1 December, 2019

Status: Legal


2013 - Medical cannabis legalised
2016 - Possession of recreational cannabis decriminalised to a misdemeanour crime
2018 - Medical cannabis laws liberalised (patients to no longer undergo criminal background checks or be fingerprinted. More conditions were added to the qualifying conditions list in 2019)
2020 - Recreational cannabis legalised

Policy Framework:

  • Medical cannabis patients must have a qualifying condition to obtain medical cannabis legally (prior to recreational cannabis being legalised in 2020);
  • Medical cannabis patients must have a recommendation from a doctor before they can obtain medical cannabis;
  • Under the new legislation, over 700,000 residents of Illinois will be eligible for expungement of cannabis possession criminal records;
  • “Social equity” dispensary license applicants can meet criteria to obtain a special license aimed to benefit historically disenfranchised communities;
  • Individuals must be 21 years or older to purchase, possess, or consume cannabis;
  • Only state-registered medical cannabis patients may grow their own cannabis at home with a limit of five plants per household;
  • No consuming cannabis in a public place;
  • There are currently 55 dispensaries in the state of Illinois;
  • Possession limit of 30g (1oz) of cannabis flower;
  • There are an estimated 39,808 registered medical cannabis patients in Illinois.

    Source: Norml


  • Between 2005 and 2017, cannabis use disorder in people over the age of 12 decreased from 1.7% to 1.5%;
  • In 2018, sales of medical marijuana reached $US91.1 million.



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