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West Virginia Cannabis Laws Explained
On April 19, 2017, West Virginia became the 29th state to legalize medical cannabis with Senate Bill 386. Signed into law by Governor Jim Justice, the bill created the West Virginia Medical Cannabis Act.
The state’s first medical marijuana dispensary opened four years later in November 2021, providing cannabis to patients for medical use.
This post breaks down important laws for cannabis dispensaries in the state of West Virginia.
You can read the fully updated West Virginia medical cannabis rules here.
West Virginia marijuana laws at a glance
The Office of Medical Cannabis oversees WV medical marijuana
Edibles are not legal in West Virginia
Cannabis has not been decriminalized in West Virginia and possession of any amount of cannabis is considered a misdemeanor
Patients may purchase up to a 30-day supply of cannabis
Dispensaries cannot be within 1,000 ft. of a school
Medical marijuana organizations are taxed 10% of the gross receipts of each reporting quarter
West Virginia uses Metrc as the state's cannabis track and trace program
Lawful use of medical cannabis
§16A-3-2. Lawful use of medical cannabis.
(a) Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, the use or possession of medical cannabis as set forth in this act is lawful within this state, subject to the following conditions:
(1) Medical cannabis may only be dispensed to:
(A) a patient who receives a certification from a practitioner and is in possession of a valid identification card issued by the bureau; and
(B) a caregiver who is in possession of a valid identification card issued by the bureau.
(2) Subject to rules promulgated under this act, medical cannabis may only be dispensed to a patient or caregiver in the following forms:
(C) Topical forms, including gels, creams or ointments;
(D) A form medically appropriate for administration by vaporization or nebulization, excluding dry leaf or plant form until dry leaf or plant forms become acceptable under rules adopted by the bureau;
(F) Liquid; or
(G) Dermal patch.
(3) Unless otherwise provided in rules adopted by the bureau under section two, article eleven of this chapter, medical cannabis may not be dispensed to a patient or a caregiver in dry leaf or plant form.
(4) An individual may not act as a caregiver for more than five patients.
(5) A patient may designate up to two caregivers at any one time.
(6) Medical cannabis that has not been used by the patient shall be kept in the original package in which it was dispensed.
(7) A patient or caregiver shall possess an identification card whenever the patient or caregiver is in possession of medical cannabis.
(8) Products packaged by a grower/processor or sold by a dispensary shall only be identified by the name of the grower/processor, the name of the dispensary, the form and species of medical cannabis, the percentage of tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabinol contained in the product.
Here’s who can purchase and possess medical cannabis:
A patient with a valid medical ID card
A patient’s official caregiver
Patients can designate two caregivers to purchase their medicine
Note: A caregiver can’t care for more than five patients at a time.
Operators can only dispense medical marijuana in the following forms:
Topicals (gels, creams, or lotions)
Note: Edibles are not legal in West Virginia.
Disposal and packaging rules:
Unused medical marijuana products must stay in their original packaging
All products must be labeled appropriately to include the name of the grower or processor, the dispensary, the specific form and species, and the percentage of THC and CBD
Applications and permits
§16A-6-5. Application and issuance.
(a) Duty to report. — An applicant to be a grower/processor or to operate a dispensary is under a continuing duty to:
(1) Report to the bureau any change in facts or circumstances reflected in the application or any newly discovered or occurring fact or circumstance which is required to be included in the application, including a change in control of the medical cannabis organization.
(2) Report to law enforcement, within twenty-four hours, any loss or theft of medical cannabis.
(3) Submit to announced or unannounced inspections by the bureau of the facilities for growing, processing, dispensing or selling medical cannabis, including all records of the organization.
(b) Additional information. — If the bureau is not satisfied that the applicant should be issued a permit, the bureau shall notify the applicant in writing of the factors for which further documentation is required. Within thirty days of the receipt of the notification, the applicant may submit additional material to the bureau.
§16A-6-6. Fees and other requirements.
The following apply:
(1) For a grower or processor:
(A) An initial application fee in the amount of $5,000 shall be paid. The fee is nonrefundable.
(B) A fee for a permit as a grower/processor in the amount of $50,000 shall be paid. The permit shall be valid for one year. Applicants shall submit the permit fee at the time of submission of the application. The fee shall be returned if the permit is not granted.
(C) A renewal fee for the permit as a grower/processor in the amount of $5,000 shall be paid and shall cover renewal for all locations. The renewal fee shall be returned if the renewal is not granted.
(D) An application to renew a permit must be filed with the bureau not more than six months nor less than four months prior to expiration.
(E) All fees shall be paid by certified check or money order.
(2) For a dispensary:
(A) An initial application fee in the amount of $2,500 shall be paid. The fee is nonrefundable.
(B) A permit fee for a dispensary shall be $10,000 for each location. The period of the permit is one year. An applicant shall submit the permit fee at the time of submission of the application. The fee shall be returned if the application is not granted.
(C) A renewal fee for the permit as a dispensary in the amount of $2,500 shall be paid. The fee shall be returned if the renewal is not granted and shall cover renewal for all locations.
(D) An application to renew a permit must be filed with the bureau not more than six months nor less than four months prior to expiration.
(E) All fees shall be paid by certified check or money order.
