Marijuana Possession Laws and Penalties in Utah

Types of marijuana offenses

In Utah, marijuana (cannabis) is considered a schedule I controlled substance. The severity of a marijuana charge and its resulting penalties is largely dependent on the amount of marijuana with which you are found, as well as the type of crime. All of the following are punishable offenses under Utah marijuana possession laws, listed from least to most severe in terms of charge and potential consequences:

  • Possession – carrying marijuana for personal use
  • Possession of paraphernalia
  • Possession with intent to deliver
  • Distribution, sale or delivery of marijuana or paraphernalia
  • Cultivation – growing and/or harvesting cannabis seeds
  • Trafficking – importing into or exporting out of the state

Penalties for a marijuana possession conviction

The greater the amount of marijuana you are caught with, the greater the potential punishment. Classification of the charge as a misdemeanor or a felony also depends on the amount in your possession. Furthermore, the charge for a particular offense may be upgraded for repeated offenses. The following are the various levels of marijuana possession penalties in Utah:

  • One ounce or less – class B misdemeanor
    • Up to six months of jail time
    • Up to $1,940 in fines and an assessment
    • Possession in a drug-free zone such as a school, church or park can result in charge being upgraded to a class A misdemeanor
  • Between one ounce and one pound – class A misdemeanor
    • Up to 12 months jail time
    • Up to $4,790 in fines and an assessment
  • Between one and 100 pounds – third degree felony
    • Up to five years in Utah State Prison
    • Up to $9,540 in fines
  • Over 100 pounds – second degree felony

Marijuana distribution penalties in Utah

Sale, delivery or other transactions involving marijuana are significantly more serious offenses than mere possession. Distribution of any amount is a third degree felony for a first time conviction, with penalties of up to five years in Utah State Prison and $5,000 in fines. Subsequent convictions increase the felony classification and penalties, as does distribution in the presence of a minor or in a drug-free zone such as a school. A first-degree felony conviction results in a five-year mandatory prison sentence, at the very least.

Don’t gamble with your future. Talk to a qualified Utah criminal defense attorney.

If you have been charged with marijuana possession, distribution, cultivation or trafficking, the penalties could be severe. Talk to a criminal defense lawyer from Larsen, Larsen, Nash & Larsen to learn about your options. Call 801-758-8728 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. Conveniently located in West Valley City, we represent clients throughout Salt Lake County and the surrounding areas of northern Utah, including Summit County and Davis County, and Wabash, Provo, Ogden and Park City.