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What are the penalties for marijuana possession in Alaska?

On Behalf of | Sep 15, 2020 | Firm News

Alaska has some of the most lenient marijuana laws of any U.S. state. 

When it comes to possession and sharing for personal use, adults who are at least 21 years old are allowed to have up to one ounce on their person a any given time. It is, however, still possible for you to get charged with a misdemeanor or a felony for marijuana possession in some circumstances. 

How much marijuana you can legally possess

According to the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, there is no criminal penalty for having up to one ounce of marijuana as long as you are not on government property. Inside your home, the legal limit is four ounces. Outside of your home, however, penalties for possession begin when you are caught with more than one ounce. 

Misdemeanor penalties

If you are caught with an amount between one and four ounces outside of a private residence, you can be charged with a misdemeanor. The penalties at this level include a fine which can be $10,000 at most, and you may face up to one year of jail time. 

Felony penalties

It is a felony to have more than four ounces of marijuana in Alaska. This charge can lead to a fine of as much as $50,000 and a prison sentence of up to five years. 

It is also considered a felony to have any amount of marijuana within 500 feet of a recreation center or the grounds of a school. The maximum penalties for this are the same as if you have more than four ounces. Do keep in mind that if you can prove that you only had the marijuana inside of a private residence, you may have a defense against the felony charge if the amount was less than four ounces.