(3) A fee of $250 shall be required when amending the application to indicate relocation within this state or the addition or deletion of approved activities by the medical cannabis organization.
(4) Fees payable under this section shall be deposited into the fund.
A permit issued by the bureau to a medical cannabis organization shall be effective only for that organization and shall specify the following:
(1) The name and address of the medical cannabis organization.
(2) The activities of the medical cannabis organization permitted under this act.
(3) The land, buildings, facilities or location to be used by the medical cannabis organization.
(4) Any other information required by the bureau.
The bureau may approve an application from a medical cannabis organization to relocate within this state or to add or delete activities or facilities.
§16A-6-9. Terms of permit.
A permit issued by the bureau shall be valid for one year from the date of issuance.
§16A-6-10. Permit renewals.
(a) Renewal. — An application for renewal shall include the following information:
(1) Any material change in the information provided by the medical cannabis organization in a prior application or renewal of a permit.
(2) Any charge or initiated, pending or concluded investigation, during the period of the permit, by any governmental or administrative agency with respect to:
(A) Any incident involving the theft, loss or possible diversion of medical cannabis grown, processed or dispensed by the applicant; and
(B) Compliance by the applicant with the laws of this state with respect to any substance listed under article two, chapter sixty-a of this code.
(b) Approval. — The bureau shall renew a permit unless the bureau determines that:
(1) The applicant is unlikely to maintain or be able to maintain effective control against diversion of medical cannabis.
(2) The applicant is unlikely to comply with all laws of this state applicable to the activities in which it may engage under the permit.
(c) Nonrenewal decision. — The denial or nonrenewal shall specify in detail how the applicant has not satisfied the bureau’s requirements for renewal. Within thirty days of the bureau’s decision, the applicant may submit additional material to the bureau or demand a hearing, or both. If a hearing is demanded, the bureau shall fix a date as soon as practicable.
(a) Application. — An application for a grower, processor or dispensary permit to grow, process or dispense medical cannabis shall be in a form and manner prescribed by the bureau and shall include:
(1) Verification of all principals, operators, financial backers or employees of a medical cannabis grower/processor or dispensary.
(2) A description of responsibilities as a principal, operator, financial backer or employee.
(3) Any release necessary to obtain information from governmental agencies, employers and other organizations.
(4) A criminal history record check. Medical cannabis organizations applying for a permit shall submit fingerprints of principals, financial backers, operators and employees to the West Virginia State Police for the purpose of obtaining criminal history record checks and the West Virginia State Police or its authorized agent shall submit the fingerprints to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for the purpose of verifying the identity of the principals, financial backers, operators and employees and obtaining a current record of any criminal arrests and convictions. Any criminal history record information relating to principals, financial backers, operators and employees obtained under this section by the bureau may be interpreted and used by the bureau only to determine the principal’s, financial backer’s, operator’s and employee’s character, fitness and suitability to serve as a principal, financial backer, operator and employee under this act. This subdivision shall not apply to an owner of securities in a publicly traded corporation if the bureau determines that the owner of the securities is not substantially involved in the activities of the medical cannabis organization.
(5) Details relating to a similar license, permit or other authorization obtained in another jurisdiction, including any suspensions, revocations or discipline in that jurisdiction.
(6) A description of the business activities in which it intends to engage as a medical cannabis organization.
(7) A statement that the applicant:
(A) Is of good moral character. For purposes of this subparagraph, an applicant shall include each financial backer, operator, employee and principal of the medical cannabis organization.
(B) Possesses the ability to obtain in an expeditious manner the right to use sufficient land, buildings and other premises and equipment to properly carry on the activity described in the application and any proposed location for a facility.
(C) Is able to maintain effective security and control to prevent diversion, abuse and other illegal conduct relating to medical cannabis.
(D) Is able to comply with all applicable State laws and rules relating to the activities in which it intends to engage under this act.
(8) The name, residential address and title of each financial backer and principal of the applicant. Each individual, or lawful representative of a legal entity, shall submit an affidavit with the application setting forth:
(A) Any position of management or ownership during the preceding ten years of a controlling interest in any other business, located inside or outside this state, manufacturing or distributing controlled substances.
(B) Whether the person or business has been convicted of a criminal offense graded higher than a summary offense or has had a permit relating to medical cannabis suspended or revoked in any administrative or judicial proceeding.
(9) Any other information the bureau may require.
(b) Notice. — An application shall include notice that a false statement made in the application is punishable under the applicable provisions of law.
§16A-6-3. Granting of permit
(a) The bureau may grant or deny a permit to a grower, processor, or dispensary. In making a decision under this subsection, the bureau shall determine that:
(1) The applicant will maintain effective control of and prevent diversion of medical cannabis.
(2) The applicant will comply with all applicable laws of this state.
(3) The applicant is ready, willing, and able to properly carry on the activity for which a permit is sought.
(4) The applicant possesses the ability to obtain in an expeditious manner sufficient land, buildings, and equipment to properly grow, process, or dispense medical cannabis.
(5) It is in the public interest to grant the permit.
(6) The applicant, including the financial backer or principal, is of good moral character and has the financial fitness necessary to operate.
