CONSULTATION FEE RANGE
MMJ PURCHASING LIMITS
- 3 OUNCES OF USABLE MARIJUANA EVERY 14 DAYS; 6 OUNCES PER MONTH
MINIMUM AGE LIMIT
Although recreational marijuana is now legal in Delaware, sales won’t begin for some time. Therefore, attaining the Delaware medical card remains the only way residents can legally buy, use, and possess marijuana.
After several failed attempts to legalize recreational marijuana, the breakthrough came in April 2023 despite opposition from Governor John Carney.
However, with sales unlikely to occur until late 2024 at the earliest, Delaware’s medical marijuana program will retain its importance. Those who obtain a valid MMJ identification card can purchase, possess, and use marijuana. The state has had an MMJ program since 2011, which has gradually expanded. Since the state’s program is well-established, there are clear application guidelines.
Keep reading to find out how to apply for an MMJ card in Delaware. We also answer FAQs and outline the penalties for using weed without the protection of a medical card.
Delaware Medical Marijuana Laws
The possession of less than an ounce of cannabis had already been decriminalized before recreational legalization came into play. Now, it is legal for any adult aged 21+ to possess up to an ounce.
However, possessing more than an ounce but less than 175 grams is a misdemeanor. If convicted, you could receive a three-month prison sentence. More than 175 grams, and you’re crossing the line into felony territory. There is a potential prison sentence of up to two years if convicted.
The illegal cultivation or sale of any amount of marijuana in Delaware is a felony carrying a potential prison term of up to eight years.
Therefore, those who wish to use MMJ in Delaware should begin the application process ASAP.
How to Get a Medical Marijuana Card in Delaware
First of all, only those diagnosed with a qualifying medical condition can apply. Furthermore, you must provide proof in your medical records. The next steps if you want to apply for a medical marijuana card in Delaware include:
- Having a state-licensed physician complete the 2-page Physician Certification Form on your behalf. It is part of the 5-page Medical Marijuana Patient Application packet.
- Completing the remainder of the Medical Marijuana Patient Application packet.
- Paying the application fee.
- Including proof of age and residency.
- Mailing the completed application to the appropriate address (see below) or completing the application online.
Without further ado, here are the steps to apply for a medical marijuana card in Delaware.
Step 1 – Get in Touch with a DE Healthcare Provider
The first step toward getting an MMJ card in Delaware is to contact a doctor regarding the completion of the application packet’s Physician Certification form. The doctor you choose must be licensed to practice in the state and be either an MD, DO, APRN, or PA.
Step 2 – Schedule a Consultation
Not every primary care physician will fill out the form. This is the case even if you have medical documentation of a qualifying condition. Physicians are under no obligation to recommend marijuana to their patients.
Is your PCP unwilling to complete the form? Never fear; cannabis-friendly doctors in Delaware are willing to look over your medical history. They will sign the recommendation on your behalf if you are eligible.
A physician may only recommend marijuana if they have completed a full assessment of your medical history.
Step 3 – Complete the Delaware MMJ Card Application Form & Apply
Has your doctor filled out the Physician Certification form on your behalf? If so, you must complete the rest of the application packet. It contains two pages of demographic/employment information and a Medical Release Form that you must sign and initial.
*Note that you MUST apply within 90 days of the physician’s signature.
You can find the official state application (including all three forms – the Physician Certification Form, the Patient Application, and the Medical Release Form) on the official government website.
Step 4 – Register with the official DE Medical Marijuana Program
Once you complete the application packet, submit it (along with the application fee) to:
Delaware Division of Public Health
Medical Marijuana Program
ATTN: MMP, Suite 140
417 Federal Street Dover
You can fill out the application and apply online. However, the Division does not accept faxed and electronic submissions of applications. Under certain circumstances, the Division may waive the application fee. You can check whether or not you qualify for a fee waiver by accessing the requisite form.
If anything is missing or incomplete, the department will return the form to you with instructions for resubmission. If it rejects your request, you must wait a minimum of six months before you can reapply.
Step 5 – Visit a Dispensary
Once you receive your MMJ card, you’re free to visit a licensed dispensary within the state.
Who Can Apply for a Medical Marijuana Card in DE?
To apply for a medical marijuana card in DE, you must be a state resident and have lived there for a minimum of 30 days. You must also be 18+ to apply without the help of a parent or guardian.
Cost of MMJ card in DE
The medical marijuana card cost in DE is $50, and the card lasts for a year. The consultation cost varies but is usually between $125 and $200.
DE MMJ Card Qualifying Conditions
Senate Bill 17 made marijuana legal for medicinal use in Delaware. Under its terms, you needed written certification from a physician. They had to state that you could “benefit from the therapeutic use of medicinal marijuana.” At the time, these were the DE medical marijuana card qualifying conditions:
- Any terminal illness
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Decompensated cirrhosis
- Conditions that cause severe pain
- Autism that leads to aggressive or self-injurious behavior
- Wasting syndrome
- Intractable nausea and seizures
- Chronic debilitating migraine
At least, that was the case until the introduction of SB 24, which came into effect in September 2020. It removed qualifying conditions for adults and pediatric patients.
Doctors in Delaware can now use their experienced discretion to recommend an MMJ card. Essentially, a physician can approve patients with any debilitating condition if they wish. The bill also removed the requirement that only specialists could recommend cannabis for pediatric patients.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Medical Marijuana Card in DE?
According to the Delaware Department of Health Medical Marijuana Program, it will approve or deny a complete application within 45 calendar days of receiving it.
