CBD oil is currently taking Texas by storm. Many people swear by this product to help manage the symptoms of many different diseases and ailments. However, CBD oil is made from the cannabis plant, so it could potentially contain THC, which would make the oil a banned substance.
Buyer beware! The state needs more manufacturing and testing standards for medicinal cannabis products. It needs more oversight of the industry as well. Until then, buyers should know the legal risks they face by purchasing this product.
What is CBD Oil?
CBD is short for cannabidiol, which is one of several dozen cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. CBD oil has high concentrations of cannabidiol, though it might also contain very small amounts of Tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. THC is the chemical that creates the psychological high people feel when smoking marijuana. CBD does not result in any high.
What is CBD Oil Used For?
Many people have used this oil to treat a range of physical ailments, including:
- Chronic pain
- Sleep disorders
- High blood pressure
- Epilepsy and seizures
Why Might CBD Oil be Illegal?
The legal status of CBD oil is unclear at the present moment. Currently, federal law allows hemp and hemp plant derivatives so long as they have under 0.3% THC. It is no longer illegal to grow and possess hemp plants or derivatives so long as the THC concentration is below that limit.
However, some CBD oil can have THC levels above 0.3%. Furthermore, Texas allows people with intractable epilepsy to use CBD oil to treat seizures. This law was passed in 2015 and went into effect in 2017. Under the law, only a qualified medical professional can write a prescription, and patients must obtain their CBD Oil from a licensed dispensary. Because the law did not legalize CBD oils to treat all conditions, an argument can be made that it is currently illegal to possess CBD oil without a prescription.
But what if you want to use CBD oil for something else without a prescription? In this case, you could be prosecuted for CBD Oil as a Penalty Group 2 drug if the CBD oil has any THC in it. Some prosecutors in Texas have begun bringing these cases.
What are Penalties for a Substance Penalty Group 2 Violation?
Punishment will vary depending on the amount you are caught with:
- Less than one gram: a state felony punishable by 180 days to 2 years in state jail or a fine up to $10,000, or both
- 1 gram but less than 4 grams: a third-degree felony punishable by 2-10 years in state prison or a fine of $10,000, or both
- 4 grams but less than 400 grams: a second-degree felony punishable by 2-20 years in state prison or a fine of $10,000, or both
- 400 or more grams: an enhanced first-degree felony punishable by up to 99 years in prison or a $50,000 fine, or both
Felonies also carry other collateral consequences, such as losing your right to vote and the ability to own a firearm. Criminal convictions also show up in background checks, which might interfere with your ability to rent an apartment or get hired for a job.
Buying CBD Oil in Collin County – What Should Consumers Do?
If a doctor has prescribed CBD oil, then you should get the drug from one of the three state-approved dispensaries. Buying from someone else could be illegal—regardless of what you are reading online. Many CBD oil manufacturers maintain websites that do not contain accurate legal information, all in an attempt to hype their product.
If you want to use CBD oil without a prescription, then you need to be careful about where you buy from. If the oil ends having too much THC in it, then you can be prosecuted for a felony. Look for products that emphasize they are made from industrial hemp and do not contain any THC. Of course, they still might—so you are running a risk.
Reach Out to a Criminal Defense Lawyer in Collin County
As Texas continues to grapple with the implications of medical marijuana, our state’s laws will remain muddled. For this reason, consumers should be empowered to make smart decisions when they are in the market for buying the product.
If you have failed a drug test, or if the police have come knocking on your door, you will need an experienced criminal defense attorney. At Rosenthal & Wadas, PLLC, our experienced Collin County criminal defense lawyers can help. We can make a compelling argument for why your charges should be dismissed or reduced, and we can plot to win the case before a judge, if necessary.
All you need to do is reach out to us today. Please call 972-200-9395.