Question: Why is
marihuana spelled with an "h", rather than a "j",
in Initiated Law 1 of 2008 and the administrative
Answer: Marihuana is one of two
acceptable spellings in the dictionary and is
consistent with the spelling in the Michigan Public
Health Code, Act 368 of 1978, and Initiated Law 1 of
do I register as a medical marihuana patient with
"Qualifying patients" must register with the
Michigan Department of Community Health, Bureau of
Health Professions, P.O. Box
To register, the patient must submit (on forms
provided by the department) the following
(a) an application or renewal fee;
(b) the name, address, and birth date of the
(c) the name, address, and telephone number of the
qualifying patient's physician;
(d) the name, address, and birth date of the
qualifying patient's caregiver, if any.
(e) written certification that the person is a
What medical conditions are eligible?
Answer: Patients must suffer from a
debilitating medical condition, defined as:
(a) cancer, glaucoma, or positive status for human
immunodeficiency virus (HIV), acquired immune
deficiency syndrome (AIDS), hepatitis C, amyotrophic
lateral sclerosis, Crohn's disease, agitation of
Alzheimer's disease, or nail patella.
(b) a chronic or debilitating disease or medical
condition or its treatment that produces one of more
of the following:
(i) cachexia or wasting syndrome;
(ii) severe and chronic pain;
(iii) severe nausea;
(iv) seizures, including but not limited to those
caused by epilepsy; or
(v) severe or persistent muscle spasms, including
but not limited to, those which are characteristic
of multiple sclerosis; or
(c) any other medical condition or treatment for
a medical condition adopted by the department by
rule. (NOTE: To date, the department has not added
to the list by administrative rule.)
any age limits apply?
Answer: Registered caregivers must be 21 or
older. Patients under age 18 must have the consent
of their parent or guardian responsible for medical
decisions. The parent or guardian must be the
registered caregiver of the minor patient.
What is the fee to apply for participation in the
Michigan Medical Marihuana Program (MMMP)? Are there
any circumstances under which the fee can be
Answer: The fee for a new or renewal
application is $100.00, unless a qualifying patient
can demonstrate his or her current eligibility in
the Medicaid Health Plan or receipt of current SSD
or SSI benefits, in which case the application fee
I don't have the money for the
registration fee. Is it a one-time payment? Can it
be waived? Can I make installment payments?
Answer: Full payment, by check or money
order, must be made at the time of the initial
application and at renewal each year. The fee cannot
be waived, and the department cannot accept
do I need to have a physician sign and date a
"Physician Certification" form? Why can't I just
provide my medical records?
Answer: According to the Michigan Medical
Marihuana Act (MMMA), a physician must state in
writing that the patient has a qualifying
debilitating medical condition and that medical
marihuana may mitigate the symptoms or effects of
that condition. The MMMP contacts each physician
during the application process to verify the patient
is under the physician's care. A signed and dated
"Physician Certification" must be current within 3
months of the date of a person's new or renewal
the MMMP refer me to a physician?
Answer: No. The MMMP does not serve as a
referral source. Any Doctor of Medicine (MD) or
Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) licensed in
recommend a patient for the program.
are only MDs (Medical Doctors) and DOs (Doctors of
Osteopathic Medicine) qualified to sign the
"Physician Certification"? Why not chiropractors,
physician's assistants or nurse practitioners? Does
the physician have to be licensed in
Answer: The MMMA states that a "physician"
means a Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of
Osteopathic Medicine (DO) licensed under Article 15,
Parts 170 and 175 of the Michigan Public Health
Code. MDs and DOs are the physicians licensed under
these parts. The law also specifies that a physician
must be licensed in Michigan. The
MMMP verifies with the Board of Medicine or Board of
Osteopathic Medicine that each patient's attending
physician has a valid license to practice medicine
and has no disqualifying restrictions.
I have someone else sign and date my application (a
"proxy") if I am physically unable to do so?
