san francisco marijuana law

Know your rights as a cannabis consumer

Rules about buying and using cannabis in San Francisco.

It is legal in California to buy and use cannabis if you are 21 or older. But, like tobacco and alcohol, there are laws that you need to follow.

Buying, selling and growing cannabis in San Francisco

You can only buy cannabis from licensed retailers.

Adults can buy and carry:

  • Up to 1 ounce (28.5 grams) of cannabis
  • Up to 8 grams of concentrated cannabis

You can only sell cannabis if you have a Retail Cannabis Permit from San Francisco and a license from California.

You can grow up to 6 cannabis plants in your home or in a locked and enclosed yard. It must not be visible to the public, and the property owner must approve.

If you have a Medical Marijuana ID card, you can buy, carry, and grow more.

Securing your cannabis

You must lock up cannabis and cannabis products away from children and pets.

Cannabis for medical use

To buy medical cannabis, you need a Medical Marijuana ID card or a doctor’s recommendation. You do not pay sales tax if you buy cannabis with a Medical Marijuana ID card.

  • Grow up to 12 cannabis plants for your own use
  • Buy up to 8 ounces of flower

You can buy even more than 8 ounces if your doctor recommends it.

Using cannabis in San Francisco

You cannot smoke, eat, vape, or use cannabis:

  • In public places, like parks and sidewalks
  • Near schools or anywhere with children (you can’t even carry cannabis at places like day care centers)
  • Inside most buildings, like workplaces, restaurants and bars, entertainment venues, and the common areas of multi-unit housing
  • At outdoor public events like music festivals, street fairs and parades

Generally, you cannot smoke or vape cannabis in places where you cannot smoke tobacco.

You can use cannabis in private homes if the owner allows it.

You can consume cannabis in a dispensary that has a consumption lounge.


Driving under the influence of cannabis is illegal and you can be arrested, fined, and have your license suspended.

You cannot drive or ride in a vehicle with an open container of cannabis. Cannabis must be sealed or kept in the trunk.

Cannabis at work

Employers can still:

  • Have a drug and alcohol-free workplace
  • Require drug tests for employees
  • Turn you down for a job because you use cannabis
  • Fire you, demote you, or take other action against you for using cannabis

Federal law

Cannabis is still considered an illegal drug by the federal government. You can be arrested or prosecuted for buying or using cannabis on federal land.

Many places in California are policed by federal authorities. They include, but are not limited to:

  • Airports
  • National parks
  • Federal buildings
  • Military installations

Immigration status

If you are not a US citizen, using cannabis or working in the cannabis industry can hurt your immigration status. You should get legal advice before leaving the United States or applying for naturalization.

Rules about buying and using cannabis in San Francisco.

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Cannabis Information

How Does the Adult Use of Marijuana Act Affect the City of South San Francisco?

On November 8, 2016, California voters approved the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Cannabis Act (AUMA). The AUMA legalized the possession, use, and cultivation of non-medical cannabis for those who are 21 years of age or older and established a state system to regulate commercial cannabis activity. On June 27, 2017, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill 94 (the Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MAUCRSA), which repealed the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MCRSA), incorporated certain licensing provisions from MCRSA, and created a single regulatory scheme for both medical and non-medical cannabis.

The City of South San Francisco has reviewed and adopted regulations to permit certain Cannabis Businesses in the area east of the US-101 freeway. For details on the application process, land use regulations and frequently asked questions, click on links below.

  • Application Process
  • FAQ’s
  • Land Use Regulations

Contact Us

Questions? Email us.

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South San Francisco, CA 94080

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South San Francisco, CA 94080
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