Medical Marijuana in South Dakota

Medical marijuana was legalized in South Dakota following voter approval of Initiated Measure 26 – the Medical Marijuana Initiative – on Election Day 2020.

The measure permits adults and minors with one or more qualifying conditions, or their caregivers, to apply for a registration card that can be used to purchase medical marijuana at state-licensed dispensaries. Such dispensaries are not yet operational in South Dakota, though provisions of the Medical Marijuana Initiative mean the state medical cannabis industry regulator – the Department of Health – has six months starting July 1, 2021, to accept applications from patients for medical marijuana cards and issue licenses for commercial cannabis cultivators and retailers. This means it’s unlikely medical marijuana will be available to purchase in South Dakota until 2022.

Medical marijuana patients are allowed to possess up to three ounces of cannabis, including non-flower products, and can cultivate up to three plants at home for personal use. Upon a physician’s recommendation, patients may be permitted to grow more than three plants. Patient’s may only smoke marijuana on private property and out of public view.

Qualifying Conditions

The final list of qualifying conditions haven’t been released yet though under the text of Initiated Measure 26, medical marijuana can be recommended for any of the following conditions:

  • cachexia, or wasting syndrome
  • severe, debilitating pain
  • severe nausea
  • seizures
  • severe and persistent muscle spasms
  • multiple sclerosis

The state Department of Health may add more qualifying medical conditions for medical marijuana treatment in due course. What’s more, any South Dakota resident can petition the Department of Health to add a particular medical condition that qualifies for medical marijuana treatment.

How to Apply for Medical Marijuana in South Dakota

The full regulations governing South Dakota’s medical marijuana program are yet to be unveiled though it’s expected that to qualify for an MMJ card you must be a state resident and have been diagnosed by a physician with one of the qualifying conditions. Further announcements concerning South Dakota’s medical marijuana program are expected from mid-2021, such as MMJ application fees and renewal requirements.

Renewal Requirements

Yet to be determined.