Marijuana Charges in North Carolina: Possession and Distribution

In North Carolina, the state takes a hard stance against drug possession, distribution, and other related activities. Even small amounts of marijuana can lead to serious consequences that may affect the rest of your life. Whether or not you agree with marijuana laws—if they charge you with possession or distribution of marijuana, you need an experienced drug attorney who knows how to minimize the damage.

Misdemeanor and Felony Marijuana Possession Charges

Marijuana possession charges in North Carolina are relevant to the quantity of drugs, criminal history, and other mitigating factors. North Carolina marijuana laws dictate the following maximum penalties for possession: Misdemeanors

  • Possession of less than ½ ounce of Marijuana or 1/20 ounce Hashish: 30 days in prison and/or $100 fine
  • Possession of more than ½ ounce of Marijuana or 1/20 ounce Hashish: 2 years in prison and/or fine


  • Possession of over 1½ ounce of Marijuana or 3/20 ounce of Hashish or comprises any quantity of synthetic Tetrahydrocannabinols or Tetrahydrocannabinols isolated from the resin of marijuana: 5 years in prison and/or fine

North Carolina drug laws consider simple possession of marijuana to be a less serious crime than distribution. Distribution refers to selling, providing, delivering, or otherwise supplying drugs. (Not to be confused with trafficking—stay tuned.)

North Carolina Marijuana Distribution Laws:

  • Class 1 felony for distribution, but not when under 5 grams for no consideration
  • Class H felony sale or distribution of 10 to 50 pounds — fines up to $5,000 and 25 to 30 months in prison
  • Class G felony sale or distribution of 50 to 2,000 pounds — fines up to $25,000 and 35 to 42 months in prison
  • Class F felony which is sale or distribution of 2,000 pounds up to 10,000 — 70 to 84 months in prison, $50,000 fine
  • Class D felony for sale or distribution of over 10,000 pounds — fines up to $200,000 and 175 to 219 months in prison

There is a distinction between marijuana distribution charges and drug trafficking charges in North Carolina, based on the quantity of drugs being distributed. Trafficking typically involves high volume drug distribution and large-scale cultivation—and often falls under federal jurisdiction

Don't Let Drug Charges in North Carolina Ruin Your Life

The penalties for drug possession in North Carolina can range from a small fine and community service to prison time and a criminal record. Without an experienced drug charge lawyer, you may set yourself up for a bigger fall than you imagined. If you or someone you know has been charged with drug possession, let the Law Offices of Jason H. Reece take control of your case. Contact us today, and we'll get to work.