Possession And Casual Exchange Of Marijuana In Tennessee

Although recent surveys and legislation across the United States has shown that many Americans favor the decriminalization of marijuana for primarily medicinal purposes, in Tennessee marijuana is a Schedule VI illegal substance. Even though simple possession of marijuana is a Class A misdemeanor per Tennessee Code Annotated § 39-17-418, drug offenses in Tennessee are taken very seriously and can be aggressively prosecuted. Ifmarijuana simple possession joint you are convicted of simple possession of marijuana you could be sentenced up to 11 months and 29 days in jail and a mandatory minimum fine of $250. After two or more prior convictions for simple possession you can be charged with a Class E felony on your third charge where penalties include a fine of up to $5,000 and between one and six years in prison, or both.

Although many realize marijuana is illegal in Tennessee, few understand the specifics of the law as it relates to casual exchange of marijuana and the penalties that accompany convictions. The term “casual exchange” means the spontaneous passing of a small amount (less than half an ounce or 14.175 grams) of an illegal drug, regardless whether money was received for the exchange of the illegal drug. An example might be passing a joint at a party. Under Tennessee law, the penalty for a casual exchange of a marijuana conviction(s) follow the same rules laid out under the simple possession with one big caveat — provided the casual exchange was between adults. If the casual exchange was from an adult to a minor who is two years younger than the adult then it can be charged as a class E felony, even if its your first arrest or citation for simple possession of marijuana.

The State of Tennessee is clear as it relates to all types of possession of marijuana being illegal and prosecution of such carrying serious consequences. If you are arrested and charged with simple possession or any crime in Tennessee, you will need an attorney. Call our criminal defense lawyers today to discuss your situation.

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