(7) The applicant is able to implement and maintain security, tracking, recordkeeping, and surveillance systems relating to the acquisition, possession, growth, manufacture, sale, delivery, transportation, distribution, or the dispensing of medical cannabis as required by the bureau: Provided, That the bureau may require that a medical cannabis organization maintain motion activated video surveillance at a dispensary, grower or processor facility and that a medical cannabis organization retain the recordings therefrom onsite or offsite for a period not to exceed 180 days, unless otherwise required for investigative or litigation purposes.
(8) The applicant satisfies any other conditions as determined by the bureau.
(b) Nontransferability. — A permit issued under this chapter shall be nontransferable.
(c) Privilege. — The issuance or renewal of a permit shall be a revocable privilege.
(d) Dispensary location. — The bureau shall consider the following when issuing a dispensary permit:
(1) Geographic location;
(2) Regional population;
(3) The number of patients suffering from serious medical conditions;
(4) The types of serious medical conditions;
(5) Access to public transportation;
(6) Approval by local health departments;
(7) Whether the county has disallowed the location of a grower, processor, or dispensary; and
(8) Any other factor the bureau deems relevant.
(e) Application procedure. — The bureau shall establish a procedure for the fair and objective evaluation of all applications for all medical cannabis organization permits. The evaluations shall score each applicant numerically according to standards set forth in this chapter.
Cannabis business applicants must complete the following:
Verification and job descriptions of all principal operators of the business, including financial backers and employees
A criminal background check and fingerprints of everyone at the organization
A description of the organization’s intended business activities
Proof that the organization has the right to use, or can quickly obtain the right to use the land, buildings and equipment to carry out licensing activities
A plan for security and control of the product on that property
Application fees for growers and processors:
Nonrefundable $5,000 initial application fee
$50,000 permit fee, submitted at the time of application that’s refundable if the applicant is not granted a permit. If granted a permit, the permit will be valid for one year
Renewal fees are $5,000 per location and refundable if the permit isn’t renewed
Renewals must be submitted 4-6 months before the permit expires
All fees should be paid with a check or money order
Dispensary application fees:
Nonrefundable $2,500 initial application fee
$10,000 permit fee for each location, submitted at the time of the application that’s refundable if the applicant is not granted a permit. If granted a permit, the permit will be valid for one year
A $2,500 permit renewal fee covering all locations, refundable if the permit isn’t renewed
Once submitted, amending the application costs $250
License renewals require the following information:
Any material change to the original information provided
Any charge or initiated, pending, or concluded investigation of theft, loss, or diversion
Compliance with state law information
If denied, renewal applicants have 30 days to submit additional material, demand a hearing or both
When making their permit selections, the bureau reviews the following:
Ability to implement and maintain security, tracking, and recordkeeping
The number of patients suffering from severe medical conditions
The types of serious medical conditions
Access to public transportation
Approval by local health departments
Whether the county has disallowed the location of a grower, processor, or dispensary
Any other factor the bureau deems relevant
Dispensing to patients and caregivers
§16A-8-1. Dispensing to patients and caregivers.
(a) General rule. — A dispensary that has been issued a permit under §16A-6-1 et seq. of this code may lawfully dispense medical cannabis to a patient or caregiver upon presentation to the dispensary of a valid identification card for that patient or caregiver. The dispensary shall provide to the patient or caregiver a receipt, as appropriate. The receipt shall include all of the following:
(1) The name, address, and any identification number assigned to the dispensary by the bureau.
(2) The name and address of the patient and caregiver.
(3) The date the medical cannabis was dispensed.
(4) Any requirement or limitation by the practitioner as to the form of medical cannabis for the patient.
(5) The form and the quantity of medical cannabis dispensed.
(b) Filing with bureau. — Prior to dispensing medical cannabis to a patient or caregiver, the dispensary shall file the receipt information with the bureau utilizing the electronic tracking system. When filing receipts under this subsection, the dispensary shall dispose of any electronically recorded certification information as provided by rule.
(c) Limitations. — No dispensary may dispense to a patient or caregiver:
(1) A quantity of medical cannabis greater than that which the patient or caregiver is permitted to possess under the certification; or
(2) A form of medical cannabis prohibited by this act.
(d) Supply. — When dispensing medical cannabis to a patient or caregiver, the dispensary may not dispense an amount greater than a 30-day supply until the patient has exhausted all but a seven-day supply provided pursuant to §16A-4-5 of this code.
(e)Verification. — Prior to dispensing medical cannabis to a patient or caregiver, the dispensary shall verify the information in subsections (d) and (f) of this section by consulting the electronic tracking system included in the bureau’s electronic database established under §16A-3-1 of this code and the dispensary tracking system under §16A-7-1 of this code.
(f) Form of medical cannabis. — Medical cannabis dispensed to a patient or caregiver by a dispensary shall conform to any requirement or limitation set by the practitioner as to the form of medical cannabis for the patient.
(g) Safety insert. — When a dispensary dispenses medical cannabis to a patient or caregiver, the dispensary shall provide to that patient or caregiver, as appropriate, a safety insert. The insert shall be developed and approved by the bureau. The insert shall provide the following information:
(1) Lawful methods for administering medical cannabis in individual doses.
