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What Is Legal Under the Adult Use of Marijuana Act?

Drug laws can be tricky, and marijuana laws always seem to be changing and evolving. With the passage of a voter initiative known as The Adult Use of Marijuana Act (also known as Proposition 64), responsible cannabis use was legalized in the State of California with some limitations.

Whether you live in California or are just passing through, knowing our state’s marijuana laws could help keep you out of trouble. For those who have already been arrested for illegal cannabis use, now is the time to seek legal representation. If you have been arrested for a marijuana-related crime in California, an Aron Law Firm Santa Barbara criminal defense lawyer can provide you with the thoughtful and intelligent legal representation needed to defend your case.

What Tourists and Residents Should Know About Marijuana Legalization in California

Since going into effect, The Adult Use of Marijuana Act has allowed countless Californians to enjoy decreased controls on marijuana. Today, the possession, consumption, and growth of cannabis and its products are significantly less restricted, and those facing certain marijuana-related crimes have benefited from reduced penalties.

Who Can Legally Use Marijuana in California?

The use of marijuana may still be prohibited on the federal level, but The Adult Use of Marijuana Act has made momentous strides in legalizing cannabis for anyone over the age of 21 in California, whether for medical or recreational purposes. Because nobody under the age of 21 is protected by The Adult Use of Marijuana Act, anyone aged 20 or younger may face severe penalties for the use, sale, or possession of cannabis. They may also be required to complete drug education classes or fulfill community service hours.

Where Is Marijuana Use Allowed in California?

Marijuana use is still banned in some places in California. This includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Schools
  • Parks, including National Parks
  • Sidewalks
  • Daycare facilities
  • Buildings open to the public
  • Restaurants
  • Places of employment
  • Youth centers

Under The Adult Use of Marijuana Act, individuals may use cannabis in private residences or at businesses with valid licenses for on-site consumption.

The use of marijuana or having an open container of a marijuana product while driving or riding in a car is also prohibited.

Who Can Sell Marijuana in California?

After going into effect, The Adult Use of Marijuana Act permitted marijuana and its products to become eligible to be taxed by the state. However, anyone wishing to sell marijuana products must hold a valid license and abide by city, county, and state regulations.

Petition for Expungement Under The Adult Use of Marijuana Act in California

The passing of The Adult Use of Marijuana Act also means certain marijuana crimes now qualify for expungement. A California drug crime defense attorney can determine if your drug conviction is eligible. Whether your particular offense qualifies for expungement under The Adult Use of Marijuana Act will depend on the circumstances surrounding your specific situation.

If your offense is authorized to petition for expungement, your lawyer will collect the documents needed and create a petition to present your case to the court. After giving the prosecutor time to respond, your case will be reviewed by a judge. At this time, your legal representative will present your defense and fight to get your charges reduced or expunged.

Fight a Marijuana Charge in California With an Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer

At Aron Law Firm, we dedicate ourselves to providing Californians with the assertive defense strategies they need to fight charges for marijuana-related crimes. If you were arrested for a drug crime in California, it is essential to seek qualified legal counsel as soon as possible so you can better protect your rights.

We understand the effect a single drug charge may have on your freedom, reputation, and opportunities and will exhaust all opportunities to get the result you deserve. To schedule a meeting with an Aron Law Firm criminal defense lawyer today, call (805) 618-1768 or complete our contact form.

Steps to Take After a Drug Probation Violation

In 1972, President Richard Nixon branded drug abuse as public enemy number one. As the United States expands its research and legislation into what the nation terms the “War on Drugs,” there have been increases in drug-related arrests and incarcerations. For example, in 2019, there were 171,000 drug-related incarcerations in the United States. Many more cases have resulted in drug-related probation sentences.

In California, incarceration is not the only punishment available for drug violations. The two main non-jail sentences are probation and conditional discharge. If you have been on drug-related probation before, violating this arrangement may trigger the court to impose a sentence. The following guide covers what you should do after a drug probation violation in California.

What Is a Drug Probation Violation?

Probation is one of the non-jail sentences issued after a drug-related violation. If you;ve been found to have committed a misdemeanor, you may fall into two basic categories: Standard misdemeanors, which punishable by up to 6 months in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000, and

“gross” or “aggravated” misdemeanors,” which are punishable by up to 364 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000 or more. If you have been found to have committed a felony, you may receive 5 years of probation. It is vital to note that these sentences may vary, especially when drug charges are coupled with other serious offenses such as sexual or child abuse.

