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Cannabis and the Law

This guide gives an overview of the rapidly evolving laws concerning marijuana and CBD oil.

 Texas's Compassionate-Use Program

In 2015, Texas passed the Compassionate-Use Act, which allowed the first legal use of low-THC cannabis products in the state for patients with intractable epilepsy. It was expanded in 2019 and 2021 to include other conditions.

Texas Law

The Compassionate-Use Program initially only applied to patients with intractable epilepsy, but the Texas Legislature has since expanded the list of patients eligible for inclusion. At present, this program is open to patients with the following conditions listed in Texas Occupations Code Section 169.003:

  • epilepsy
  • a seizure disorder
  • multiple sclerosis
  • spasticity
  • amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
  • autism
  • cancer
  • post-traumatic stress disorder
  • an incurable neurodegenerative disease

HB 1535 expands the Compassionate-Use Program to patients with all forms of cancer and patients with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and raises the maximum level of THC from 0.5% to 1%. HB 1535 went into effect on September 1st, 2021.

Below you will find references to areas of Texas law that govern the medical use of low-THC cannabis. If you find these statutes difficult to understand, you may want to view the additional resources on this page or speak to an attorney.

Find a Participating Physician

The Texas Department of Public Safety operates CURT, the Compassionate-Use Registry of Texas. This database can help you find nearby physicians who are registered to prescribe low-THC cannabis.

Understanding the Law

Reading the law itself can be complicated. To help you understand the law, below we link to resources that attempt to explain the law in simple terms. 

Medical Marijuana and Gun Rights

Under the restrictions of the federal Gun Control Act, it is illegal for a person "who is an unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance" to possess, receive, or transport firearms or ammunition.  This has raised concerns that participating in a medical marijuana program may cost patients their rights to possess firearms. However, the Texas Department of Public Safety has stated in an FAQ that they do not believe participation in the state's CUP program disqualifies a person from possessing a firearm or obtaining a Texas License to Carry, although it's possible that a patient's underlying condition may disqualify them.

The following links provide more information and context but do not yet address how Second Amendment rights may be affected by the use of CBD or hemp-derived products as that is still a developing area of law.