(2) Any potential dangers stemming from the use of medical cannabis.
(3) How to recognize what may be problematic usage of medical cannabis and how to obtain appropriate services or treatment for problematic usage.
(4) How to prevent or deter the misuse of medical cannabis by minors or others.
(5) Any other information as determined by the bureau.
(h) Sealed and labeled package. — Medical cannabis shall be dispensed by a dispensary to a patient or caregiver in a sealed, properly labeled, and child-resistant package. The labeling shall contain the following:
(1) The information required to be included in the receipt provided to the patient or caregiver, as appropriate, by the dispensary.
(2) The packaging date.
(3) Any applicable date by which the medical cannabis should be used.
(4) A warning stating:
"This product is for medicinal use only. Women should not consume during pregnancy or while breastfeeding except on the advice of the practitioner who issued the certification and, in the case of breastfeeding, the infant’s pediatrician. This product might impair the ability to drive or operate heavy machinery. Keep out of reach of children."
(5) The amount of individual doses contained within the package and the species and percentage of tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol.
(6) A warning that the medical cannabis must be kept in the original container in which it was dispensed.
(7) A warning that unauthorized use is unlawful and will subject the person to criminal penalties.
(8) Any other information required by the bureau.
Dispensary facility requirements:
§16A-8-2. Facility requirements.
(a) General rule. —
(1) A dispensary may only dispense medical cannabis in an indoor, enclosed, secure facility located within this state, as determined by the bureau.
(2) A dispensary may not operate on the same site as a facility used for growing and processing medical cannabis.
(3) A dispensary may not be located within one thousand feet of the property line of a public, private or parochial school or a daycare center.
(4) A dispensary may, pursuant to bureau conditions and limitations, sell medical devices and instruments which are needed to administer medical cannabis under this act.
(b) Adjustment or waiver of prohibition. — The bureau may amend a prohibition under subsection (a)(3) of this section if it is shown by clear and convincing evidence that the amendment is necessary to provide adequate access to patients. An amendment may include additional security, physical plant of a facility or other conditions necessary to protect children.
A dispensary shall post a copy of its permit in a location within its facility in a manner that is easily observable by patients, caregivers, law enforcement officers and agents of the bureau.
§64-112-8. Labels and safety inserts.
8.1. Medical cannabis products dispensed by a dispensary must only be identified by the name of the grower/processor, the name of the dispensary, the form and species of medical cannabis, the percentage of THC and CBD contained in the medical cannabis product, and any other labeling required by the bureau.
8.2. A dispensary must dispense medical cannabis to a patient or caregiver in a sealed and properly labeled package.
8.3. The dispensary must inspect the label to ensure that the label contains the following:8.3.a. The information required to be included in the receipt in section 4 of this rule.8.3.b. The packaging date.8.3.c. A use by or expiration date.8.3.d. The following warning stating: "This product is for medicinal use only. Women should not consume during pregnancy or while breastfeeding except on the advice of the practitioner who issued the certification and, in the case of breastfeeding, the infant's pediatrician. This product might impair the ability to drive or operate heavy machinery. Keep out of reach of children."8.3.e. The number of individual doses contained within the package and the species and percentage of THC and CBD.8.3.f. A warning that the medical cannabis must be kept in the original container in which it was dispensed.8.3.g. A warning that unauthorized use is unlawful and will subject the purchaser or user to criminal penalties.8.3.h. Any other information required by the bureau.
8.4. The dispensary must inspect the label to ensure that the label does not bear:8.4.a. Any resemblance to the trademarked, characteristic, or product-specialized packaging of any commercially available food or beverage product.8.4.b. Any statement, artwork, or design that could reasonably lead an individual to believe that the package contains anything other than medical cannabis.8.4.c. Any seal, flag, crest, coat of arms, or other insignia that could reasonably mislead an individual to believe that the product has been endorsed, manufactured, or approved for use by any state, county, or municipality or any agency thereof.8.4.d. Any cartoon, color scheme, image, graphic, or feature that might make the package attractive to children.
8.5. When a dispensary dispenses medical cannabis to a patient or caregiver, the dispensary must also provide the patient or caregiver with a safety insert developed and approved by the bureau that includes the following information:8.5.a. The method or methods for administering individual doses of medical cannabis.8.5.b. Any potential dangers stemming from the use of medical cannabis.8.5.c. How to recognize what may be problematic usage of medical cannabis and how to obtain appropriate services or treatment for problematic usage.8.5.d. The side effects and contraindications associated with medical cannabis, if any, which may cause harm to the patient.8.5.e. How to prevent or deter the misuse of medical cannabis by an individual under 18 years of age or others.8.5.f. Any other information determined by the bureau to be relevant to enhance patient safety.
Verified patients or caregivers must receive a receipt for each transaction that includes:
Name, address, and the dispensary’s ID number
Name and address of the patient and caregiver
Date of purchase
Any requirement from practitioners regarding the type of the product, including limitations.
The form and quantity of the medical cannabis dispensed
Receipt information must be electronically documented for the bureau to track. Dispensaries cannot keep records, physically or electronically, of patient medical certificate information.
Patients cannot purchase more than a 30-day supply of cannabis, in a form not prescribed, or in an amount greater than their practitioner’s prescribed limits.
