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West Palm Beach Criminal Lawyer / Blog / Drug Crimes / What Are The Penalties For Growing Marijuana In Florida?

What Are The Penalties For Growing Marijuana In Florida?


As of this writing, the use of marijuana is legal in Florida for those who possess a valid medical card granting them that right. It is not legal to possess, sell, or use recreationally – but in many other states, it is legal for a marijuana user to cultivate a small amount from seeds or cuttings. It is not legal in Florida, nor is it legal to operate a commercial cultivation enterprise without proper licensure. If you have been charged with cultivating marijuana, you are likely facing consequences just as significant as those who sell or traffic the substance.

Take Such Charges Seriously

Florida has some of the strictest drug laws in the United States. Even first-time drug offenders may face serious jail time, and those who willfully cultivate drugs are often seen as committing a crime against society. Cultivating marijuana, even if it is one or two plants intended for personal use, falls under Florida’s law against ‘manufacturing’ controlled substances. The state’s definition is very broad, including not only cultivating, but “production, preparation, packaging, growing, propagating,” and many other steps in the process.

It is important to understand that while you can be charged with marijuana cultivation, the state may also, in some cases, charge you with drug possession – or if the amounts are high enough to qualify under Florida’s Marijuana Grow House Eradication Act, with drug trafficking. Florida law on drug trafficking holds that if you are caught with a large enough amount of a drug, you can be charged with trafficking even if you have no actual intent to sell the substance.

If You Are Charged

If you have been charged with cultivation, be aware that there may also be additional penalties if you live on the premises. Cultivation is usually tried as a third-degree felony, punishable with a 5-year prison term, but it can be upgraded to a second-degree felony if you actually live in the grow house – and if there are minors present at the time of arrest, you are likely to be charged with a first-degree felony, carrying up to 30 years in jail.

This may seem draconian to some people, but Florida’s drug problem is acute – the most recent available data indicates over 6,000 people died from drug overdoses in 2020, with the following year provisionally reporting an increase – and it is important for you to be aware that law enforcement doggedly pursues any and all drug-related offenses. Despite the fact that cannabis has several documented medical uses, Florida still categorizes it as a Schedule I drug, and thus, takes its cultivation seriously.

Contact A West Palm Beach Marijuana Possession Attorney

If you have been charged with cultivating marijuana, it is crucial that you find an experienced West Palm Beach drug crimes attorney to help you with your case. The firm of Perlet & Shiner, P.A. is ready and willing to try and assist you. Call our office today at (561) 721-0552 to speak to an attorney.



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