If you’re reading this, then you already know that to purchase medical marijuana in the state of Arizona you need an MMJ card.
In this comprehensive step-by-step guide we’ve mapped out the exact process you need to know to obtain a medical marijuana card . You’ll also find answers to some of the top questions asked by our medical patients.
Before we explain the practical steps on how to obtain an Arizona medical marijuana card, it’s important to understand the current situation in Arizona, in regard to medical marijuana laws.
Arizona isn’t the easiest state to obtain medical marijuana, but it is far from the hardest. On November 02, 2010, the state took a giant leap and approved the Arizona Proposition 203 aka the “Arizona Medical Marijuana Act,” which removed all state-level criminal penalties for the use and possession of medical marijuana.
The proposition also implemented a registration and renewal process governed by the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS), which allows qualified patients to legally purchase cannabis under the recommendation of a physician that is licensed in Arizona. Here is how to get a medical marijuana card in Arizona:
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How to Get a Medical Marijuana Card in Arizona?
As a resident of the state, the process of obtaining a medical marijuana card in Arizona is as follows:
The first step to obtain a medical marijuana card in the state of Arizona is to have a physician fill out and sign an official ADHS medical marijuana certification form on your behalf. Any Allopathic (MD), Osteopathic (DO), Homeopathic [MD(H)/DO(H)], or Naturopathic (NMD or ND) doctor who is licensed to practice in AZ, and who has a physician-patient relationship with you, may fill out the form. It cannot be from a doctor outside of AZ.
Also, unlike in other states Arizona does not provide a list of marijuana-recommending physicians – you must consult with a recommending physician on your own behalf, or on the behalf of your caregiver. The recommending physician however does not have to be the same physician that made the initial diagnosis of the qualifying condition (see below for the list of qualifying conditions).
*Also please note, your doctor can’t simply provide a written recommendation, it has to be a completed and signed copy of the state’s physician certification form (see link above).
Also, to get a Medical Marijuana Card in the state of Arizona, you MUST be a resident of the state. You will need to provide proof of residency, for example with an Arizona ID, passport, or other photo ID that shows proof of residency (such as a bank statement, utility bill, etc).
If you are from another state, it MAY be possible to obtain a medical card, but it is decided by the ADHS on a case-by-case basis. From our knowledge, most out of state residents are denied a medical marijuana card from state officials.
Once you have obtained the official signed ADHS medical marijuana form from a licensed doctor, you will need to gather the additional documents that you will need in order to complete the online ADHS application.
These documents include:
- A photo ID: This can be ONE of the following: a valid AZ driver’s license, an AZ identification card, an AZ registry identification card, or a U.S. passport. (*Please note if the driver’s license/identification card is dated before October 1, 1996, it will need to be accompanied by ONE of the following: a birth certificate that verifies U.S. citizenship, a U.S. Certificate of Naturalization, or a U.S. Certificate of Citizenship
- A current photograph that is separate from your official photo ID: This must be taken no more than 60 calendar days before the submission of the application, and must be 2” x 2” in size and taken in natural color with a plain white or off-white background, and a front view of the individual’s full face (no hats, headgear etc that obscures the hair or hairline)
- A completed and signed Patient Attestation Form
- SNAP documentation (this only applies to applicants with an electronic benefits transfer card that demonstrates current participation in the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Services, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program).
*Remember, all of these documents must be accompanied by the physician recommendation form. Also, each document must be scanned and uploaded into .PDF format for online submission – hand delivered applications are not accepted. If you have problems or are not tech savvy it would be best to consult with a local office supply store like Staples, Office Depot, etc.
For a complete list of required application materials, check out the AZ Medical Marijuana Qualifying Patient checklist.
Once the physician’s medical recommendation and all accompanying documents are ready, the next step is to register with the Arizona Department of Health Services and proceed with the medical marijuana online application.
*For patients under 18 years of age, please make sure you choose the relevant form, as there is a separate application for minors. (Also, there is a designated application for caregivers that are registering on behalf of a patient).
For further information feel free to contact the Arizona Department of Health Services:
Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS)
Medical Marijuana Program
150 North 18th Avenue
Phoenix, Arizona 85007
One of the good things about Arizona, compared to other states, is that they seem to have adopted the fact that we’re in the 21st century – you can easily follow up on the status of your medical card application by using their online service.
What are Arizona Medical Cannabis Card Costs?
- The online application cost for qualifying patients is $150 for either an initial or a renewal identification card (though some qualifying patients may be eligible to pay $75 if they are a SNAP participant).
- $200 for an initial or a renewal registry identification card for a designated caregiver. (A caregiver must apply for a new card for every patient under their care, for a maximum of up to five patients).
- $500 for an initial or a renewal registry identification card for a dispensary agent.
- $5,000 for an initial dispensary registration certificate.
- $1,000 for a renewal dispensary registration certificate.
- $2,500 to change the location of a dispensary or cultivation facility.
- $10 to amend, change, or replace a registry identification card.
What are the Qualifying Conditions Required to Receive Medical Marijuana in Arizona?
Patients of Arizona diagnosed with one of the following severe, debilitating, or life-threatening medical conditions are afforded legal protection under the Arizona Medical Marijuana law, as per Ballot Proposition 203 Arizona Medical Marijuana Act:
- Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)
- Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS)
- Hepatitis C
- Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
- Crohn’s Disease
- Agitation of Alzheimer’s disease
A chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or the treatment for a chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition that causes:
- Cachexia or wasting syndrome;
- Severe and chronic pain;
- Severe nausea;
- Seizures, including those characteristic of epilepsy;
- Severe or persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis
Other Important Information on the Arizona Medical Marijuana License Process
Can I only Apply Online? Or Can I walk it in?
Submission of the ADHS application is only available online – no walk-ins are allowed.
How Long Will It take to Receive a Medical Card?
After ADHS receives a completed application, ADHS will issue a registry identification card to the patient within 10 working days.
What Are Approved Medical Marijuana Patients Entitled To?
By enrolling and receiving approval by the state of Arizona, you may possess an “allowable amount of marijuana,” which is defined as:
- Two and a half (2.5) ounces of usable marijuana; and
- If the registry identification card states that you are authorized to cultivate marijuana, twelve marijuana plants contained in an enclosed, locked facility (qualifying patients who are moving to another area of Arizona are allowed to transport mature marijuana plants to their new location).
Can I Grow My Own Medical Marijuana in Arizona?
Yes, but you must declare your intention to cultivate on the application form. Also, you must live in an area of Arizona that is greater than 25 miles from a state licensed dispensary. (According to state law, if a qualifying patient or the qualifying patient’s caregiver is permitted to cultivate marijuana as per their registration identification card, they may do so only if a dispensary is not operating within 25 miles of the qualifying patient’s (or caregiver’s) home).
How to Renew Your Arizona Medical Marijuana Card?
The process to renew your AZ medical marijuana card is pretty straightforward, and can be done by downloading the official state form. You can only apply for a renewal if you have less than 90 days on your current medical card.
Per Arizona Administrative Code (A.A.C.) R9-17-102, the application fee for a renewal application is the same as the application fee for a new application:
- Qualifying Patient Application, $150
- Qualifying Patient Application that is eligible for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), $75
- Minor Patient Application (includes caregiver), $350 or $275 if SNAP eligible
- Designated Caregiver Application, $200 (for each application)
In addition, several documents will need to be updated each time you renew:
- You will need to obtain and submit a new, current physician certification.
- You will need to obtain and submit a new, current photograph (taken no more than 60 calendar days before you submit your renewal).
- You will need to obtain and submit a new Patient Attestation Form signed and dated with the current date.
- You will need to obtain and submit current documentation of your SNAP eligibility. The document submitted must indicate your first and last name.
- You may need to submit a copy of your identification if your name has changed since your last application.
Related Article: 3 Ways to Get a Medical Marijuana Card Online (in Minutes)
Can I use Medical Marijuana Anywhere?
It is important to remember that when smoking in public, it may be assumed that you are using it for recreational use, which is illegal on a Federal Level. It is advised to consume your medicine responsibly, in the safety of your home or a private residence.
According to the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act, a qualifying patient may not consume medical marijuana at a dispensary, but may eat medical marijuana in foods or use infused products at other locations.
State law lists places where a qualifying patient may not smoke medical marijuana, including public places. A qualifying patient who lives in a nursing care institution, hospice, assisted living facility, or adult foster care home or who attends an adult day health care facility may also have to follow restrictions imposed by the facility.
Can I Consume medical Cannabis in My Car?
No. A patient cannot drive while under the influence of marijuana.
Can I take My Medical Marijuana to a Different State?
Medical marijuana patients may face federal and local charges of transporting marijuana if they cross state lines with the drug. This is true even if the states between which they are traveling allow medical marijuana. Should you need to travel with your marijuana, it would be best to contact the state’s Bureau of health to understand the specific laws of the state you are going to not risk breaking any laws.
How Much Medical Marijuana Should I consume?
We are not doctors or physicians, and therefore you should always consult with a professional before using medical marijuana.
Should you have any other questions, feel free to contact us through our Facebook Page or go directly to the ADHS FAQ page
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Need a Medical Marijuana Card? Let us help by Starting Here