The legislation on cannabis in brief
The information contained on this site does not replace the text of the law, which has an official status. In addition, it is not exhaustive.
Clarification regarding medical cannabis
With the exception of Chapter IV of the Cannabis Regulation Act, concerning the restrictive use of cannabis, only the federal regulations apply to medical cannabis.
Notice concerning the Act
The Act to tighten the regulation of cannabis passed on November 1st, 2019. That Act amends the Cannabis Regulation Act. The proposed amendments and additions concern mainly:
The use of cannabis in public places
It is now forbidden to smoke or vape cannabis in any public place, whether indoor or outdoor.
Raising the legal age
The minimum legal age to possess or purchase cannabis and to be admitted to the premises of the Société québécoise du cannabis (SQDC) is now raised to 21 years of age.
Québec’s cannabis regulations are mainly defined in the following statutes:
- the Cannabis Regulation Act,
- the Act respecting the Société des alcools du Québec and
- the amendments to the Highway Safety Code in relation to the legalization of cannabis.
This overview of the main measures includes:
- the possession of cannabis;
- the cultivation of cannabis;
- the use of cannabis;
- the sale of cannabis;
- highway safety.
Possession of cannabis
Total prohibition for persons under 21 years of age
It is totally prohibited for persons under 21 years of age to possess cannabis.
30 grams in a public place
It is possible to possess 30 grams of dried cannabis or its equivalent in a public place.
150 grams in a private residence
In the case of a private residence, the possession limit of 150 grams of dried cannabis or its equivalent applies regardless of the number of persons 21 years of age or over who live there. For example, if three persons 21 years of age or over live in the same residence, the limit is still 150 grams. Moreover, a person 21 years of age or over may not possess more than a total of 150 grams of dried cannabis or its equivalent in several places other than public places, in particular, in all of his or her residences.
Possession prohibited in certain places
It is prohibited to possess cannabis in certain places, in particular certain places accessible to persons under 21 years of age, such as:
- on the grounds, premises or in buildings providing preschool education services, elementary and secondary school instructional services, educational services in vocational training or educational services to adults in general education, of a college-level educational institution;
- on the premises or in the buildings of a university-level educational institution, except student residences;
- on the grounds and in the facilities of a childcare centre or day care centre;
- on grounds, on premises or in buildings used for detention.
For more information, see the other terms and conditions of possession on the Cannabis Regulation Act page.
Prohibition of cannabis cultivation
It is prohibited to cultivate cannabis for personal use. Of note is that it is also prohibited to possess a cannabis plant for personal use.
Prohibition against smoking or vaping cannabis in all indoor or outdoor spaces that are open to the public, including public roads.
Sale of cannabis
Only the Société québécoise du cannabis (SQDC) is authorized for the retail sale of cannabis in Québec.
Prohibition against selling cannabis to persons under 21 years of age
A person under 21 years of age may not be admitted to a cannabis retail outlet. That provision does not apply to employees of the Société québécoise du cannabis who are 18, 19 or 20 years of age as at November 1st, 2019.
In addition, it is prohibited:
- to sell cannabis to a person under 21 years of age;
- to sell cannabis to a person 21 years of age and older who buy for a person under 21 years of age;
- to a person under 21 years of age to buy cannabis;
- to a person 21 years of age and older to buy cannabis for a person under 21 years of age.
Purchase of 30 grams maximum per visit to the SQDC
It is prohibited to sell more than the equivalent of 30 grams of dried cannabis to a buyer in the course of one visit.
Types of cannabis for sale
Only the following types of cannabis may be sold according to the regulations in force:
- dried cannabis;
- cannabis oil;
- fresh cannabis;
- cannabis resin (hashish);
- edible cannabis products;
- cannabis extracts.
Other terms and conditions of sale
Other terms and conditions regulate the sale of cannabis. For more information, see the Cannabis Regulation Act page.
It is prohibited for any person to drive a road vehicle or to have care or control of a road vehicle if there is a detectable presence of cannabis or other drug in the person’s saliva.
For more information, see the amendments to the Highway Safety Code related to the legislation on cannabis.
The Cannabis Regulation Act stipulates that an employer may, pursuant to the employer’s managerial prerogative, regulate the use of cannabis, and even prohibit it entirely. Amendments have been made to clarify the Act respecting occupational health and safety.
Other terms and conditions
Other terms and conditions regulate cannabis in Québec. For more information, see the pages on the Cannabis Regulation Act, the Act respecting the Société des alcools du Québec and the Amendments made to the Highway Safety Code in relation to the legislation.
Last update: March 11, 2020 1:09 PM