A dispensary staff member must verify all patient and caregiver information before a transaction.
Package labels must include:
Information included on a patient/caregiver receipt
Packaging date and use by date
Products must stay in their original container
Required warning statements, written exactly as defined in the Act
Amount of individual doses contained within the package, the species and percentages of THC and CBD in the products
Labels cannot contain:
A trademark resembling food or beverage
Misleading artwork or designs
Any insignia, seal, or crest, that may lead an individual to believe it has been endorsed by a state, county, or municipality.
Cartoons, colors, or imagery that might appeal to children
The following are the facility requirements for a dispensary:
A dispensary can only sell medical cannabis in an indoor, enclosed, and secure facility within the state
A growing or processing facility can’t be on the same site as the dispensary
A dispensary building can’t be within 1,000 ft of a public, private, or school, or daycare center
Medical dispensaries can sell paraphernalia for the use of medical cannabis
Dispensaries must conspicuously display a copy of their permit for patients, caregivers, law enforcement officers, and agents of the bureau
Security and surveillance requirements
§64-112-11. Security and surveillance.
11.1. A dispensary must have security and surveillance systems, utilizing commercial-grade equipment, to prevent unauthorized entry, and to prevent and detect an adverse loss. The security and surveillance systems must include the following:11.1.a. A professionally monitored security alarm system that includes the following:11.1.a.1. Coverage of all facility entrances and exits; rooms with exterior windows, exterior walls, roof hatches or skylights; storage rooms, including those that contain medical cannabis, and safes; and the perimeter of the facility.11.1.a.2. A silent security alarm system signal, known as a duress alarm, generated by the entry of a designated code into an arming station in order to signal that the alarm user is being forced to turn off the system.11.1.a.3. An audible security alarm system signal, known as a panic alarm, generated by the manual activation of a device intended to signal a life-threatening or emergency situation requiring law enforcement response.11.1.a.4. A silent alarm signal, known as a holdup alarm, generated by the manual activation of a device intended to signal a robbery in progress.11.1.a.5. An electrical, electronic, mechanical, or other device capable of being programmed to send a prerecorded voice message requesting dispatch, when activated, over a telephone line, radio, or other communication system to a law enforcement, public safety or emergency services agency.11.1.a.6. A failure notification system that provides an audible, text, or visual notification of any failure in the systems. The failure notification system must provide by telephone, e-mail, or text message an alert to a designated security person within the facility within five minutes after the failure.11.1.a.7. Smoke and fire alarms.11.1.a.8. Auxiliary power sufficient to maintain security and surveillance systems for at least 48 hours following a power outage.11.1.a.9. The ability to ensure all access doors are not solely controlled by an electronic access panel to prevent locks from becoming released during a power outage.11.1.a.10. Motion detectors.11.1.b. A professionally monitored security and surveillance system that is operational 24 hours a day, seven days a week and records all activity in images capable of clearly revealing facial detail. The security and surveillance system must include the following:11.1.b.1. Fixed camera placement that allows for a clear image of all individuals and activities in and around the following:11.1.b.1.A. Any area of the facility where medical cannabis is loaded or unloaded into or from transport vehicles.11.1.b.1.B. Entrances to and exits from the facility. Entrances and exits must be recorded from both indoor and outdoor vantage points.11.1.b.1.C. Rooms with exterior windows, exterior walls, roof hatches, or skylights and storage rooms, including those that may contain medical cannabis and safes.11.1.b.1.D. Five feet from the exterior of the perimeter of the facility.11.1.b.1.E. All limited access areas.11.1.b.2. Auxiliary power sufficient to maintain security and surveillance systems for at least 48 hours following a power outage.11.1.b.3. Ability to operate under the normal lighting conditions of each area under surveillance.11.1.b.4. Ability to immediately produce a clear, color, still photograph in a digital format that meets the requirements of this subsection.11.1.c. Ability to clearly and accurately display the date and time. The date and time must be synchronized and set correctly and may not significantly obscure the picture.11.1.d. Ability to record all images captured by each surveillance camera for a minimum of two years in a format that may be easily accessed for investigative purposes. The recordings must be kept:11.1.d.1. At the facility:11.1.d.1.A. In a locked cabinet, closet or other secure place to protect it from tampering or theft; and11.1.d.1.B. In a limited access area or other room to which access is limited to authorized individuals; or11.1.d.2. At a secure location other than the location of the facility if approved by the bureau.11.1.e. A security alarm system separate from the facility's primary security system covering the limited access area or other room where the recordings under subdivision 12.1.d. are stored. The separate security alarm system must meet the same requirements as the facility's primary security alarm system.11.2. The following apply regarding the inspection, servicing or alteration of, and the upgrade to, the dispensary facility's security and surveillance systems:11.2.a. The systems must be inspected, and all devices tested once every year by a qualified alarm system vendor and a qualified surveillance system vendor, as approved by the bureau.11.2.b. The dispensary must conduct maintenance inspections once every month to ensure that any repairs, alterations, or upgrades to the security and surveillance systems are made for the proper operation of the systems.11.2.c. The dispensary must retain at the facility, for at least four years, records of all inspections, servicing, alterations, and upgrades performed on the systems and must make the records available to the bureau and its authorized agents within two business days following a request.11.2.d. In the event of a mechanical malfunction of the security or surveillance system that the dispensary anticipates will exceed a four-hour period, the dispensary must notify the bureau immediately and, with bureau approval, provide alternative security measures that may include closure of the facility.11.2.e. The dispensary must designate an employee to continuously monitor the security and surveillance systems at the facility.11.2.f. The following apply regarding records retention:11.2.f.1. Within two business days following a request, a dispensary must provide up to four screen captures of an unaltered copy of a video surveillance recording to the bureau or its authorized agents, law enforcement, or other federal, state, or local government officials if necessary to perform the government officials' functions and duties.11.2.f.2. If a dispensary has been notified in writing by the bureau or its