So, what is probation? Put simply, probation occurs when offenders must regularly report to their assigned probation officers. These supervised programs ensure that community members are protected from a drug offender’s further criminal conduct. Most defendants are required to check in with their probation officer weekly, monthly, or every couple of months.

For your probation to be successful, you must always report to your probation officer as was initially stipulated. Often, defendants are prohibited from drinking, meeting with other criminal defendants, or disobeying their probation officers. For example, as a drug offender, you might be asked to take a drug test by the probation officer. Failure to follow these orders may have dire consequences.

Types of Drug Probation Violations

In California, a probation violation occurs when a defendant is convicted of a crime, given probation, and subsequently violates that probation. California Penal Code 1203.2 PC states these rules apply to the following groups:

“…(1) released on probation under the care of a probation officer pursuant to this chapter, (2) released on conditional sentence or summary probation not under the care of a probation officer, (3) placed on mandatory supervision pursuant to subparagraph (B) of paragraph (5) of subdivision (h) of Section 1170, (4) subject to revocation of post-release community supervision pursuant to Section 3455 PC, or (5) subject to revocation of parole supervision pursuant to Section 3000.08…”

Drug probation violations occur when you fail to follow the basic rules that have been stipulated by the court of law. If you perform a probation violation, the court may issue a new sentence for the new offense. The following are the major drug probation violations:

  • Failing to appear in court: When under probation, you are expected to make regular court appearances so that your progress can be reviewed. A violation may occur if you fail to meet these obligations.
  • Failing a drug test: As can be expected, you cannot fail a drug test when under drug probation. These tests are usually random and commonplace during the probation period.
  • Engaging in criminal activity: When under probation, you should not commit any crime. This scenario may occur with or without your knowledge and may lead to sentence suspicion.
  • Ignoring your probation officer: As earlier stated, your probation officer is tasked with supervising your progress when under probation. The main duties of these officers entail making rehab recommendations, undertaking drug tests, and locating offenders.
  • Leaving the state without permission: While on probation, you cannot leave the state without permission from the probation officer. Not following this rule is considered a probation violation.
  • Not paying for victim restitution: Sometimes, a court may ask you to perform restitution when you have been found guilty of a drug-related felony. Failure to perform this action is a drug probation violation.
  • Holding a firearm: Finally, you are prohibited from holding a firearm when under probation that was issued after a drug-related felony. You may also receive firearm restrictions when you perform misdemeanor crimes, and going against this rule can have dire consequences.

Violating your drug probation can have serious consequences, and a criminal defense lawyer may be necessary to help resolve your violations.

The Process After a Violation of Your Drug Probation

When you violate your probation terms and conditions, the court may initiate the revocation process. Revocations are accompanied by trials or small hearings. During the hearings, probationers can be present, call witnesses to the stand, and work with attorneys. When the court hears a probationer’s violation case, it then determines whether to impose further penalties or revoke the probation altogether.

If you have violated drug probation, the odds are often stacked against you. The prosecutor handling your case only shows that you were more likely than not to violate your probation. They do not have to prove beyond reasonable doubt that you did it. Besides, no jurors are needed during such hearings, putting you at a further disadvantage.

Probationers who have been found guilty of drug probation violations can receive sentences. For example, the court may revert to the initial sentencing that it replaced with probation, ask you to pay a fine, or serve jail time. Other sentences are extended probations or the imposition of new probation terms. The best thing is to contact your criminal lawyer first to take you through the court hearing process regardless of the sentencing.

Contact a California Probation Attorney for Help With Your Probation Violation

When faced with a drug probation case, your best move is to contact your criminal defense lawyer to avoid severe punishment. The length of any potential probation depends on the seriousness of your offense. The major problem with drug probation violations is that they may lead to revocations in courts of law. You should speak to a qualified criminal lawyer to represent you during the hearing process.

At Aron Law Firm, we pride ourselves on being skilled and renowned criminal defense attorneys in California. We have a client-centered approach to our work, and we take time to understand each client’s needs. You can fill out our contact form or call us at (805) 618-1768 for further assistance.