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How much marijuana can you legally drive with in your car in Michigan?

Marijuana on a scale
Marijuana on a scale (Pixlr)

DETROIT – We get a lot of questions about Michigan’s marijuana laws through our 4YI form, where you can ask us anything about Michigan and/or Metro Detroit and we will do our best to return with the answer(s).

For instance, we’ve done our best to answer questions about legally growing marijuana at home -- see that here. Now that marijuana is being sold legally in the state, we’re seeing a lot of questions about how much you can buy at once and how much you are allowed to drive around with in your car.

Question:

"If I’m on the way home from buying (marijuana), how much can I legally have in my trunk? I often buy from several favorite shops in Ann Arbor and am curious!” -- Anonymous

Answer:

The answer is no more than 2.5 ounces of marijuana. If you are at least 21 years old in Michigan, you are allowed to have up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana (not more than 15 grams of marijuana may be in the form of a marijuana concentrate, such as edibles) in your vehicle. It doesn’t matter if it’s in your trunk or not, although you probably want to keep it somewhere concealed. The trunk is not a bad idea.

As for what police might be looking for if they pull you over, this is straight from Michigan State Police:

  • Drivers cannot operate, navigate, or be in physical control of any motor vehicle, aircraft, snowmobile, off-road recreational vehicle, or motorboat while under the influence of marijuana.
  • Drivers cannot consume marijuana while operating, navigating, or being in physical control of any motor vehicle, aircraft, snowmobile, off-road recreational vehicle, or motorboat. Drivers and/or their passengers are prohibited from smoking marijuana within the passenger area of a vehicle upon a public way.
  • Drivers and passengers cannot transport marijuana into Canada (against federal law).
  • Police officers will be looking for impairment based on driving, personal observations of the driver, and how a driver performs on standardized and/or nonstandardized field sobriety tests. Based on these three stages of an investigation, a police officer may request a chemical test. If a driver refuses to submit to a chemical test, his/her license will be suspended pursuant to Michigan’s implied consent law. Under this law, all drivers are considered to have given consent to the test when they apply for and renew their driver’s license.
  • The penalties for operating under the influence of marijuana are the same as operating under the influence of alcohol. These penalties can include up to 93 days in jail, up to a $500 fine, license suspension, six points on a person’s driving record, and more. There are heightened penalties if a driver has minors in the vehicle.

Businesses can’t sell you more than 2.5 ounces at one time

If you’re buying marijuana from a licensed shop, you should know Michigan law actually prohibits that shop from selling you more than 2.5 ounces of marijuana in a single transaction.

“A marijuana retailer is prohibited from making a sale or transferring marijuana to an adult 21 years of age or older in a single transaction that exceeds 2.5 ounces, except that not more than 15 grams of marijuana may be in the form of marijuana concentrate,” reads the law.


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