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Is Delta 9 Legal in South Carolina

Learn in-depth if Delta 9 is legal in South Carolina, state's delta 9 THC laws, shipping guidelines, consumer tips, and more.

In recent years, federal legislation has sparked enthusiasm among cannabis enthusiasts by legalizing hemp and its derivatives, including delta 9. This has opened the door to legally accessible cannabis compounds, much to the delight of many.

is delta 9 legal in south carolina

Yet, despite this federal move towards legalization, state responses have varied. Some states have embraced these changes and integrated hemp into their markets, while others have imposed strict restrictions or outright bans on hemp products.

This leads to the question: What is the stance of South Carolina on this matter? Is delta 9 legal in the Palmetto State?

Is Delta 9 Legal in South Carolina?

In 2018, the U.S. federal government passed the Farm Bill, also known as the Agriculture Improvement Act, which legalized hemp and its derivatives nationwide.

This landmark legislation differentiates between hemp, defined as cannabis plants containing 0.3% or less THC by dry weight, and marijuana, which refers to cannabis plants exceeding that THC threshold.

While the Farm Bill did legalize hemp, it maintained the status of marijuana as an illegal Schedule I substance. However, the Biden administration has stated potential changes ahead.

Recently, the administration expressed intentions to pardon all federal simple marijuana possession offenses and encouraged states to follow suit. There's also talk of reassessing marijuana's classification under the Controlled Substances Act.

Currently, hemp-derived cannabinoids are the only federally legal form of cannabis. Yet, despite hemp’s federal legality, not all states have aligned with this stance. This brings us to South Carolina—what is the legal status of delta 9 in the state?

South Carolina aligns with the federal position, allowing the sale, purchase, and use of hemp-derived cannabinoids, provided they contain no more than 0.3% THC.

In 2019, South Carolina enacted House Bill 3449, which legalized all derivatives of hemp including cannabinoids, terpenes, and other compounds, and also removed these substances from the state’s controlled substances list.

According to HB 3449:

(6)    'Federally Defined THC Level For Hemp' Means A Delta-9 THC Concentration Of Not More Than 0.3 Percent On A Dry Weight Basis, Or The THC Concentration For Hemp Defined In 7 U.S.C. SECTION 5940, Whichever Is Greater.

(8)    'Hemp' Or 'Industrial Hemp' Means The Plant Cannabis Sativa L. And Any Part Of That Plant, Including The Nonsterilized Seeds Thereof And All Derivatives, Extracts, Cannabinoids, Isomers, Acids, Salts, And Salts Of Isomers, Whether Growing Or Not, With The Federally Defined THC Level For Hemp. Hemp Shall Be Considered An Agricultural Commodity.

(9)    'Hemp Products' Means All Products With The Federally Defined THC Level For Hemp Derived From, Or Made By, Processing Hemp Plants Or Hemp Plant Parts, That Are Prepared In A Form Available For Commercial Sale, Including, But Not Limited To, Cosmetics, Personal Care Products, Food Intended For Animal Or Human Consumption, Cloth, Cordage, Fiber, Fuel, Paint, Paper, Particleboard, Plastics, And Any Product Containing One Or More Hemp-Derived Cannabinoids, Such As Cannabidiol. Unprocessed Or Raw Plant Material, Including Nonsterilized Hemp Seeds, Is Not Considered A Hemp Product.

Thus, in the Palmetto State, you're all set as long as your delta 9 products are derived from hemp and contain no more than 0.3% THC!

Shipping Delta 9 Products to & From South Carolina: Guidelines

Shipping delta 9 products to and from South Carolina is relatively straightforward due to the state's clear legal framework surrounding hemp-derived cannabinoids. However, it's crucial to ensure compliance with federal and state guidelines.

Hemp-derived delta 9 products can be shipped to South Carolina provided they meet the federal 0.3% THC limit. Consumers can purchase delta 9 products online or through local retailers that ship within the state. Online retailers often offer a wider variety of delta 9 products and provide third-party lab results to confirm THC levels.

Retailers and manufacturers in South Carolina can legally ship delta 9 products to other states, provided the products contain no more than 0.3% THC and comply with the recipient state's regulations. It's important to verify the legal status of delta 9 THC in the destination state before shipping.

Key Guidelines for Shipping Delta 9 Products to & From South Carolina:

  • Legal Compliance: Ensure all delta 9 products comply with the 0.3% THC limit as defined by the Farm Bill.
  • Product Selection: Choose from various hemp-derived delta 9 products, such as Delta 9 Gummies, Delta  Tinctures, and, vapes etc
  • Secure Packaging: Package products securely to prevent damage and ensure privacy during shipping.
  • Documentation: Include proper documentation, such as third-party lab results, confirming THC compliance.
  • Carrier Policies: Verify that the chosen shipping carrier permits the transportation of hemp-derived products. UPS, FedEx, and USPS allow the shipping of hemp products with strict guidelines.
  • State Regulations: Be aware of delta 9's legal status in other states when shipping products out of South Carolina.

Growth of the South Carolina Cannabis Market: Delta 9's Legal Status vs. Medical Marijuana's Challenges

In South Carolina, while hemp-derived compounds like delta 9 are legally permissible, the state maintains strict prohibitions against both recreational and medical marijuana.

However, there is some legislative movement concerning medical cannabis, particularly for specific medical scenarios. Here’s a detailed examination of the current situation for South Carolina residents regarding cannabis.

