Yes, weed is legal in Lithuania but the program is restricted to medical use only. Recreational use of cannabis remains illegal in Lithuania. The cannabis scene in Lithuania is quite complicated. The unicameral parliament voted to legalize cannabis for medical use in 2018. Given the previously anti-cannabis attitude adopted by the country, this was a complete volte-face. In 2021, the same parliament voted against fully decriminalizing cannabis.
Lithuania is known for its beautiful natural landscape that boasts of shady dense forests, expansive lakes, and sandy beaches by the seaside. It is also known for the high quality of life enjoyed by its citizens; it's the highest in central and eastern Europe. Lithuanians have access to transcendent healthcare infrastructure with a high level of safety. With a population that’s yet to hit the 3 million mark, this Baltic state is on the radar as an economic powerhouse.
Is Cannabis Decriminalized in Lithuania?
Yes, cannabis was decriminalized in Lithuania in July 2022. The Seimas (Lithuanian parliament) voted overwhelmingly in favor of a bill to decriminalize cannabis. While 70 members of parliament voted in favor of the bill, only 46 voted against it and another 10 did not vote.
Possession of small amounts of cannabis (oil, resin, or extracts) that can be assumed to be for personal use, is decriminalized. Such offenses are punished by a fine of anywhere between 50 and 300 euros. Possession of large amounts of cannabis with intent to sell or distribute is considered a criminal offense which is punishable by jail time. Those who hold large amounts of cannabis can be exempted from punishment if they hand over the weed voluntarily to the police or public authority.
Even though cannabis has been decriminalized in Lithuania, the offense is still listed under the criminal code.
Is Hemp Legal in Lithuania?
Yes, industrial hemp was legalized in Lithuania in 2013. Lithuania was the last country in Europe to legalize hemp. Local farmers can now cultivate hemp. Like other EU countries, legal hemp in Lithuania must not exceed a THC content of 0.2%.
Is CBD Legal in Lithuania?
Yes, CBD is legal in Lithuania if it is derived from hemp. However, the Drug, Tobacco and Alcohol Control Department (DBACD) has set the legal THC limit at 0%. Due to the zero tolerance to THC, it is difficult to come by any legal CBD product in Lithuania. Even cannabis seeds are hard to come by in local shops in Lithuania.
Is Medical Cannabis Legal in Lithuania?
Yes, medical cannabis was legalized in Lithuania in 2018 through an act of parliament. This law took effect in 2019, allowing doctors to prescribe medical cannabis to patients with serious conditions such as cancer, HIV/AIDS, and multiple sclerosis among others. Unlike the US, doctors can only prescribe medical cannabis for conditions which have research proving their safety and efficacy. While this is standard for other medicines, the long and dark era of cannabis prohibition prevents this from being a reality in cannabis. Cannabis research has faced a lot of setbacks unjustifiably, and the current scheduling of cannabis doesn’t make things any better. Medical doctors in Lithuania wishing to prescribe medical cannabis battle many odds which have ultimate repercussions on patients needing medical cannabis in the country. To date no patient has been able to access this form of treatment legally.
Can You Grow Weed Legally in Lithuania?
No, it is illegal to cultivate weed in Lithuania. A few licensed farmers can however grow and process industrial hemp legally. However, there seems to be a lot of weed that is cultivated illegally. In 2021, Lithuania police confiscated a shipment from the US of over 200 kgs of cannabis seeds that was enroute to Lithuania. The value of this cargo was placed at close to 2 billion euros.
What is the Punishment for Cannabis Crimes in Lithuania?
The punishment for cannabis crimes in Lithuania varies depending on the amount possessed and the intent, whether personal or commercial use. Possession of small amounts of cannabis was decriminalized in Lithuania in 2018. The penalty for this nature of offense is either a warning or a small fine of between 50 to 300 euros. This included the production, possession, transportation, or acquisition in any way of small amounts of cannabis (in any form) without the intention to distribute. Repeated offenders will be liable to fines up to 1000 euros. The quantity implied by “small amount” is set to be determined by the Ministry of Health. In all cases the seized cannabis will be confiscated.
possession of large amounts of cannabis, which signifies intent to distribute or sell, is considered a criminal offence. this is punishable by imprisonment of between 3 to 10 years.
Conclusion: Cannabis Laws in Lithuania
Cannabis laws in Lithuania are stringent but have been changing gradually since 2013 when hemp was legalized. Even though Lithuania legalized cannabis for medical use in 2018, no patients have benefited so far. Cannabis has been decriminalized and possession of small amounts will attract a warning letter or a fine not exceeding 300 euros, for first time offenders. The current president of Lithuania is against the decriminalization or legalization of cannabis.