A Glimpse Into Unlawful Possession of Marijuana in New York
In New York, Unlawful Possession of Marijuana (PL 221.05) is an offense prosecuted by most district attorney’s offices. This charge can result in a jail sentence, monetary fines, community service, and other adverse consequences. More commonly referred to as UPM, this charge can also be upgraded depending on the amount of marijuana found a person to Criminal Possession of Marijuana in the 5th Degree (PL 221.10). Given the right circumstances, a marijuana charge can be upgraded an even more serious felony charge.
UPM is chargeable for any individual possessing less than 25 grams or about 7/8 of an ounce of marijuana. Meanwhile, the more serious charge of Criminal Possession of Marijuana chargeable under Penal law 221.10 is an available charge to law enforcement when an individual is found with over 25 grams of marijuana but less than 2 ounces or when the possession of burning marijuana blunt in public view.
In our experience, a large number of college students have been appeared in court on theses charges not knowing that a conviction to a marijuana charge can result in the denial of certain student loans. Federal legislation has been enacted to block a student’s eligibility for Federal aid.
20 U.S.C. Section 1091 is the controlling statute suspending a student’s eligibility for any federal grant, federal loan, or federal work study financial assistance for students convicted of any offense under State or Federal law involving the possession or the sale of a controlled substance.
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This blog provides general information and thoughts about various legal issues primarily in the New York Tri-State area and occasionally in other areas. You should not construe any content as legal advice or the creation of an attorney-client relationship. Again, we provide the content only for informational purposes. You should not make decisions based information on our web post since the application of the law depends on the facts and each situation may be different. In addition, the law in most jurisdictions is different and changes constantly and we make no representations that any information on our post has been updated. The post should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from an experienced attorney in your state or jurisdiction.