Answer: Yes, as long as the individual
signing your application identifies him or herself
as your proxy next to his or her signature on your
application or has provided documentation showing
guardianship or power of attorney.
happens to my application once I mail it? What if I
don't send in all the required parts of my
Answer: The MMMP has 15 days to review your
application to make sure it is complete and all
parts are current. If your application is
complete, your registry identification card will be
issued within 5 days after the MMMP verifies the
information on your application. If you don't send
in all the required parts of your application, the
application will be denied.
Question: Do I
need to keep a copy of my application and any other
information I send to the MMMP?
Answer: Yes. If your application has not yet
been approved, denied or terminated you may provide
law enforcement with a copy of your written
documentation submitted to the department; you must
also submit proof of the date of mailing or other
transmission of the documentation. This
documentation shall have the same legal effect as a
registry identification card, until such time as you
receive your card or you have received notification
that your application has been approved, denied or
has access to the patient registry list?
Answer: The state will maintain a
confidential list of "qualified patients" and
"approved caregivers" to whom the department has
issued registry identification cards. Individual
names and other identifying information on the list
must be confidential and is not subject to
disclosure, except to:
(a) authorized employees of the department as
necessary to perform official duties of the
(b) authorized employees of state or local law
enforcement agencies, only as necessary to verify
that a person is a lawful possessor of a registry
my confidentiality protected?
Answer: Yes. The MMMP does not give out lists
of patients or caregivers. Law enforcement personnel
may contact the MMMP only to verify if a patient or
caregiver registration card is valid. The MMMP will
tell law enforcement staff if the patient or
caregiver is registered. The MMMP will disclose
patient information to others only at the specific
written request of the patient. MMMP computer files
are secure and paper files are kept locked when not
a patient withdraw from the program?
Answer: Yes. A patient must submit a written
statement that he or she wishes to withdraw from the
MMMP. The MMMP will request that all cards be
returned and the file will be closed. The patient's
card and all cards associated will be voided. It is
the responsibility of the patient to notify his or
her caregiver, if applicable, that his or her card
is no longer valid. It is the patient's
responsibility to collect all cards associated with
his or her patient card and return them to the
Department. If the Department is notified by the
patient that he or she would like to withdraw from
the program, the Department shall notify the primary
caregiver by mail at the address of record informing
the caregiver that his or her card is no longer
valid and must be returned to the Department
within fourteen (14) calendar days. All cards must
be returned to the Department within fourteen (14)
calendar days of the date that the Department was
notified of withdrawal. If the patient so chooses he
or she may reapply as a new patient at any time. In
order to reapply a patient must submit the required
documentation and application fee.
patients get a refund if they withdraw from the
Answer: Yes and no. No refund will be given
for patients who withdraw once their cards have been
issued. A refund may be given to a patient who
withdraws before cards are issued.
Question: Do I
have to tell the MMMP if I change my mailing address
or change my designated primary caregiver?
Answer: The answer to these questions is
"yes". You are required to tell the MMMP in writing
of any such changes within 14 days of the change.
The MMMP does not accept changes of information over
the telephone. The MMMP only accepts written changes
about the patient's name, the patient's address, the
patient's telephone number, the patient's physician,
or the patient's primary caregiver. There is a
$10.00 fee for issuance of a new registry card. Your
new card reflects the changes you have requested.
Your changes will be made in our computer database
and will be put in your file. You will be protected
from civil and criminal penalties for these changes.
If you change your caregiver, you will be asked to
return your old caregiver card within 14 days.
Do I get a prescription from my doctor?
Answer: The federal government
classifies marihuana as a Schedule 1 drug, which
means that licensed medical practitioners cannot
prescribe it. Your physician must provide written
certification of a "debilitating medical condition"
and can only recommend the use of medical marihuana.
