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Marihuana Possession In Michigan: It Was Intended To Be Medical After The Fact


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I was quite surprised and upset to see a fellow brethren attorney blogging so incorrectly about the interpretation of the MMMA. Whats more, he was agreeing with a short sited, narrow interpretation of the law. You can link to his piece here.

 

The suggestion that a person cannot utilize the protections of the medical use of marihuana defense if they get their card after there arrest is simply not true.

Nowhere in section 8 of the affirmative defenses does that statute specifically state, suggest, indicate or imply a contemporaneous requirement to have the card at the time of the arrest.

 

Moreover, many patients, who have been diagnosed with one of the enumerated conditions covered by law may not have the money to get a certification, may not be covered by health insurance, or may not have records immediately available to present to a doctor for review. I cannot accept the premise that such circumstances preclude a patient without their card from asserting an affirmative defense.

 

A careful reading of the statute very clearly indicates that there is no card requirement in section 8. Rather, one needs either a doctor to testify on their behalf or present evidence via an affidavit that they will receive palliative benefits from the use. To assert this defense you must be a patient or a caregiver, If you look at how the terms patient and primary caregiver are defined in the statute you will see that neither definition requires a registry card.

 

“Registry card’ protections as set out in section 4 are protections against arrest. The protections of section 8, the affirmative defenses, are those that occur in court after you have been arrested. The protections come if you can prove elements a-c at an evidentiary hearing, and, if you do so as a matter of law, the Court must dismiss the charges,. If the court does not make such a finding you have a right to present the medical use of marihuana defense to a jury.

 

This law was intended to protect a wide variety of situations that involve marihuana use for patients. It is not intended to be interpreted narrowly, and I suggest that these points should not be conceded in court. It only sets bad precedent.

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I would just like to utilize my 420th post (which I have been reserving for that "special post of all posts" : ) since becoming a member of the MMMA, to say:

 

This is the most relevant, professional post I have ever read on this forum, or the "old forum"!

 

Thank You!

 

This is EXACTLY what "WE the PEOPLE" of the State of Michigan needed to see stated for the benefit of "Our Community" of patient-residents by an attorney.

 

Thank you again.

 

And again; and again . . .

 

. . . for this Promising, Healing - and hopefully now "Preventative" - message.

 

: ]

 

CANNABIS CURES - without fears.

 

Free the TREE!

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Guest Wayne

Mr. Kormon, Would you be familiar with how a family should respond when awakened by the sound of a flash grenade detonating in their home? I'd like to be prepared for the experience if local law enforcement is inadvertantly provided my address by an anonymous tipster or similar situation. I don't want to be made responsible for a family members death when killed by a police firearm discharge in my home. Any professional advice would be greatly appreciated by this community I'm certain.

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Mr Komorn,

I thank you for the info. I am in the exact situation that you describe. I am awaiting charges right now. The night that I was in jail my wife got am attorney for me that seems unfamiliar with the new laws. Me and my wife are waiting for our cards right now and it has been 70 days since applying. I have continuously tried to educate him. I have given copies of the law and even court copies of the AD that were from cases that Matt Abel had. I have a bad feeling that he is not even gonna try the AD. He says that he can't committ or advise anything until he sees the charges. I have a bad feeling that he is just running me towards a plea. If that happens I will lose everything, my proffesional licence with the state and much much more. I lost the ability to be in skilled trades in 1999 after 2 unsuccesful re-constuctive surgeries and went into a less physically demanding profession. In 2003 my wife got West Nile Virus/Enchepilitis and is now permanently disabled. What do I do? I am just scared that if I have faith and wait it could ruin my life. Please give me some advice.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Mr Komorn,

I thank you for the info. I am in the exact situation that you describe. I am awaiting charges right now. The night that I was in jail my wife got am attorney for me that seems unfamiliar with the new laws. Me and my wife are waiting for our cards right now and it has been 70 days since applying. I have continuously tried to educate him. I have given copies of the law and even court copies of the AD that were from cases that Matt Abel had. I have a bad feeling that he is not even gonna try the AD. He says that he can't committ or advise anything until he sees the charges. I have a bad feeling that he is just running me towards a plea. If that happens I will lose everything, my proffesional licence with the state and much much more. I lost the ability to be in skilled trades in 1999 after 2 unsuccesful re-constuctive surgeries and went into a less physically demanding profession. In 2003 my wife got West Nile Virus/Enchepilitis and is now permanently disabled. What do I do? I am just scared that if I have faith and wait it could ruin my life. Please give me some advice.

