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What Does New Hampshire’s Decriminalization of Marijuana Mean?

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NH Decriminalization – Starting Saturday, September 16, 2017, possession by adults of three-quarters of an ounce or less of marijuana or 5 grams or less of hashish is no longer a crime.  Instead, possession of this personal use amount of marijuana or hashish is a violation level, non-criminal offense, and you can’t be arrested for it. This makes the offense more in line with a speeding ticket. A person charged with a violation for possession of these substances will receive a hand summons with a date they have to be in court to answer the summons. The 1st two offenses for possession of these small amounts carry a $100 fine each, while a 3rd offense within 3 years carries a fine of $300. The message here is that the NH government still doesn’t want its citizens to have pot, but it doesn’t want to convict adults of a crime for having small amounts of it.

Marijuana – Underage People Can Still Be Charged

It’s important to keep in mind here that adult is defined as age 21 and over. Younger people in possession of even these small amounts can still be charged with a criminal offense. It also remains unclear what effect these violation level convictions will have on federal student aid. The FAFSA rules are silent on drug convictions at a violation level. If you’ve been charged with possession of any drug, it’s in your best interest to consult an experienced criminal defense lawyer. Call me. We’ll talk about any consequences. With this new change in the law, I expect to tell most of you that you don’t need a lawyer and to pay your $100 “speeding ticket.”  Call (603) 288-1403 or fill out our online contact form.