A significant change in Nevada marijuana law effective on January 1, 2024, makes it a good time to review all the state laws that apply to purchase, possession, and use of recreational marijuana. For Las Vegas visitors and residents, violating any one of the many restrictions can have severe penalties and consequences. If you plan to purchase and use marijuana, be sure you understand the legal limitations.

Marijuana Possession in Las Vegas

Under Nevada law, marijuana is legal for medical and recreational use in the state, subject to certain restrictions and limitations. There are significant penalties for illegal possession, use, sale, cultivation, and delivery of marijuana.

As of January 1, 2024, recreational cannabis laws allow a person over the age of twenty-one (21) years to legally possess up to two and a half (2.5) ounces of marijuana or one-quarter (1/4 or 0.25) of an ounce of THC concentrate. These amounts significantly increase the amount previously allowed. It is illegal for a person over age 21 to give marijuana to anyone under age 21. Giving it to someone under the age of 18 years old is a more serious offense. In addition, any person under the age of 21 years who buys, attempts to buy, or consumes cannabis may face a severe penalty.

Many previous limitations on recreational possession, use, and sale are still in effect, including the fact that only a licensed dispensary can sell marijuana. Unlawful sale and illegal possession with intent to deliver carry severe penalties. Similarly, only licensed dispensaries are allowed to sell marijuana paraphernalia. Violation of any of the restrictions on recreational sale carry significant criminal penalties.

Cultivation of marijuana is also strictly regulated. A person over age 21 without a commercial license may legally grow up to six plants of marijuana at home (12 plants per household) only if the home is more than 25 miles from a licensed dispensary. Cultivation includes planting, harvesting, propagating, processing, drying, and manufacturing. Medical marijuana card holders follow slightly less stringent rules, when certain conditions are met.

Cannabis Use and Consumption

Public use and consumption of marijuana is prohibited, except in a licensed marijuana consumption lounge. It is illegal to use or consume marijuana on a public street or in public buildings, including hotel rooms and casinos, as well as anywhere on federal property (including the airport). The only permissible location (other than a lounge) is on private property.

Neither a driver nor a passenger may use or consume marijuana in a motor vehicle, whether or not the vehicle is moving. It is also illegal to transport any amount of marijuana across state lines.

Driving under the influence of marijuana (DUID) is a serious offense in Nevada. For penalty purposes, DUID is treated the same as DUI involving alcohol. A conviction can have long-term negative consequences far beyond the criminal and administrative penalties.

Finally, possession of a firearm while under the influence of marijuana is a criminal offense. Carrying a gun when you’re high can also result in other criminal charges.

Quick Summary of Las Vegas Marijuana Laws

Here’s a quick summary of the legal rules that apply to recreational marijuana purchase and use in Las Vegas:

  • Purchase marijuana only if you are over 21 years old.
  • Do not give marijuana to anyone under 21 years old.
  • Buy cannabis only from a licensed dispensary.
  • Do not sell marijuana unless you are a licensed dispensary.
  • Use marijuana only on private property or in a licensed lounge, not in a motor vehicle or in public or federal buildings.
  • Do not carry more than two and a half (2.5) ounces of marijuana or one-quarter (1/4 or 0.25) of an ounce of THC concentrate.
  • Do not drive or carry a gun when you are under the influence of marijuana.
  • Do not grow marijuana illegally.
  • Do not take marijuana to the airport or across state lines.
  • If you own a firearm, know the laws that apply to marijuana use and possession.

Talk With a Las Vegas Marijuana Defense Lawyer

It is relatively easy to inadvertently violate one of Nevada’s laws relating to marijuana purchase, possession, and use. If you are arrested in Las Vegas or elsewhere in Clark County on marijuana or other drug charges, having knowledgeable and skilled legal counsel is essential. A drug conviction on your record can have far-reaching and long-range implications on your life, no matter where you live.

Las Vegas criminal defense attorney Joseph Gersten has extensive experience defending Las Vegas visitors and residents facing federal and state criminal charges. If you’ve been arrested in Las Vegas or anywhere else in Clark County, contact Attorney Gersten to schedule a free consultation.