Marijuana cards, gun ownership combination remain a legal risk

by Jim Guy  |  published on November 17, 2014

As the use of marijuana gains acceptance for both recreational and medicinal use, owners and buyers of firearms should be aware that the federal government still doesn’t believe the two should mix, according to authorities in both fields. They add that the chance of prosecution for a federal felony, while not highly probable, is nothing to take lightly.

The experts cite question 11(e) of the federal Firearms Transaction Record, which asks gun buyers whether he or she is “an unlawful user of, or addicted to, marijuana or any depressant, stimulant, narcotic drug or any other controlled substance.” They also refer to a Sept. 21, 2011 letter from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to federal firearms licensees, which states that there “are no exceptions in federal law for marijuana purportedly used for medicinal purposes, even if it is sanctioned by state law.”

Possession of a marijuana card, such as those issued to marijuana users under Proposition 215, California’s Compassionate Care Act, could prove legally problematic for anyone who answers “no” to question 11(e), according to Sam Paredes of Gun Owners of California.

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