Where do I get the seeds or plants to start growing
Answer: The MMMP is not a resource for the
growing process and does not have information to
give to patients.
can't I go to a pharmacy to fill a prescription for
Answer: Pharmacies can only dispense
medications "prescribed" by licensed physicians. The
federal government classifies marihuana as a
Schedule I drug, which means licensed physicians
cannot prescribe it.
doctors get in trouble for discussing medical
Answer: Not under
Michigan state law. A physician
may not be arrested, prosecuted or penalized in any
manner, or be denied any right or privilege,
including but not limited to civil penalty or
disciplinary action by the Board of Medicine or
Board of Osteopathic Medicine.
I am too ill to grow my own medical
marihuana. What can I do?
Answer: The MMMA provides for a system
of designated caregivers. The caregiver can acquire
2.5 ounces of usable marihuana and grow up to 12
marihuana plants for a qualifying patient. The
caregiver may assist up to 5 patients. The caregiver
must sign a statement agreeing to provide marihuana
only to the qualifying patients who have named the
individual as their caregiver. The caregiver's name,
address, birth date and social security number must
be provided to the state at the time of a patient's
registration. The Department will issue a registry
identification card to the caregiver who is named by
a qualifying patient on his/her application. The
Department may not issue a registry identification
card to a proposed caregiver who has previously been
convicted of a felony drug offense. The Department
will verify through a background check with the
Michigan State Police that the designated caregiver
has no disqualifying felony drug conviction. A
caregiver may receive reasonable compensation for
services provided to assist with a qualifying
patient's medical use of marihuana.
can ingest medical marihuana?
Answer: Under the MMMA, only a person with a
qualifying debilitating medical condition who has
obtained a valid MMMP card is exempt from criminal
laws of the state for engaging in the medical use of
marihuana as justified to mitigate the symptoms or
effects of the person's debilitating medical
are the laws and rules of the MMMA enforced?
Answer: The MMMP enforces the registration
process making sure applications are complete before
issuing a registry identification card, terminating
incomplete or fraudulent applications, and revoking
cards if individuals commit violations of the MMMA.
The MMMP verifies the validity of a registration
card of patients and caregivers with local and state
law enforcement personnel if they call the MMMP
requesting such information. Local and state law
enforcement personnel may take any action they
believe is necessary to enforce the criminal laws of
the state, including violations of the MMMA. Local
and state law enforcement actions may vary. The
MMMP has no authority to direct the activities of
local and state law enforcement agencies.
the MMMP give me legal advice?
Answer: No. If you have questions concerning
compliance with the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act,
you may wish to consult with an attorney.
Will paraphernalia associated with my medical use be
Answer: Yes, in Section 4 of the MMMA,
asserting medical use of your "paraphernalia
relating to the consumption of marihuana" is an
the police search me just for having a patient
Answer: No, not under
Michigan law. Possession of, or
application for, a registry identification card does
not alone constitute probable cause to search the
person or property of the person possessing or
applying for the registry identification card or
otherwise subject the person or property to
inspection by any governmental agency, including a
law enforcement agency.
Will my medical insurance cover medical marihuana?
Answer: Probably not. The MMMA does not
require a government medical assistance program or
commercial or non-profit health insurer to reimburse
a person for costs associated with the medical use
I use medical marihuana at work?
Answer: This is up to the employer. Even if
you are a registered patient, your employer may
still prohibit medical marihuana use in the
I live in a nursing home, assisted living facility,
or a retirement home, can I consume medical
Answer: Presuming you are registered with
the state patient registry and carrying your
registry identification card, the law does not
specifically prohibit the use of medical marihuana
in those settings. However, the facility or home may
have prohibitions. Therefore, you must verify with
the facility if using medical marihuana is permitted
and under what circumstances or conditions.
Where can I consume medical marihuana?
Answer: Presuming you are registered with the
state patient registry and carrying your registry
identification card, you may consume medical
marihuana on your property or elsewhere. However,
the law does not permit any person to do any of the
(1) Undertake any task under the influence of
marihuana, when doing so would constitute negligence
or professional malpractice.
(2) Possess marihuana, or otherwise engage in the
medical use of marihuana:
(a) in a school bus;
(b) on the grounds of any preschool or primary or
secondary school; or
(c) in any correctional facility.
