, and except as otherwise provided in this Act, the following acts are not a violation of this Act and shall not be a criminal or civil offense under State law or the ordinances of any unit of local government of this State or be a basis for seizure or forfeiture of assets under State law for persons other than natural individuals under 21 years of age:

  • possession, consumption, use, purchase, obtaining, or transporting an amount of cannabis for personal use that does not exceed the possession limit under Section 10-10 or otherwise in accordance with the requirements of this Act;
  • cultivation of cannabis for personal use in accordance with the requirements of this Act; and
  • controlling property if actions that are authorized by this Act occur on the property in accordance with this Act.

Section 10-10. Possession limit.

(a) Except if otherwise authorized by this Act, for a person who is 21 years of age or older and a resident of this State, the possession limit is as follows:

  • 30 grams of cannabis flower;
  • no more than 500 milligrams of THC contained in cannabis-infused product;
  • 5 grams of cannabis concentrate; and
  • for registered qualifying patients, any cannabis produced by cannabis plants grown under subsection (b) of Section 10-5, provided any amount of cannabis produced in excess of 30 grams of raw cannabis or its equivalent must remain secured within the residence or residential property in which it was grown.

(b) For a person who is 21 years of age or older and who is not a resident of this State, the possession limit is:

  • 15 grams of cannabis flower;
  • 5 grams of cannabis concentrate; and
  • 250 milligrams of THC contained in a cannabis-infused product.

Section 10-50. Employment; employer liability

(a) Nothing in this Act shall prohibit an employer from adopting reasonable zero tolerance or drug free workplace policies, or employment policies concerning drug testing, smoking, consumption, storage, or use of cannabis in the workplace or while on call provided that the policy is applied in a nondiscriminatory manner.

(b) Nothing in this Act shall require an employer to permit an employee to be under the influence of or use cannabis in the employer’s workplace or while performing the employee’s job duties or while on call.

(c) Nothing in this Act shall limit or prevent an employer from disciplining an employee or terminating employment of an employee for violating an employer’s employment policies or workplace drug policy.

Section 900-12. The Criminal Identification Act is amended by changing Section 5.2 as follows:

 

Sec. 5.2. Expungement, sealing, and immediate sealing.

(2.5) Commencing 180 days after July 29, 2016 (the effective date of Public Act 99-697), the law enforcement agency issuing the citation shall automatically expunge, on or before January 1 and July 1 of each year, the law enforcement records of a person found to have committed a civil law violation of subsection (a) of Section 4 of the Cannabis Control Act or subsection (c) of Section 3.5 of the Drug Paraphernalia Control Act in the law enforcement agency’s possession or control and which contains the final satisfactory disposition which pertain to the person issued a citation for that offense. 

Commencing 180 days after July 29, 2016 (the effective date of Public Act 99-697), the clerk of the circuit court shall expunge, upon order of the court, or in the absence of a court order on or before January 1 and July 1 of each year, the court records of a person found in the circuit court to have committed a civil law violation of subsection (a) of Section 4 of the Cannabis Control Act or subsection (c) of Section 3.5 of the Drug Paraphernalia Control Act in the clerk’s possession or control and which contains the final satisfactory disposition which pertain to the person.

Link to the Illinois Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act: Illinois Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act

 Thank you for your business.

The foregoing information is not offered as legal advice but is instead offered for informational purposes. First Advantage Corporation is not a law firm and does not offer legal advice and this communication does not form an attorney client relationship.

The foregoing information is therefore not intended as a substitute for the legal advice of a lawyer knowledgeable of the user’s individual circumstances or to provide legal advice. First Advantage Corporation makes no assurances regarding the accuracy, completeness, currency or utility of the above information. Legislative, regulatory and case law developments regularly impact on general research and this area is evolving rapidly.

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