Florida: Lawsuit Challenges Regulators’ Failure To Fully Implement Medical Marijuana Law

Tallahassee, FL: Florida patients and growers have filed a lawsuit over regulators’ failure to meet deadlines associated with the state’s 2016 voter-approved medical cannabis law.

Plaintiffs argue that the state Department of Health has failed to issue licenses for additional dispensaries despite an October deadline. “Florida law required the DOH to issue ten additional licenses by October 3, 2017,” the suit claims. “[Y]et the Department has failed to do so – an issue which patients say limits their access to lifesaving medicine.”

Regulators also have a backlog of patient applications from those seeking to participate in the state’s nascent medical cannabis access program.

Seventy-one percent of Florida voters approved Amendment 2 – a voter-initiated constitutional amendment permitting the regulated distribution of cannabis to qualified patients.

In July, plaintiffs Florida for Care filed suit challenging a legislative change to the amendment that prohibits the possession of cannabis “in a form for smoking.” That legal challenge remains ongoing.

For more information, contact Justin Strekal, NORML Political Director, at (202) 483-5500.