(3) Smoke marihuana:
(a) on any form of public transportation; or
(b) in any public place.
(4) Operate, navigate, or be in actual physical
control of any motor vehicle, aircraft, or motorboat
while under the influence of marihuana.
live within 1000 feet of a school, AKA a "drug free
zone". Can I still grow and/or possess my medical
Answer: The MMMA does not address this issue.
You may wish to contact an attorney about this
Question: Do I
have to tell my landlord that I am a patient in the
MMMP? Can my landlord evict me if I am a patient in
the MMMP and have my grow site in my rental housing?
Can I live in subsidized housing and be a patient in
Answer: It is up to you to decide whether or
not to tell your landlord that you are a patient in
the MMMP. Nothing in the MMMA specifically addresses
whether or not you can be evicted because you are a
patient in the MMMP, even if you have only the
amount of medical marihuana allowed by law. Nothing
in the MMMA specifically addresses whether or not a
person can be an MMMP patient and live in subsidized
housing. If you have questions about these important
issues, you may wish to talk to an attorney to learn
about your rights and protections.
should I tell my employer if I am subjected to a
Answer: The MMMA states that employers are
not required to accommodate employees who use
medical marihuana. You may wish to consult an
attorney about whether or not to tell your employer
that you are a patient in the MMMP. A patient may
contact the MMMP in writing to ask the program to
release information about the patient's registration
to an employer.
I use marihuana while on parole/probation if I have
an MMMP card?
Answer: The authorities that are responsible
for your probation/parole/post-prison supervision
can impose restrictions on your possession and use
of medical marihuana as a condition of your
supervision, even if you have a valid MMMP card.
Most offenders' supervision is subject to an "obey
all laws" condition. Since marihuana possession and
use is illegal under federal law, supervisory
authorities can sanction an offender for possessing
marihuana, even if he or she has an MMMP card.
Sanctions could result in your arrest and return to
jail. If you are on probation, parole, post-prison
supervision, or other form of conditional
supervision for conviction of a crime, you should
consult with your parole and probation officer
regarding whether your possession or use of
marihuana may subject you to sanction for violation
of the conditions of your supervision." The MMMP
will revoke the card of a cardholder if a court
issues an order that prohibits the cardholder from
participating in the medical use of marihuana or
otherwise participating in the MMMP.
am a valid medical marihuana patient under another
state's law. Am I protected?
Answer: Yes, under Section 4(j) of the MMMA,
a registry identification card or its equivalent
issued by another state government to permit the
medical use of marihuana by a qualifying patient or
to permit a person to assist with a qualify
patient's medical use of marihuana has the same
force and effect as a registry identification card
issued by the Department.
the MMMA recognized by other states? Can I travel to
another state with medical marihuana and my MMMP
registry identification card and not be arrested or
charged with civil or criminal penalties?
Answer: At this time, the MMMP is not aware
of any "reciprocity" agreements with any other
states to honor the Michigan
law. This includes even those states
that have medical marihuana laws of their own, such
and California. Because medical
marihuana programs vary by state, you may want to
contact the state you are traveling to for
information on their laws.
patients form growing cooperatives?
Answer: The law does not address this.
Consult with your local law enforcement officer or
Question: How do I become a
Answer: The MMMA defines a "Primary
Caregiver" as a person who is at least 21 years old
and who has agreed to assist with a patient's
medical use of marihuana and who has never been
convicted of a felony involving illegal drugs.
Therefore, the qualifying patient (applicant or
registrant) and you must complete a "Caregiver
Attestation" to be submitted by the qualifying
Question: What if my registry ID
card was lost or stolen?
Answer: You would submit a signed
statement attesting to the fact that your registry
ID card has been lost or stolen (whichever applies)
requesting a replacement card. Include your full
name clearly written, copy of your identification,
and $10.00 check or money order made payable to
"State of Michigan-MMMP." Mail the statement and fee
Michigan Department of Community Health
Medical Marihuana Registry
PO Box 30083
Lansing, MI 48909