How to Renew My Delaware Medical Card?
Your medical marijuana card is valid for one year from the date it was issued. To renew, you must resubmit the entire application packet. This includes the Physician Certification Form, the Medical Release Form, and the $50 fee. A box at the top of the application asks whether you are a new patient or a renewing patient. You can submit a renewal application up to 90 days before your card expires.
Other Information on the DE Medical Marijuana License Process
Here, we answer some of the most frequently asked questions about medical marijuana in Delaware. If you have any other queries, drop them in the comments below.
What Types of Cannabis Can I Purchase in DE?
MMJ patients in Delaware can purchase the substance in any form. This includes pre-rolls, dry cannabis flower, vapes, tinctures, and edibles.
How to Get a Medical Marijuana Card in DE Online
Although Delaware has had a medical marijuana program for some time, there is a shortage of companies that enable you to apply online. However, a handful of organizations let you complete an online consultation.
Typically, the consultation lasts up to 15 minutes, and if you are approved for MMJ, the physician will register you with the state’s program. From there, you must go through the standard application process.
Can I Register My Child for Medical Marijuana in DE?
Yes. Minors can apply for a medical marijuana card in DE but require a parent or guardian to apply on their behalf.
Until relatively recently, applicants under 18 needed to submit a separate application form and get certified by a pediatric specialist. However, SB24 put paid to the demand for a specialist.
Where Can I Purchase MMJ in Delaware?
For many years, only three companies sold marijuana in Delaware; Columbia Card, First State Compassion, and Fresh Cannabis. However, the state has awarded licenses to the following enterprises:
- CannaTech Research
- Valor Craft Cannabis Co.
However, of the trio, only EzyCure has opened a dispensary, The Farm, in Felton. This takes the number of MMJ dispensaries in Delaware to seven, with the other stores located in the following areas:
- Wilmington x 2
- Rehoboth Beach
All “registered compassion centers” in Delaware are legally required to operate on a not-for-profit basis. These centers cannot provide you with more than three ounces of cannabis in 14 days. Also, they can’t employ anyone below the age of 21. Once you are a registered medical marijuana user in Delaware, you must pick one dispensary and stick with it.
How Much Cannabis Can I Buy & Possess?
With a valid MMJ card, you may buy and possess up to three ounces of cannabis every 14 days. This is a total of six ounces per month.
Can You Grow Marijuana in Delaware with a Medical Marijuana Card?
No. Cultivation is not allowed in Delaware, even with a valid MMJ card.
Where Can I Use My MMJ?
You may not use marijuana on a school bus. It is the same situation on any preschool, primary, or secondary school property. You must also not use cannabis on the property of any correctional facility or health care center. Marijuana use is prohibited in any form of transportation or any public place. In essence, you can only use it in a private residence.
Is My Certification Valid in a Different State?
No. Delaware has no reciprocity agreement with any other state.
What Are the Caregiver Rules?
You are allowed to have a designated caregiver (they will have to fill out a separate application), but they must meet the following criteria:
- Be at least 21 years of age
- Have agreed to help you use your marijuana for medical purposes
- Not have a conviction for a felony offense
- Assist a maximum of five patients
You can act as a caregiver if you also have an MMJ card. Caregivers must pay a $50 non-refundable fee. A background check is also performed, which the caregiver pays $65 for.
What if I Lose My Medical Card in Delaware?
If you lose your MMJ card, it costs $20 to get a replacement. You can either visit the MMJ program office or mail a request for the card with a $20 fee to obtain the replacement card.
When Did Medical Marijuana in Delaware Become Legal?
The original Delaware MMJ legislation dates back to May 2011. Governor Jack Markell signed a bill allowing patients aged 18+ with a specific qualifying medical condition to possess up to six ounces of cannabis.
Yet, the first MMJ clinic in the state didn’t open until June 2015. The program has grown steadily ever since.
In April 2023, Governor Carney finally admitted defeat in his attempts to prevent recreational legalization. He announced that he would no longer try to use his veto. It is now possible for adults aged 21+ to possess up to an ounce of marijuana in Delaware with no MMJ card.
However, early indications are that legal sales won’t begin until late 2024, possibly early 2025. It is legal to provide weed as a ‘gift,’ as long as you give it to someone aged 21+ and don’t receive any money in return. So, until legal recreational sales begin, you’ll need a medical marijuana card to buy weed in Delaware.
How to Get a Medical Marijuana Card in Wilmington
Applying for an MMJ card in Wilmington is arguably easier than in most other Delaware cities. The state’s largest city has a significant number of cannabis-friendly physicians, so you should find it easy to book an appointment, in theory. Also, it is the only location in Delaware with more than one licensed dispensary.
MMJ Card for Veterans in DE
Veterans living in Delaware are eligible for medical marijuana if they have one of the qualifying conditions. However, these days, it is at the physician’s discretion, and they may be more lenient towards someone who has served their country.
Final Thoughts on Getting a Delaware Medical Marijuana Card
In terms of population, Delaware is one of the smallest states in the nation. Therefore, while it has a long-running medical marijuana program, it has a relatively small number of MMJ cardholders.
If you want to join them, apply for your medical card in DE today. Recreational marijuana is now legal in Delaware. The thing is, sales won’t begin until the end of 2024 at the earliest. Consequently, you can only buy marijuana from a dispensary with a medical marijuana card. Applying isn’t particularly difficult and gives you legal protection, so get started as soon as possible.