Virginia Marijuana Distribution Laws

What Is Possession With Intent To Distribute Marijuana in Virginia?

Persons caught with marijuana in their possessions may be charged with simple marijuana possession or possession with intent to distribute. If law enforcement have reasons to believe that the amount of marijuana in possession of the offender is intended only for personal use (typically when the amount of marijuana is about half an ounce), then the offender will only be charged with simple possession.

Although the Commonwealth of Virginia does not outline specific elements necessary to establish intent to distribute marijuana, courts may consider the following factors in determining intent to distribute:

  • The absence or presence of paraphernalia associated with personal use
  • The absence or presence of paraphernalia related to the sale or distribution
  • The possession of large or unexplained sums of money
  • The quantity of marijuana in possession of the defendant. Doses beyond what an individual may consume for personal purposes may lead the court to suspect that the defendant plans to distribute the substance

Can You Enter a Dispensary at 18 in Virginia?

No. With recreational weed sales still illegal in Virginia, only medical marijuana patients may purchase marijuana in the state. Also, medical marijuana patients must be 21 or older in order to be permitted inside medical marijuana dispensaries in the state.

Can You Enter a Dispensary Without a Card in Virginia?

There are currently no dispensaries licensed to sell recreational weed in Virginia. Dispensaries may only sell medical marijuana products. To enter a medical marijuana dispensary in Virginia, you must show a medical marijuana identification card, which proves that you are registered under the state’s medical marijuana program and are of legal age (21+).

What Are the Penalties for Possession With Intent To Distribute First Offense in Virginia?

Pursuant to Section 18.2-248.1 of the Virginia Code, it is illegal for an individual to possess with intent to distribute marijuana. The following penalties apply for violators of that section of the state code:

  • Less than 0.5 ounces: This is a Class 1 misdemeanor punishable by up to 12 months imprisonment and a fine of up to $2,500
  • 0.5 ounces to 5 pounds: This is a Class 5 felony punishable by 1 - 10 years imprisonment, $2,500, or both
  • 5 pounds to 100 kg: This is a felony conviction punishable by 5 - 30 years imprisonment and a $10,000 fine
  • More than 100 kg: A felony punished by a 20-year to lifetime imprisonment and/or a $100,000 fine

Note that marijuana possession with intent to distribute more than one ounce of the substance to persons under 18 carries even more severe penalties. The Commonwealth of Virginia considers it a felony charge punishable by five years to a maximum of 50 years imprisonment. Additionally, the judge may levy a $100,000 fine against the defendant

Some factors may increase the penalties ordered by the court, such as:

  • Possession of firearms or other dangerous weapons at the time of the offense
  • Valid threats of violence or actual violence involved with the offense
  • Prior convictions for drug-related offenses

Under federal law, marijuana possession with intent to distribute amounts of up to 50kg is punishable by up to 5 years imprisonment and $250,000 in fines. Marijuana possession with intent to distribute between 50 and 99 kg is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and $1,000,000 in fines under Section 841 of the United States Constitution. The penalty for marijuana amounts between 100 and 999 kg is a maximum 40-year prison sentence and a $5,000,000 fine. If you are found possessing more than 1,000 kg of marijuana with the intent to distribute it, you could face life in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Is It Legal To Sell Weed in Virginia?

No. It is illegal to sell weed in marijuana. Only approved medical marijuana dispensaries currently sell marijuana in the state. The unlicensed sale of marijuana is a felony and is punishable by up to life imprisonment and $100,000 in fines.

How To Sell to Dispensaries in Virginia?

With sales of recreational marijuana currently illegal in Virginia, individuals and businesses cannot sell marijuana supplies to other businesses.

How To Get a Distribution License in Virginia

The Virginia General Assembly has yet to create a framework for creating the adult-use retail market in the state. Hence, no recreational cannabis licenses are currently issued in the state.

In this section: