If you are one of those fortunate ones that have managed to obtain a medical marijuana card and you’re now in need for a renewal, you’ve arrived at the right place.
In this definitive guide, we are going to cover all you need to know about the process of renewing your Medical Marijuana Card.
Why Do You Need to Renew Your Medical Marijuana Card?
Wouldn’t it be great to get your medical card and then literally never have to think about it again? Well, unfortunately it doesn’t work like that. In most states, medical marijuana cards are valid for one year. This is due to many different reasons, but the primary one is the medical aspect.
Monitoring authorities in most states want to constantly make sure that medical marijuana is being used responsibly, and is actually being used in the way that is consistent with the patient’s specific medical condition.
If the patient’s condition is improving, then the authorizing party may or may not renew the card. In other words, the evaluation of the renewal process is not a cut-and-dry situation – it is simply a process that is there to judge whether or not medical marijuana is still a necessity.
How Often do I have to Renew My Medical Marijuana Card?
As of now, a medical marijuana renewal is required every 12 months in most states, and in most instances you’ll need to renew it at least 30 days before the card’s date of expiration.
Please note however that the exact terms and conditions of the renewal process are determined on a state-by-state basis. Therefore it is best to check the exact time at which you are required to renew your card.
What is the Process?
Similar to when you applied as a first-time medical marijuana patient, the process for renewing your medical marijuana card is usually pretty straightforward. You’ll need to have a medical marijuana evaluation with a medical doctor, and then send a renewal application to your state’s medical marijuana department.
If you return to the physician who issued your original recommendation, your medical documents might still be on record – this will save you time and hassle as you won’t have to organize your entire medical history from scratch.
In any regard, it is important that you bring the following documents to your evaluation:
- Government ID: This proves that you are a resident of the state; if you don’t have a state ID, then make sure you bring with a utility bill that has your address.
- Medical records: Whether you are having an in-person evaluation or an online one, your doctor will need to understand your exact medical condition and why you are applying for a renewal. Even if you decide to return to the doctor who issued you your first recommendation, chances are he or she won’t remember you. Therefore, be sure to bring any and all prescriptions, X-ray/MRI results, worker’s compensation reports, and/or disability paperwork.
- Original Medical Card: Please do not to forget your original card.
The Followup Evaluation for a Medical Marijuana Card Renewal – How Does it Work?
Unlike your first evaluation, the doctor will review your condition and ask you different questions in regards to your current health status. He or she will try to understand whether medical weed is helping you with your condition.
Furthermore, the physician may outline a treatment plan, ask you about any side effects you’ve experienced during your previous year, and stress the risks of using medical cannabis.
Once the consultation is complete, the evaluating physician will ask if you have any questions about the process or the benefits of medical marijuana, after which he or she will determine the outcome of the evaluation.
Please don’t assume that because you were approved for a medical marijuana card in the past, you’ll receive another recommendation. This isn’t always the case.
How Long Will It Take to Receive Your New MMJ Card after renewal?
The process is not long, and you will more than likely receive your renewed medical marijuana card (that is valid for 1 year), within 14 business days. Of course, this depends on the agency that is submitting the documents to your Board of Health Services.
If you renew your card at least 20 days before expiration, you shouldn’t have a “dead period” where you can’t purchase weed. The new card will be valid for 12 months (in most states), and you will have to go through the same process one year later.
The Benefits of Renewing Your Medical Cannabis Card
Even though this may be stating the obvious, renewing your medical marijuana card allows you to purchase weed legally without any hassle. However, it is always important to remember that while medical marijuana may be legal in your state, it is still classed as an illegal drug on a Federal level.
Furthermore, a medical cannabis renewal may allow you to obtain marijuana at a lower price at your local dispensary, as you will be a continued registered medical user rather than a recreational smoker.
[Need further help? If this is your first time applying for a medical marijuana card or if you require additional information about the medical marijuana renewal process, feel free to get in touch.]
Related Article: 3 Essential Things You NEED to Get a Medical Marijuana Card