The legal status of CBD, or Cannabidiol, varies from state to state, and there are still some states where CBD is completely illegal.

Due to its ability to naturally treat many chronic conditions, the demand for CBD is skyrocketing. As the popularity of the hemp-derived compound has begun to shift, so has the acceptance in many states across America.

While we are definitely moving in the right direction, the legal status of CBD as a whole is still very unclear due to different laws in different states, and even different laws at state and federal levels. Because of this, many people are deterred from using CBD; and instead of gaining the benefits of it, they’re stuck wondering: “Is CBD legal?”


The Legal Status of CBD in 2018

1. Hemp-Derived CBD vs. Marijuana-Derived CBD

A key point of whether CBD is legal in a state or not is whether or not it's derived from Hemp or Marijuana. Here's why:

There are some key differences between the two different strains of cannabis, Hemp and Marijuana, that affect the CBD that comes from them, and CBDOrigin explains these differences,

"Now, marijuana and hemp are both members of the cannabis family, so they do share a lot of characteristics. There is, however, a crucial difference between the two–the amount of psychoactive Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) each plant produces. While marijuana can contain up to 30% THC, hemp contains no more than 0.3% THC. In other words, marijuana can get you really high, while hemp has such a low amount of THC, that it would be impossible to get high off it.

"Because hemp has no psychoactive effects, the law has no problem with it. Hemp products are completely legal and available in all types of different industries and stores across America. Marijuana, on the other hand, is much a different story. And this is why the source of a CBD product is crucial to its legality."

2. The Legal Status of CBD in Each State as of 2018

  • States Where CBD is Legal for Recreational Use

    There are 8 States where the Cannabis plant, including both marijuana and hemp, are completely legal for recreational and medicinal use. These states are Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington. So if you find yourself in one of these states, you are free to legally use CBD in any form without a prescription.

  • States Where CBD is Legal for Medicinal Use

    There are a total of 46 states (including the 8 states mentioned above) where CBD is legal with a prescription for medicinal use. And although CBD usage is legal in these states, the laws vary from state to state, with 17 of these states having specific legislation for the THC-levels found in CBD and the conditions being treated with CBD.

    These 17 states are Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

    The other 29 states that have fully legalized the medicinal use of not only hemp-derived CBD but also marijuana-derived CBD are: Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington and West Virginia. The territories of Guam and Puerto Rico also allow the use of CBD products on medical grounds.

  • States Where CBD is Illegal

    There are 6 states where CBD is completely illegal because all forms of cannabis are illegal in these states: Idaho, South Dakota, West Virginia, Nebraska, Kansas, and Indiana. For those of you who unfortunately live in these states, using CBD will be at your own risk.


While the legal status of CBD has been growing and becoming legally accepted, we still have a little ways to go. CBD has so many amazing, natural benefits for so many illnesses and ailments, that the faster it can become legalized, the better it will be for the natural health of our country.

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