Illegal Drugs and Alcohol

MA Marijuana Law

On January 2, 2009, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts enacted a change in the law regarding the possession of marijuana. The new law amends the possession of one (1) ounce or less of marijuana or THC from a criminal offense to a civil infraction, punishable by a $100 civil penalty and forfeiture of the contraband. The law does not change the criminal status for those offenders who are in possession of marijuana or THC that exceeds one (1) ounce.

Offenders who are found to be in possession of one ounce or less of marijuana or THC will receive a civil citation to appear in court. The marijuana or THC will also be seized. Offenders do not have to appear in court if they choose to pay the fine before their assigned court date. If the offender is under the age of 18, parents or legal guardians will be notified and he or she will also be required to complete a drug awareness program within one year of the offense, with enhanced penalties for failure to comply.

It is very important to understand that possession of one ounce or less of marijuana or THC is still illegal in Massachusetts and is a violation of the Boston University Code of Student Responsibilities. Consequently, offenders remain subject to sanctions from the University along with the civil penalties prescribed by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

For more detailed information regarding the law, visit the Massachusetts Official Website of the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security.