Is Delta 9 Legal in Alabama?
Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol, commonly known as Delta 9 THC, is the main psychoactive compound found in the cannabis plant (Cannabis sativa) including the seeds, resin, and derivatives.
While marijuana remains illegal in Alabama, the 2018 Farm Bill federally legalized hemp and hemp-derived products, causing confusion around the legal status of Delta 9 products in the state. So is Delta 9 THC truly legal in Alabama? Let's take a closer look.
Federal Law and the 2018 Farm Bill
In 2018, the U.S. passed the Farm Bill which removed hemp and its derivatives from Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act. Hemp is defined as any part of the cannabis plant, including extracts, cannabinoids, isomers, acids, salts, and salts of isomers with a Delta-9 THC concentration of 0.3% or less.
This made hemp and hemp-derived products federally legal across the U.S., including Delta 9 THC as long as it comes from hemp with under 0.3% Delta-9 THC levels. However, the bill also allowed states to implement their own laws regarding hemp and hemp-derived compounds.
Alabama State Law
In 2019, Alabama revised the Code of Alabama 1975 to align with federal law on hemp. The state legalized possession and sale of hemp products that meet the federal THC limit.
Specifically, Section 2-8-381 states that ingestible hemp products containing CBD or other hemp-derived cannabinoids, isomers, acids, salts, and salts of isomers are legal if they contain less than 0.3% Delta-9 THC.
This seems to imply that Delta 9 THC derived from hemp is legal to buy and possess in Alabama, as it meets the federal definition for legal hemp derivatives. However, Alabama state law does not directly mention or carve out Delta 9 THC itself.
Hemp, Marijuana, and the Delta-9 Dilemma in Alabama
Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is one of the primary active compounds found in the cannabis plant, including the seeds and resin. In Alabama, marijuana and marijuana-derived THC remain illegal. However, hemp and hemp derivatives were legalized by the 2018 Farm Bill, causing confusion around the legality of hemp-derived Delta-9 products.
Alabama Code Section 20-2-2 (14) defines marijuana as including all parts of the cannabis plant and any compounds, derivatives, mixtures, or preparations from the plant material. This includes Delta-9 THC derived from marijuana.
However, the state also legalized hemp and hemp derivatives, extracts, cannabinoids, and isomers in alignment with federal law. So hemp-derived Delta-9 THC could potentially fall into a legal gray area if it meets the federal limit of 0.3% THC concentration. The key difference is whether the Delta-9 THC comes from marijuana or legal hemp.
For now, Delta-9 THC itself remains neither clearly legal nor illegal in Alabama, depending on its origin and context. More regulatory clarification is needed around hemp versus marijuana derivatives to provide guidance to consumers and businesses. Until then, those who possess any form of Delta-9 THC are assuming some degree of legal risk.
Is Delta 9 THC Legal to Buy and Ship?
While federal law permits Delta 9 hemp derivatives, Alabama's lack of specifics has caused confusion around actual Delta 9 products. Most CBD retailers in Alabama do not stock Delta 9 items currently.
However, many online Delta 9 brands do ship to Alabama addresses. They argue their products are federally compliant at under 0.3% Delta-9 THC by dry weight. But there is debate on whether these products are actually legal under Alabama's current hemp laws.
Until further clarification by lawmakers, Alabama residents who want to try Delta 9 THC products may need to have them shipped from out-of-state. There are also no state licensing requirements for production of hemp-derived products.
Of course, marijuana-derived Delta 9 remains fully illegal in Alabama, as the state has not legalized cannabis in any form. Only hemp-derived Delta 9 THC potentially falls into a legal gray area based on interpretations of federal versus state laws.
Is Delta 9 THC Legal in Other States?
In contrast to Alabama, some states like Colorado have proactively legalized hemp-derived Delta 9 products containing less than 0.3% THC. A few other states also allow Delta 9 but set lower THC limits for legal hemp derivatives.
However, many states are also still working out regulations and enforcement protocols around Delta 8, Delta 9, and other new hemp-derived cannabis products. It's a rapidly evolving landscape across America.
For those considering trying Delta 9 THC in any state, it's important to first check your specific state and local laws, as regulations can vary widely. Some states prohibit Delta 9 entirely outside of FDA-approved medications.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between Delta 9 THC and Delta 8 THC?
Delta 9 THC is the main psychotropic compound in cannabis that gives users a "high" feeling. Delta 8 THC is another cannabinoid that has similar but milder psychoactive effects. Both are chemically similar but have different chemical structures.
Is Delta 9 THC legal in Alabama?
It's unclear. Alabama legalized hemp derivatives under federal guidelines, which include Delta 9 THC from hemp. But the state hasn't directly addressed Delta 9 itself. Online vendors ship to AL but local shops don't sell actual Delta 9 products currently.
Can you fail a drug test using Delta 9 THC?
Yes, Delta 9 THC can cause you to fail a standard workplace drug screening that tests for THC metabolites, even if derived from legal hemp. You may be able to pass with pure Delta 8 THC, but Delta 9 carries risks.
What is the legal THC limit for hemp products?
Under the 2018 Farm Bill, legal hemp cannot exceed 0.3% Delta-9 THC concentration on a dry weight basis. All legal hemp derivatives must meet this same THC limit. Any products with over 0.3% THC are still considered federally illegal marijuana.
Can you get arrested for possession of Delta 9 THC?
You are unlikely to be arrested for hemp-derived Delta 9 THC that meets the 0.3% legal limit. However, marijuana-derived Delta 9 would lead to criminal charges in states without recreational cannabis laws, including Alabama.
In summary, Delta 9 THC remains in legal limbo in Alabama until state officials provide more guidance. Consumers should understand the risks involved with Delta 9 and other cannabis derivatives that inhabit a gray area between state and federal laws. Consult a lawyer if you have any concerns before purchasing or using Delta 9 products.