authorized agents, law enforcement, or other federal, state, or local government officials of a pending criminal or administrative investigation for which a recording may contain relevant information, the dispensary must retain an unaltered copy of the recording for two years or until the investigation or proceeding is closed or the entity conducting the investigation or proceeding notifies the dispensary that it is not necessary to retain the recording, whichever is longer.11.3. A dispensary must install commercial-grade, nonresidential doors and door locks on each external door of the facility. Keys or key codes for all doors must remain in the possession of designated authorized individuals.11.4. During all nonworking hours, all entrances to and exits from the facility must be securely locked.11.5. A dispensary must have an electronic back-up system for all electronic records.11.6. A dispensary must install lighting to ensure proper surveillance inside and outside of the facility.11.7. A dispensary must limit access to a room containing security and surveillance monitoring equipment to persons who are essential to maintaining security and surveillance operations; federal, state, and local law enforcement; security and surveillance system service employees; the bureau or its authorized agents; and other persons with the prior written approval of the bureau. The following apply:11.7.a. A dispensary must make available to the bureau or the bureau's authorized agents, upon request, a current list of authorized employees and service employees, or contractors who have access to any security and surveillance areas.11.7.b. A dispensary must keep security and surveillance rooms locked at all times and may not use these rooms for any other purpose or function.
To prevent unauthorized entry, a medical dispensary must have commercial-grade security and surveillance systems, including:
Professional alarm monitoring 24/7
Surveillance of all entrances and exits
Surveillance of all rooms with windows, skylights, storage rooms, safes, and all limited access areas
Surveillance covering five feet outside of the facility with fixed camera placement of any area where medical cannabis is loaded or unloaded
A silent alarm signaling the user is being forced to turn off the system
A holdup alarm intended to signal a robbery is in progress
A panic alarm for emergencies
A device that can send a pre-recorded message for help from law enforcement
A failure notification system that reports to a security person within 5 minutes of alarm failure
Smoke and fire alarms
A 48-hour power supply to keep security and surveillance systems operational during outages
The ability to manually lock/unlock doors if there is an electronic failure
Dispensaries need to keep records of surveillance for two years in a locked cabinet or closet
A separate security alarm system covering surveillance record storage, that meets the same requirements as the primary alarm system
All systems must be inspected and tested annually by a professional vendor, with proof of the inspections kept on-site for four years
Dispensaries should appoint a security employee to monitor the surveillance
Dispensaries must have commercial-grade doors and door locks protecting the exterior of the building
Keys or key codes to those doors must be kept by authorized staff
During closed hours, all entrances and exits to the facility should remain locked
Lighting needs to allow for visibility within the facility and on surveillance
A dispensary should keep the security room locked and off-limits except to those authorized, and not use the room for any other purpose but security
Transportation of medical cannabis
§64-112-15. Transportation of medical cannabis.
A dispensary may transport and deliver medical cannabis to a medical cannabis organization in this state in accordance with this section. The following apply:15.1.a. A dispensary may deliver medical cannabis to a medical cannabis organization only between 7:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. for the purposes of transferring medical cannabis among the permittee's dispensary locations and returning medical cannabis to a grower/processor.15.1.b. A dispensary may contract with a third-party contractor for delivery so long as the contractor complies with this section.15.1.c. A dispensary may not transport medical cannabis to any location outside of this state.15.1.d. A dispensary must use a global positioning system to ensure safe, efficient delivery of the medical cannabis to a medical cannabis organization.15.2. Vehicles permitted to transport medical cannabis must:15.2.a. Be equipped with a secure lockbox or locking cargo area.15.2.b. Have no markings that would either identify or indicate that the vehicle is being used to transport medical cannabis.15.2.c. Be capable of being temperature-controlled for perishable medical cannabis, as appropriate.15.2.d. Display current state inspection stickers and maintain a current state vehicle registration.15.2.e. Be insured in an amount that is commercially reasonable and appropriate.15.3. A transport vehicle must be staffed with a delivery team consisting of at least two individuals and comply with the following:15.3.a. At least one delivery team member must remain with the vehicle at all times that the vehicle contains medical cannabis.15.3.b. Each delivery team member must have access to a secure form of communication with the dispensary, such as a cellular telephone, at all times that the vehicle contains medical cannabis.15.3.c. Each delivery team member must carry an identification badge or card at all times and must, upon demand, produce it to the bureau or its authorized agents, law enforcement or other federal or state government officials if necessary, to perform the government officials' functions and duties.15.3.d. Each delivery team member must have a valid driver's license.15.3.e. While on duty, a delivery team member may not wear any clothing or symbols that may indicate ownership or possession of medical cannabis.15.4. Medical cannabis stored inside the transport vehicle may not be visible from the outside of the transport vehicle.15.5. Except as provided in subsection 15.8., a delivery team must proceed in a transport vehicle from the dispensary, where the medical cannabis is loaded, directly to the medical cannabis organization, where the medical cannabis is unloaded, without unnecessary delays. Notwithstanding the foregoing, a transport vehicle may make stops at multiple facilities, as appropriate, to deliver medical cannabis.15.6. A dispensary must immediately report to the bureau, either through a designated phone line established by the bureau or by electronic communication with the bureau in a manner prescribed by the bureau, any vehicle accidents, diversions, losses, or other reportable events that occur during transport of medical cannabis.15.7. A dispensary must notify the bureau daily of its delivery schedule, including routes and delivery times, either through a designated phone line established by the bureau or by electronic communication with the bureau in a manner prescribed by the bureau.15.8. A transport vehicle is subject to inspection by the bureau or its authorized agents, law enforcement, or other federal or state officials, if necessary to perform the government officials' functions and duties. A transport vehicle may be stopped and inspected along its delivery route or at any medical cannabis organization.
