Is Weed Legal In Iowa?

Home » Is Weed Legal In Iowa?
Garry Stewart
Written By Steve Brandon

May 31, 2024

is weed legal in iowa

Currently, medical marijuana is legal in Iowa, despite the inconsistency of its legalization program. While certain forms of edibles like capsules, tinctures, and lotions are permitted, smoking marijuana for medical purposes is prohibited. Recreational use of marijuana is also banned in the state. Patients holding a medical marijuana card are allowed to possess a maximum of 4 grams. In cases where higher doses are necessary, the limit was raised to 5 grams of THC per 90-day period, with provisions for adjustments for patients requiring larger amounts to effectively manage their medical conditions.

Iowa follows a strict policy toward possessing marijuana, which results in six months of jail with a $1000 fine for first-time offenders. For repeated offenders, penalties are increased to 2 years of imprisonment and a fine of $6,250. Cultivation and transportation of marijuana are considered criminal offenses, with penalties ranging from six years imprisonment and fines of $7,500 for possession of 50 kg or less to fines of up to $1 million for possession of more than 1000 kg.

Discussing the Iowa Weed Laws

Medical marijuana legalization in Iowa has progressed gradually. It began in 2014 with the Medical Cannabidiol Act (SB 2360), which allowed doctors to prescribe CBD oil with less than 3% THC to patients with intractable epilepsy starting in 2015. However, it was initially difficult to obtain due to conflicting laws on production and transport.

In 2017, amendments expanded the list of qualifying conditions to include cancer, multiple sclerosis, Crohn’s disease, and untreatable pain. These amendments also allowed for the licensed cultivation of medical marijuana, leading to the opening of dispensaries in December 2018. Further amendments in 2020 added more qualifying conditions and set possession limits at 4.5 grams of THC every 90 days, with exceptions for terminally ill patients and those needing higher doses.

qualifying medical conditions for medical marijuana card

Qualifying Medical Conditions for Medical Marijuana Card

If an Iowa resident have one of these health conditions confirmed by their healthcare provider, they can qualify for Iowa’s Medical Cannabis Program and this includes medical conditions like:

  • Cancer that causes severe pain, nausea, or severe vomiting
  • Seizures
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Chronic pain
  • Multiple Sclerosis with severe muscle spasms
  • AIDS or HIV
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Any terminal illness with a life expectancy of under one year that causes severe pain, nausea, or severe wasting
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Severe, intractable pediatric autism with self-injurious or aggressive behaviors
  • Severe, intractable autism with self-injurious or aggressive behaviors
  • Corticobasal Degeneration

Iowa Public Consumption Laws

  • Hosting Events: It is a criminal offense to advertise any meeting where marijuana is sold or will be in use and the penalty for a misdemeanor is one-year imprisonment alongside a fine of $1, 875.
  • Selling to Minors: It is a felony to sell any marijuana to a minor within a park or school proximity and this attracts ten years of jail term plus a fine not exceeding $100,000.
  • Public Consumption: Public consumption of marijuana is referred to as an offense. There are also penalties for possession.
  • Smoking Restrictions: Smoking is strictly prohibited in Iowa in both public or in private places.

Iowa Cannabis DUI Laws

  • Driving Under the Influence: (DUI) It is illegal to drive while under the influence of cannabis, even in states with medical or adult-use legalization.
  • Implied Consent: Drivers in Iowa must submit to blood, breath, or urine tests if suspected of DUI. Refusal leads to a minimum 90-day license suspension.
  • Right to an Attorney Drivers can speak to an attorney before taking the test.

Penalties for DUI

First Offense:
  • Jail: 48 hours to one year
  • Fine: $1,250 (up to $625 may be waived for community service)
  • License: 180-day suspension
  • Requirements: Substance abuse evaluation and treatment program
Second Offense (within 12 years):
  • Jail: Seven days to two years
  • Fine: $1,875 to $6,250
  • License: One-year suspension
  • IID: Required for one year after license restoration
  • Requirements: Substance abuse evaluation and treatment program
Third and Subsequent Offenses:
  • Jail: 30 days to five years (Class D felony)
  • Fine: $3,125 to $9,375
  • License: One-year suspension
  • IID: Required for one year after license restoration
  • Requirements: Substance abuse evaluation and treatment program
how to get a medical marijuana card in iowa

How to Get a Medical Marijuana Card in Iowa

Registration and Required Documents

Here’s how you can get your medical marijuana card through My MMJ Doctor:

  1. Sign-Up for Registration:
    Register on My MMJ Doctor and complete the appointment booking form to schedule a consultation with a healthcare professional.
  2. Online Consultation:
    At the scheduled time and date, you will have a video consultation. During this session, the doctor will assess your medical condition and determine your eligibility for medical cannabis in Iowa.
  3. Approval and Registration:
    Once approved, you will receive a recommendation letter. This letter will allow you to register for the state’s medical cannabis program. Your application will be reviewed within 30 to 60 days. If authorized, you will be issued an Iowa Medical Cannabis card.

Is Recreational Marijuana Legal in Iowa?

No, recreational marijuana is illegal in Iowa. The state’s dispensaries do not accept out-of-state medical marijuana cards. However, a provision in the 2017 Act allows cardholders from other states to possess marijuana-based products under Iowa’s rules.

When Does Your Iowa Medical Marijuana Card Expire?

Your Iowa medical marijuana card expires one year after the date of approval. To maintain an active Medical Cannabidiol card, you must submit a renewal application annually, including a recertification from your physician. Patients will be notified 60 days before their card expires to ensure they have ample time to complete the renewal process.


It is important to understand the legal status of marijuana in Iowa as it is not only for the residents but also for the visitors to avoid any conflict with the law. While medical marijuana can be obtained and is easily available under strict regulations recreational use remains illegal in Iowa. Keeping updated with the latest laws and their regulations is important and for easy registration for medical marijuana, you can connect with My MMJ Doctor.

3 Easy Steps To Apply For Medical Marijuana Card

Our Simple 3 Step Process For Medical Marijuana Card

1. Fill up your details in an easy 420 Evaluations form.

2. Get Evaluated by a Local MMJ doctor After Online Submission.

3. Get Approved and Receive your Recommendation In Your Email.

Looking To Apply For A Medical Marijuana Card?

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