I just wanted to say that I was wrong. I got charged this week and I got to see my attorney in action. My wife was also charged and he handled her arrainment too. He also says that he is going to file a motion to dismiss on the medical basis and that if we win I will be getting most of the forfeited items back! He recommended an attorney for my wife that he says he has worked closely with positive results before. We are meeting with him on Tues.I couldn't be happier with his actions. I don't know if it was the stuff I showed him on the AD or not but dont be afraid to educate your attorneys. Alot don't yet know all of the details. Anyways I feel a little hope for the first time in a while. Have a good holiday weekend everyone!

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Moreover, many patients, who have been diagnosed with one of the enumerated conditions covered by law may not have the money to get a certification, may not be covered by health insurance, or may not have records immediately available to present to a doctor for review. I cannot accept the premise that such circumstances preclude a patient without their card from asserting an affirmative defense.

 

A careful reading of the statute very clearly indicates that there is no card requirement in section 8. Rather, one needs either a doctor to testify on their behalf or present evidence via an affidavit that they will receive palliative benefits from the use. To assert this defense you must be a patient or a caregiver, If you look at how the terms patient and primary caregiver are defined in the statute you will see that neither definition requires a registry card.

 

“Registry card’ protections as set out in section 4 are protections against arrest. The protections of section 8, the affirmative defenses, are those that occur in court after you have been arrested. The protections come if you can prove elements a-c at an evidentiary hearing, and, if you do so as a matter of law, the Court must dismiss the charges,. If the court does not make such a finding you have a right to present the medical use of marihuana defense to a jury.

 

This law was intended to protect a wide variety of situations that involve marihuana use for patients. It is not intended to be interpreted narrowly, and I suggest that these points should not be conceded in court. It only sets bad precedent.

Thank you Michael, thank you for all you do and for taking time to post at this site.

 

Sb

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If everyone interpreted the law as Michael does, there'd be a LOT fewer arrests, obviously. I see a lot of messages saying LEO won't recognize paperwork, and the reasons why; I'm seeing that the law is supposed to protect MM patients. If federal law wasn't in conflict with state law, there'd be a LOT LESS problems. To me, this is one of the most urgent matters we face.

 

Sb

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If everyone interpreted the law as Michael does, there'd be a LOT fewer arrests, obviously. I see a lot of messages saying LEO won't recognize paperwork, and the reasons why; I'm seeing that the law is supposed to protect MM patients. If federal law wasn't in conflict with state law, there'd be a LOT LESS problems. To me, this is one of the most urgent matters we face.

 

Sb

 

maybe thats is why we are in court because of paper work and when we win it will be set in stone let hope

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I was charged on November 3, 2008. I successfully used the MM defense. I went to court before possessing my card, and the courts convened until I received my card. I was charged with a misdemeanor, but that's a far cry from the 5 original felony charges. Still, it will be interpreted locally until a case reaches the higher courts.

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me to because we were legal all the way we had are paper work befor the bust and under plants rolleyes.gif so how could it not be in are favor?

Hi bobandtorey, I'm sorry I don't remember all the details of your situation, so I don't remember if you had your cards at the time. Even if you didn't, isn't the law supposed to recognize the paperwork as proof? I thought I read somewhere though that LEO won't recognize the paperwork without a card because every check is cashed even if denied and LEO claims the denied patients could still use the paperwork somehow, or try to. Somewhere around here I saw a suggestion of a pin number that could be issued to those who are approved, while people await their cards. I also thought LEO has a database of all registered patients and cg's- if that's so, they should be able to look up someone's name and know instantly if they are or aren't registered, if that name gets in there as soon as the people are approved, even if the card hasn't been received yet. Sometimes I wish I could've been a lawyer so I could defend MM.

 

Sincerely, Sb

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I have always stated that the most important thing a person needs under the MMMA is to be a “qualified patient”. For a registration card, a doctor‘s written recommendation is needed. Those with verbal recommendations should all be covered under AD; as are those with cards, but outside or beyond the registration restrictions.

 

The card offers a concrete list of restrictions and protections. What should be the upside, is the downside. The downside is that LEO is not extending the protections to those willing to abide by the restrictions.

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The card offers a concrete list of restrictions and protections. What should be the upside, is the downside. The downside is that LEO is not extending the protections to those willing to abide by the restrictions.

That's because of the conflict between state and federal- as far as I can see that's the only reason though I could be wrong, a lot of people hate the whole idea of MM and mj in general and hate anyone associated with it; I think they're using the fed law to hide behind their prejudice.. It's a state law, the state LEO should abide by it. They don't always abide by other laws, either, how often have they gone into a home without a warrant, for example? If we can't expect them to follow the law...... Oh if I were a police chief and someone in MY department did something wrong!

 

Sb

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