What Are Nevada’s Marijuana Laws?

Madeleine Jones
December 11, 2018

Nevada voters recently passed the Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act, effectively legalizing recreational cannabis in Nevada for adults over the age of 21. It is important for all Nevada residents as well as visitors to know the state’s laws concerning cannabis. Although cannabis is effectively legal, regulations in place concern appropriate consumption practices, possession, home growing, and more.

Nevada Marijuana Consumption and Possession Laws

The only way to legally purchase marijuana in Nevada is through a dispensary or state-licensed store. Any customer who wishes to purchase cannabis at such an establishment must have a state-issued photo ID, just like any alcohol purchase. It is also illegal to purchase marijuana on the street or from other private individuals or to provide marijuana to individuals under the age of 21. Any minor caught attempting to purchase cannabis with a fake ID commits a misdemeanor.

Nevada law allows adults over the age of 21 to possess up to one ounce of marijuana or 1/8 ounce of marijuana concentrates. It is legal to consume cannabis, but you may not do so in any public place or in a vehicle, even if you are a passenger. It is still illegal to drive under the influence of marijuana and doing so could lead to DUI charges. Smoking cannabis in a public place or in a vehicle is a misdemeanor punishable by up to $600 in fines.

Growing Cannabis at Home

Nevada allows adults to grow marijuana plants at home for personal consumption, but this privilege only applies to those who live more than 25 miles away from the nearest state-licensed marijuana store or dispensary. To legally grow cannabis at home, an individual must own the property or have the legal owner’s permission. He or she must keep the growing cannabis plants out of view of the public and keep them in a lockable and enclosed space such as a separate room, greenhouse, or closet.

Anyone caught growing cannabis illegally in Nevada, including any person who resides within 25 miles of a state-licensed marijuana store, faces fines and other penalties that increase with subsequent offenses. A first-time offense is a misdemeanor with a $600 fine penalty. A second offense is also a misdemeanor but with a fine up to $1,000. A third violation is a gross misdemeanor and a fourth violation is a category E felony.

Traveling With Cannabis

Some Nevada residents may take trips outside the state, and it is important to remember that Nevada’s cannabis laws only apply within Nevada. It is unwise to travel with any amount of cannabis if you intend to leave the state, especially if you plan to fly. The post-security checkpoint areas of major airports fall under federal jurisdiction, and marijuana is still illegal at the federal level. Attempting to carry cannabis with you through the airport could potentially lead to possession and trafficking charges.

Ultimately, cannabis may be legal in Nevada but traveling with it is not. If you plan to fly, absolutely leave your cannabis at home. If you plan to take a long road trip within Nevada, you can legally take cannabis with you, but it is best to keep it packed with your luggage and not on your person. Even if you do not smoke during the trip, having cannabis on your person in the car may still lead to difficulties with law enforcement should a police officer pull over your vehicle.

Remember, cannabis is still illegal on all federal lands, and this includes military bases, national parks, and federally controlled buildings in Nevada. If you ever have any doubt about whether cannabis is legal to possess or consume in a specific area, consult the state’s laws, and err on the side of caution. Ultimately, storing and consuming cannabis in the privacy of your own home is the safest and most legally sound way to enjoy cannabis responsibly in Nevada.