Cannabis transportation rules are as follows:
Cannabis transportation hours are from 7 am to 9 pm
Dispensaries can hire a third-party delivery contractor
Medical cannabis cannot leave the state
Dispensaries must use a GPS to track and ensure delivery
Delivery vehicles need to contain a lock box or locked cargo area so the product is concealed from the outside
Delivery vehicles cannot have markings to indicate they’re carrying cannabis
Delivery vehicles should have a temperature-controlled solution for perishable products
Like any car, delivery vehicles must show a current state inspection and registration
Delivery vehicles must be commercially insured
Delivery vehicles must be staffed by two personnel – one must stay in the vehicle to protect the products
Each delivery employee needs a device to communicate with the dispensary
Each delivery employee must have a valid driver’s license and carry their ID card at all times
Delivery drivers can’t make any stops outside of the planned deliveries
A dispensary should report any vehicle accidents, diversions, or losses immediately to the bureau
Dispensaries need to share their delivery routes and times daily via phone or electronic communication
Delivery vehicles may be inspected by the bureau or law enforcement along the route or at the medical cannabis organization
§16A-9-1. Tax on medical cannabis.
(a) Tax imposed. — For the privilege of engaging or continuing within this state in the business of a dispensary of medical cannabis, as defined in §16A-2-1 of this code, there is hereby levied upon and collected from every person exercising the privilege a privilege tax.
(b) Rate and measure of tax. — The rate of tax imposed by this section shall be 10 percent of the gross receipts the dispensary receives or accrues during the reporting period, depending upon its method of accounting for federal income tax purposes, from the sale of medical cannabis to a patient or to a caregiver. The tax imposed by this section shall not be added by the dispensary as a separate charge or line item on any sales slip, invoice, receipt, other statement, or memorandum of the price paid by a patient, or caregiver.
(c) Definitions. — For purposes of this article:
(1) "Gross receipts" means and includes the gross receipts, however denominated, derived from the sale, distribution, or transfer of medical cannabis, without any deduction on account of the cost of property sold; the cost of materials used to grow, process, or sell the medical cannabis; labor costs, taxes, royalties paid in cash or in kind, or otherwise; interest or discount paid; or any other expense, however denominated.
(2) "Person" includes any natural person, corporation, partnership, limited liability company, or other business entity as those terms are defined in §11-1-1 et seq. of this code.
(d) Payment of tax and reports. — Every person subject to the tax imposed by this section shall make quarterly payments under this section for each calendar quarter at the rate prescribed in subsection (b) of this section on the gross receipts received or accrued for the calendar quarter, depending upon the person’s method of accounting for federal income tax purposes. The tax shall be due and payable on the 20th day of January, April, July, and October for the preceding calendar quarter. When the payment of tax is due, the person shall file a tax return in a form prescribed by the Tax Commissioner. The Tax Commissioner may require such forms, schedules, and returns and impose such filing and remittance requirements as may be necessary or convenient for the efficient administration of taxes imposed by this section.
(e) Electronic filing and payment. ─ The taxes imposed by this section shall be paid to the Tax Commissioner by electronic funds transfer, unless electronic payment is prohibited by state or federal law. Tax returns required by this section shall be filed electronically with the Tax Commissioner.
(f) Liability for reporting and payment of tax. — If any dispensary does not renew its permit, gives up its permit, loses its permit to operate a dispensary, or otherwise ceases business then any tax, additions to tax, penalties, and interest imposed by this article and by §11-10-1 et seq. of this code shall become due and payable immediately and the dispensary shall make a final return or returns and pay any tax which is due within 30 days after not renewing its permit, giving up its permit, losing its permit to operate a dispensary, or otherwise ceasing business. The unpaid amount of any tax is a lien upon the property of the dispensary and of its owners.
