Virginia Marijuana Legalization


As of July 1, 2021, simple possession of marijuana and limited home cultivation is officially legal in Virginia. Those over 21 will be allowed to possess up to an ounce of marijuana and can also grow up to four plants per household.  However, there are several things Virginians can’t do under legalization, including smoking pot in public, possessing it on school grounds and using it under the age of 21. 

As it stands, buying and selling marijuana is expected to be banned until 2024.

What is legal on July 1, 2021?


  • Adults 21 years and older will be allowed to possess not more than one ounce of cannabis for personal use.
  • Generally, adults 21 years and older will be allowed to use marijuana in private residences. However, nothing prohibits the owner of a private residence from restricting the use of marijuana on its premises.
  • Adults 21 and over will also be allowed to grow up to four plants per household (not per person), according to specified requirements (see “Home Cultivation” below).
  • “Adult sharing” or transferring one ounce or less of marijuana between persons who are 21 years or older without remuneration will be legal. "Adult sharing" does not include instances in which (i) marijuana is given away contemporaneously with another reciprocal transaction between the same parties; (ii) a gift of marijuana is offered or advertised in conjunction with an offer for the sale of goods or services; or (iii) a gift of marijuana is contingent upon a separate reciprocal transaction for goods or services.


  • It will remain illegal for anyone to possess more than one ounce of marijuana. Individuals found guilty of possessing more than one ounce, but not more than one pound of marijuana are subject to a civil penalty of not more than $25. Individuals found guilty of possessing more than one pound are subject to a felony.
  • It will remain illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to consume, purchase, or possess marijuana, or to attempt to consume, purchase or possess any amount of marijuana.
  • It will remain illegal to distribute or sell marijuana, and/or to possess any amount of marijuana with the intent to distribute or sell it. This prohibition applies equally to businesses, which will not be permitted to sell, “gift,” or in any other way distribute marijuana. For more information on how to obtain a license to sell marijuana in the future, see Adult-Use Cannabis Commercial Sales below.
  • Existing safety measures will remain in place, including prohibiting use of marijuana while driving a motor vehicle or while being a passenger in a motor vehicle being driven; possessing marijuana on school grounds, while operating a school bus, in a motor vehicle transporting passengers for hire, or in a commercial vehicle.
  • It will remain illegal to consume marijuana or offer marijuana to another person in any public place.

Here are the rules Virginians have to follow to participate in home cultivation and grow the plants legally. 

  • Grown marijuana must be for personal use only
  • Virginians can grow up to four plants per household, not per person
  • Plants must be grown at a person's primary or main residence
  • Plants must be tagged with the following information: a name, driver's license or state ID number, and a notice that the plant is for personal use
  • Plants cannot be visible from public view
  • Possession is only legal for Virginians 21 years of age or older, meaning those interested in home cultivation must take steps to prevent those plants from being accessible to people younger than the legal age
  • It remains illegal to sell or distribute marijuana to friends
  • Adult sharing will be legal, where Virginians of legal age may freely share up to an ounce of marijuana with no transaction of goods or money
  • "Illegal" sales include seeds, clones (young plants) flower, or any other parts of the marijuana plant.