New York Senate Approves “Compassionate Care Act”

The New York State Assembly passed the “Compassionate Care Act” and now the medical marijuana law is simply awaiting the signature of Governor Andrew Cuomo. Under the new law, doctors will be allowed to prescribe marijuana in a non-smokable form to patients with recognized diseases and conditions. The “Compassionate Care Act” recognizes a number of pre-identified conditions but is also flexible to accommodate other patients who could benefit from the use of medical marijuana.

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The governor has continued to support the bill and is fully expected to sign it into law; however the measure could still take up to 18 months to be fully implemented. Our Orange County medical marijuana attorneys are dedicated to protecting the rights of patients in California and nationwide. In addition to advocating for individuals, vendors, and entities in Los Angeles and Southern California, our team is also abreast of legal developments in other states that support the use of medical marijuana. We are dedicated to raising awareness about the benefits of medical marijuana and in helping individuals protect their rights in a complex and changing political and legal climate.

In California and New York, patients, medical professionals, researchers, and now politicians are understanding the importance of medical marijuana use and research. Governor Cuomo has acknowledged the upside of marijuana use, but has also articulated concerns about the potential downsides. The goal of the measure is to provide patients with the benefits of medical marijuana while also implementing safeguards to prevent abuse.

It is widely known that medical marijuana is extremely beneficial to children with epilepsy and has pain relief qualities that can benefit patients with cancer, HIV/AIDS, sickle-cell, among a host of other diseases. The “Compassionate Care Act” will allow New Yorkers to pursue all available treatments and remedies as they struggle with medical challenges.

Throughout the state, bill had widespread support. The law puts New York on the map with 22 other states and the District of Columbia to allow some form of medical marijuana use. New York will also join its border states, including New Jersey, Vermont, and Connecticut.

In addition to legalizing medical marijuana, the bill also includes a section on criminal penalties for individuals who seek to “defraud the system.” Governor Cuomo has also implemented a mechanism that allows suspension of the program by recommendation of the State Police Superintendent or the Commissioner of Health. Opponents of the bill continue to assert that the bill and its approval was driven by politics.

Nationwide, the issue of medical marijuana legalization has compelled some families and individuals to move to states where the drugs are made available. Families have been known to move to Colorado to seek medical marijuana to treat epilepsy. Prior to passing the “Compassionate Care Act” New Yorkers have considered moving to California or other states to obtain cannabis oil or other forms of medical marijuana. Families in need are daunted by the 18-month waiting period and may still need to seek out treatment in other states until the bill is fully implemented.

The Los Angeles CANNABIS LAW Group represents growers, dispensaries, collectives, patients and those facing marijuana charges. Call us at 714-937-2050.

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