Short Answer: Yes, CDB oil is legal in Ohio.
Long Answer: For CBD oil to be legal in Ohio, It must come from a legal source of CBD.
The federal government exempted industrial hemp from its definition of marijuana in the 2018 Farm Bill.
Therefore, CBD oil made by a hemp manufacturer licensed in a state with an approved regulatory program is legal.
However, the federal government has not yet approved the use of CBD in any dietary supplement or food. The Ohio legislature created its legal hemp program in 2019.
As part of the program, Ohio legalized CBD and cosmetics, personal care products, dietary supplements, and food made from hemp.
Under either rule, “hemp” means the plant Cannabis sativa L (cannabis) that tests below a 0.3% total delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentration.
THC is the psychoactive compound found in the cannabis plant. If the plant tests higher than 0.3% THC, it is marijuana. Marijuana remains a Schedule I drug under federal and state law.
The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation’s crime labs can test and distinguish between hemp and marijuana. Private labs can also distinguish between legal and illegal plants and products.
If you’ve been arrested with CBD oil in Ohio, don’t hesitate to contact us at Gounaris Abboud, LPA. Our experienced criminal defense attorneys understand the legal distinctions and can help you fight any criminal charges you may face.
What Is CBD Oil?
“Cannabidiol,” known as CBD, is one of many chemical compounds (called phytocannabinoids) found in the cannabis plant. Both THC and CBD naturally occur in the cannabis plant.
Licensed hemp farmers use varieties of the cannabis plant that will develop up to 40% CBD and less than 0.03% THC. Unlike THC, CBD is non-intoxicating.
To make CBD oil, the manufacturer extracts the CBD from the cannabis flower using a mechanical or solvent-based extraction process, similar to making essential oils.
Then the manufacturer adds the CBD extract to a carrier oil, such as grapeseed or hempseed oil. Before a store can sell CBD oil, the manufacturer must test it for both CBD and THC concentrations.
Additionally, if sold in Ohio, it must meet Ohio’s food safety standards.
Is CBD Oil Legal Under Federal Law?
Since 1970, the federal government has outlawed possession of marijuana. The federal Controlled Substances Act (CSA) defines marijuana as all parts of the cannabis plant, whether growing or not.
The Act placed it in the most restrictive class, Schedule I. According to the CSA, Schedule I drugs have a “high potential for abuse” and “no currently accepted medical use.”
Starting in 2014, Congress decided to exclude “hemp” from the definition of marijuana. With the 2018 Farm Bill, it created a national industrial hemp program.
Under the Bill, State Departments of Agriculture could create their own hemp regulations to submit for federal approval or follow a USDA-created plan.
Hemp grown under an approved program by a licensed farmer became legal. However, cannabis plants that contain more than a trace amount (0.03%) of THC and products made from them remain Schedule I drugs.
In addition, the Bill gave the FDA authority over hemp and CBD products. The FDA regulates the safety of food and drugs sold in the U.S. To date, the FDA has approved only one CBD product, a prescription drug Epidiolex used for rare, severe disorders.
CBD Oil Is Not Illegal in Ohio: Senate Bill 57
In 2018, the Ohio governor approved a bill (SB 57) to decriminalize hemp and license hemp cultivation. SB 57 made it legal to possess and use hemp products containing less than 0.3% THC in Ohio.
This includes CBD oil. In addition, SB 57 legalized sales of CBD oil in stores outside of medical marijuana dispensaries. Finally, the law requires labels on hemp products that say they contain less than 0.03% THC.
Initially, the Ohio attorney general stopped prosecuting marijuana cases. The state’s crime labs could not tell the difference between the newly legal hemp and illegal marijuana.
SB 57 allocated $968,000 to the attorney general’s office to develop testing. Within a year, the Bureau of Criminal Investigation finished creating its testing protocol, and prosecutions resumed.
Despite the lab’s capabilities, they commonly experience testing delays, putting off prosecution for months or even years.
Were You Arrested With CBD Oil in Ohio?
Police officers cannot tell the difference between hemp and marijuana by sight alone. They are legally allowed to search for marijuana if they smell or observe what they think is marijuana.
They can arrest you if they have probable cause to believe that you possess illegal marijuana.
Unless your CBD oil is correctly labeled under Ohio’s hemp laws or you have proof of being a medical marijuana patient, the only way to prove your compliance with the law is through laboratory testing.
If you’ve been arrested for possessing CBD oil in Ohio, we can help. When you contact our firm, an experienced drug crime defense attorney will help you navigate through the legal system.
Our firm has achieved dismissals and penalty reductions for hundreds of people. Together, our award-winning attorneys have over 50 years of experience to use in your defense.
Our clients have called us trustworthy, empathetic, honest, and supportive, and we’ll be there for you throughout the legal process. Contact us today for a free case analysis at 937-222-1515.