Even though recreational marijuana is legal in Virginia, renters may still be at risk. Nearly one month after the new policy took effect, landlords say it’s business as usual. However, Central Virginia Legal Aid Society Litigation Director Martin Wegbreit suspects there will be issues at some point. “I think it is virtually inevitable,” Wegbreit said. The law generally allows adults 21 and older to have up to an ounce of marijuana in public but it continues to ban public use. Virginians can legally use marijuana and grow a limited number of plants in private. However, landlords can continue to enforce their own rules, including no-smoking policies. Rick Jones is the Vice Chairman of Management Services Corporation, which oversees about 4,000 units across the Commonwealth. “We really don’t have a grey area. It’s quite simple,” Jones said. “If your lease says you are not allowed to smoke in your apartment, it doesn’t make any difference what you smoke,” Wegbreit said that doesn’t necessarily mean tenants won’t be able to take advantage of marijuana legalization in other ways. “If the lease specifically bans smoking, then the court would enforce such a lease provision but that doesn’t necessarily allow the landlord to evict for simple possession and as we know marijuana can be ingested in a number of ways, including edibles,” Wegbreit said. Virginia’s new law also allows each adult household to grow up to four marijuana plants–indoors or outdoors–as long as they are properly labeled, out of public view, and out of reach of children.
Mmp News Author, Medical Marijuana Program Connection, 07/27/2021 20:08:00