(g) Deposits of proceeds. — All money received from the tax imposed under this section, including any interest and additions to tax paid under §11-10-1 et seq., less the amount of any refunds, shall be deposited into the Medical Cannabis Program Fund.
(h) Exemption. — Sales of medical cannabis shall not be subject to the taxes imposed by §11-15-1 et seq. and §11-15A-1 et seq. of this code if gross receipts from the sale thereof are included in the measure of tax under this section and the tax has been paid as provided in this section. Additionally, sales of medical cannabis shall not be subject to a special district excise tax imposed by a county or municipality pursuant to this code, or to a county or municipal sales tax.
(i) Information. —
(1) Persons subject to the tax imposed by this section shall provide to the Tax Commissioner any information the Tax Commissioner may require to administer, collect, and enforce the tax imposed by this section.
(2) Notwithstanding any provision of §11-10-1 et seq. of this code or of this article to the contrary, the Tax Commissioner, the bureau, and the Secretary of Health and Human Resources may enter into written agreements pursuant to which the Tax Commissioner will disclose to designated employees of the bureau and the Secretary of Health and Human Resources, whether a particular grower, processor, or dispensary is in good standing with the Tax Commissioner, and the bureau and the secretary will disclose to designated employees of the Tax Commissioner information a grower, processor, or dispensary provides to the bureau and the secretary pursuant to this code. Tax information disclosed pursuant to a written agreement shall remain confidential in the hands of the receiver and shall not be disclosable under §29B-1-1 et seq. of this code. To the extent feasible, this information should be shared or exchanged electronically.
(j) Rules. — The Tax Commissioner may promulgate, in accordance with the provisions of §29A-3-1 et seq. of this code, such procedural, interpretive, or legislative rules, including emergency rules, as the Tax Commissioner may deem necessary or convenient for the efficient administration of taxes imposed by this §16A-9-1 of this code.
Medical marijuana organizations are taxed at 10% of the gross receipts of each reporting quarter. This tax, known as the privilege tax, can’t be attributed to the patient – the business must pay it.
The tax is due and electronically payable on the 20th day of January, April, July, and October for the preceding calendar quarter. When the tax payment is due, the person shall file a tax return in a form prescribed by the Tax Commissioner.
Additional tax information:
The quarterly tax funds go into the Medical Cannabis Program Fund
Patients don’t pay tax on medical cannabis, and there aren’t any excise or municipal sales taxes
The Tax Commissioner can adjust emergency taxation rules if they see fit
West Virginia cannabis laws FAQs
Is marijuana legal in West Virginia?
Medical cannabis was legalized in West Virginia in 2017. However, West Virginia is one of 19 states where cannabis has not been decriminalized.
What are the qualifying conditions for medical marijuana in West Virginia?
To obtain a medical certification from a qualifying doctor in West Virginia, a patient may have a terminal illness or suffer from the following:
Damage or severe injury to the spinal cord
Sickle cell anemia
Severe, chronic, or intractable pain
How much weed can I buy in West Virginia?
Patients can purchase up to a 30-day supply of the amount of marijuana their doctor prescribes. This amount includes the following types of products: infused pills, oils, topicals, liquids, dermal patches, or dry leaf flower. The limit varies based on the patient and their condition.
Is recreational cannabis legal in West Virginia?
Recreational marijuana (also called adult-use) is not currently legal in West Virginia. Only medical cannabis is allowed by law.
Can I grow cannabis plants in West Virginia?
Currently, growing and possessing cannabis plants remains illegal in the state of West Virginia. Legislation is pending to allow certain patients to grow medical cannabis, thanks to the recent legal addition of dry leaf and plant products added in 2020. House Bill 2550 would allow patients and caregivers to grow up to ten cannabis plants (up to five mature) for medicinal use.
Can I sell cannabis in West Virginia?
Yes. With a proper medical organization permit from the state, you can sell cannabis to patients and caregivers in West Virginia.
To apply, you’ll need to:
Supply verification and job descriptions of all principal operators of the business to the bureau
Release a criminal background check and fingerprints of everyone at the organization to the West Virginia State Police
Submit a description of the organization’s intended business activities
Get your intended dispensary location approved
Exhibit a plan for security and control of the product on that property
Include the name, residential address, and title of each applicant and their intention to remain lawful
Show no significant criminal charges related to medical cannabis
Exhibit lawful, moral character
Submit the appropriate fees
Look here for a detailed checklist of everything the state requires.
How is cannabis taxed in West Virginia?
In West Virginia, cannabis taxes are the responsibility of the business owner. They are required to pay 10% of the gross receipts of each reporting quarter. Gross receipts refer to receipts from the sale, distribution, or transfer of medical cannabis--without deductions from labor, discounts, or taxes.
Is Flowhub compliant in West Virginia?
Yes! Flowhub was the original integrator with Metrc (West Virginia's regulatory traceability system) so we have a deep understanding of how to keep West Virginia dispensaries compliant. We also are compliant with the state’s unique cannabis regulations.
Disclaimer: The material contained on this website and any attached or referenced pages has been compiled by Flowhub for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be and is not considered to be legal advice. This post is current as of 9/28/22. Cannabis regulations are rapidly changing, and legal advice of any nature should be sought from legal counsel.