ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Recreational marijuana has been legal in Illinois for three years, and it has been an economical boon, soaring past $1.5 billion in 2022.
While the drug might now be legal in the state, there are still limits on how much a person can possess at one time.
With that being said, some residents might be wondering if they can still go to jail for marijuana in the state if they have too much.
Illinois residents can own up to 30 grams of marijuana flower at a time, according to Norml. The penalties for owning more than this depends on the amount, as well as the number of offenses.
Having between 30-100 grams for a first offense is considered a misdemeanor and can lead to a year of jail time. If a person is caught doing it again, it becomes a felony, which can result in up to three years of jail time.
Having 100-500 grams results in the same penalty as a second offense of the amount mentioned above.
The more the amount goes up from here, the more the penalty goes up as well. For example, having more than 5,000 grams in one’s possession could lead to 15 years behind bars.
While marijuana is now recreationally legal in the state, it can only be purchased from a licensed dispensary. If a person decides to sell weed by themselves, they can face major penalities.
For example, selling or trafficking more than 5,000 grams of marijuana in the state can lead to 30 years of incarceration and a $200,000 fine.
There is also a limit on the number of plants that Illinois residents can cultivate for their own use. Medical patients in the state can have up to five of their own plants without facing any penalties. If a non-medical patient has five plants for their own use, they will not face any jail time, but there is a $200 fine.
However, the more plants, the higher the penalty. Having more than five is a felony in the state. Having up to 20 plants can lead to a 3-year sentence, while having up to 50 can lead to a 5-year sentence.
Having more than 200 plants can land a person behind bars for 15 years.