Bill C-45 received royal assent and recently became law, making Canada the 2nd country in the world (behind Uruguay), and the first G7 nation to allow recreational cannabis use.
There are still many, many questions remaining, and even once October 17 comes and goes, there will be lots left to be answered over the coming months and years. Luckily, we finally have at least some answers to many of the questions we’ve had over the past year since Trudeau made his big announcement to legalize. We’ve included some of the big ones below.
When can I legally buy weed (other than for medical use)?
In the eyes of the law, you’ll be able to legally purchase weed on October 17, 2018. But the law and reality are not always the same thing. The TRUE answer is it depends entirely on where you live. British Columbia, for example, is granting permits to many of the existing dispensaries, so you’ll be able to walk into a shop on Day 1 to buy a few buds.
On the other hand, Ontario, still doesn’t know what business model they’ll be using; as Ford has yet to make a final announcement after he publicly said he’s putting a stop to the government-monopoly model. That means Ontarians will not be buying legal weed on October 17 through stores that will come later on April 1, 2019, according to the Ontario government.
Can I buy extracts and edibles?
No. The government has said it will re-examine extracts and edibles with the goal to have a framework in place to regulate them within 1 year of October 17. As the government doesn’t use the same calendar as the rest of us, we deem that to be highly unlikely. So, if you’re a big fan of shatter or budder, you’ll need to get it from the same source for a while.
Can I grow my own?
According to C-45, yes, you can grow up to 4 plants at home for your own consumption. However, several provinces have decided to ban home growing, including Quebec and Manitoba. That means that in some cases, federal government law will contradict provincial law. Likely this will be taken to court, and eventually the federal government will probably win. However, a challenge like that could take years.
Please see our Grow Light article, for a comprehensive guide to cannabis lighting needs.
How old do I need to be to buy weed?
Pretty much the same age you need to be to buy alcohol. So, if you’re in Quebec, 18, Ontario, 19, etc.
Can I give some weed to my friends?
Sure! Feel free to share your favourite nugs with your favourite people. It’s got to be for free though, you can’t sell it to them.
Can I get my record cleared if I was convicted of a weed-related crime?
Possibly, eventually, but for now, no. Trudeau has said when the new system comes into place, the government will “look into amnesty and pardons.” There’s nothing on the books, though, and no firm plans or dates for this to happen.
Can I smoke pot outside in public places?
No, at least not at first, although this will vary a lot by province, municipality, or town. For most areas you’ll pretty much be limited to consuming your cannabis at home.
If you’re a renter, your landlord will also be able to prevent you from doing this, so keep that in mind. Landlords can also prevent you from growing in your home, FYI. But maybe they’ll be friendlier if you agree to share…
What if I get caught smoking weed in public?
Police will be able to ticket you, just like if you’re drinking in public. A first offense can be up to $1000!
Can I take cannabis across borders, if it’s also legal where I’m traveling to? (For example, British Columbia to Washington State)?
No. Seriously, don’t even try this. While it’s legal in the state of Washington, the US borders enforce federal laws, and it’s still federally illegal in the US. In fact, if border guards ask, don’t even admit to ever having used cannabis. Lately, US border guards have been handing out lifetime bans to Canadians, seemingly just for fun.
Can I get fired from work for smoking weed?
Sure can. Your employer will still be able to determine drug policy at your workplace. The exception is if you’re a medicinal user with a prescription.
Will my favourite online cannabis dispensary shut down?
Nope! Like we mentioned above, it will take years for the framework of C-45 to be fully realized and additional amendments and bills will be added to address a variety of the more nuanced questions surrounding legalization. We’re confident you’ll be able to continue to order from the many trusted, friendly, and low-cost online cannabis dispensaries we’ve reviewed right here on DispensaryGTA.com.
Got questions we haven’t answered? Post them in the comments below and we’ll do our best to help!