This past November, Amendment 2 legalizing the use of medical marijuana was approved by Florida voters. The rules governing medical marijuana have not yet been passed by the State Legislature and the Department of Health; however, it is likely to assume that situations regarding the use of this substance within our community associations will soon come up.
Condominiums and homeowner’s associations are likely to have some of the following questions:
- Can a resident ask for an accommodation to use medical marijuana? Must the association provide the accommodation?
- Are owners who rent out their properties obligated to question a renter’s possible marijuana use? What would be the appropriate protocol to deny or approve applications if use is confirmed?
- Can associations ask current occupants in the property about whether or not marijuana is being used or will be used in the future?
- Does the prescription of medical marijuana carry the same considerations as someone who has a disability as defined by law?
Currently in Florida, the only medical marijuana available is in ingestible form. However, this may change and smoking medical marijuana could be a concern for communities, especially in regards to the use of smoking in common areas.
If an association desired to pass a rule regulating the use of marijuana in the community, whether in common areas or the units themselves, there would need to be clearly expressed reasons behind it. A reason for this might be the health impact the smoke might have on others around it as well the minors who witness it being used.
As the State Legislature and the Department of Health have yet to pass any accompanying rules to the use of medical marijuana, it is advisable to speak with your association’s attorney before deciding on whether it should be regulated and to what extent in order to be prepared for any situations regarding medical marijuana use in your community.
by Ashley Dietz Gray, Marketing Director, Campbell Property Management