South Carolina’s Approach to Medical Cannabis Legislation

Despite the absence of a legal medical marijuana program, South Carolina has implemented measures for the use of cannabis in medical treatments. Under Senate Bill 1035, also known as Julian’s Law, passed in 2014, the state permits the use of CBD oils that contain no more than 0.9% THC. These oils can be prescribed by licensed physicians specifically for treating severe epilepsy cases.

is delta 9 legal in south carolina

In a historic move in 2022, the South Carolina Senate passed the South Carolina Compassionate Care Act (Bill 3361) for the first time, proposing the establishment of a regulated medical marijuana program aimed at aiding seriously ill patients. The proposed conditions covered under this bill included:

  • Cancer
  • Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
  • Neurological diseases or disorders, such as epilepsy
  • Sickle cell anemia
  • PTSD (with special documentation)
  • Autism
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Cachexia
  • Conditions causing persistent nausea or homebound status
  • Terminal illnesses
  • Chronic conditions with severe muscle spasms
  • Conditions where opioids are prescribed based on current medical standards

This program was designed to enable licensed physicians to prescribe medical cannabis, which would then be distributed through state-approved therapeutic cannabis pharmacies. Patients would need to establish a bona fide patient-doctor relationship and be diagnosed with one of the specified conditions to qualify.

Restrictions and Limitations Under the Proposed Medical Cannabis Bill

Despite the progressive steps taken by the South Carolina Senate, the bill faced significant limitations:

  • Prohibition of smokable and raw cannabis forms
  • No allowance for patients or physicians to grow cannabis
  • Physicians required to specify permissible cannabis amounts for a 14-week period
  • Illegal to operate vehicles or perform tasks that could constitute negligence or professional malpractice while under the influence
  • Possibility of revoking cards and facing civil or criminal charges for cardholders and medical establishments

However, in a disappointing development for advocates and potential patients, the bill was defeated in the House, postponing any potential relief for those seeking medical cannabis treatments until at least the next legislative session.

This setback underscored the ongoing challenges and the slow pace of cannabis reform in South Carolina.

Comparing Delta 9 vs. Delta 8 in South Carolina: Legal Status Explained

In South Carolina, the legality between delta 8 vs delta 9 is defined by federal and state legislation. The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, commonly known as the Farm Bill, legalized hemp and its derivatives at the federal level.

Under this law, hemp is defined as any cannabis plant containing no more than 0.3% delta 9 THC on a dry-weight basis. This distinction is crucial because marijuana, which has higher THC levels, remains illegal federally.

South Carolina aligned with the federal Farm Bill by passing House Bill 3449 in 2019. This legislation legalized hemp-derived cannabinoids like delta 9 and delta 8 THC within state borders, as long as they contain no more than 0.3% delta 9 THC. As a result, both compounds are legal in South Carolina, provided they meet these THC limits.

  • Delta 9 THC: This compound is the primary psychoactive element in cannabis and is found naturally in both hemp and marijuana plants. It is the more potent of the two cannabinoids, producing strong psychoactive effects. Delta 9 is tightly regulated and is only legal if derived from hemp and contains no more than 0.3% THC.

  • Delta 8 THC: This compound is a naturally occurring cannabinoid but in much smaller quantities. It can be synthesized from hemp-derived CBD through a chemical process. Delta 8 has milder psychoactive effects compared to delta 9, but its legal status remains ambiguous due to ongoing debates and regulation changes.

Key Differences Between Delta 9 and Delta 8 in South Carolina:

  • Psychoactive Effects: Delta 9 has stronger psychoactive effects compared to delta 8.
  • Potency: Delta 9 is more potent than delta 8.
  • Federal Status: Both delta 9 and delta 8 THC derived from hemp are federally legal.
  • State Status: Both compounds are legal in South Carolina if derived from hemp and contain less than 0.3% delta 9 THC.
  • Market Availability: Delta 9 products are less common than delta 8 products in South Carolina.
  • Medical Use: Delta 9 THC is strictly regulated for medical use, while delta 8 THC is more accessible.

Comparison Table: Delta 8 vs Delta 9 in SC

Aspect Delta 9 THC Delta 8 THC
Legality (Federal) Legal (if ≤0.3% THC) Legal (if derived from hemp)
Legality (State) Legal in SC (if ≤0.3% THC) Legal in SC (if derived from hemp)
Psychoactive Effects Strong Milder
Potency Higher Lower
Source Hemp & Marijuana Hemp
Medical Use Limited More Accessible
Market Availability Less Common More Common

South Carolina's Approach to Delta 9 THC: Medical vs. Recreational

South Carolina maintains a conservative stance on cannabis use, distinguishing between medical and recreational use. Here's an overview of how the state handles medical and recreational delta 9 THC.

Medical Delta 9 THC:

  • Limited Access: The state does not have a comprehensive medical cannabis program.
  • CBD Oil Law: South Carolina allows patients with severe epilepsy to use CBD oil containing no more than 0.9% THC.
  • Strict Regulations: Requires physician recommendation and documentation for CBD oil use.

Recreational Delta 9 THC:

  • Strict Prohibition: Recreational marijuana is strictly illegal in South Carolina.
  • Possession Penalties:
    • First Offense: Misdemeanor, up to 30 days in jail, and a $200 fine.
    • Second Offense: Misdemeanor, up to a year in jail, and a $2,000 fine.

Hemp-Derived Delta 9 THC:

  • Legal Status: Hemp-derived delta 9 is legal under federal and state law, as long as it contains no more than 0.3% THC.
  • Market Availability: Freely available in smoke shops, health stores, and online retailers.

Key Differences Between Medical & Recreational Delta 9 THC in South Carolina:

  • Legal Status: Medical delta 9 is only available in the form of CBD oil for specific conditions, while recreational delta 9 is illegal.
  • Accessibility: Hemp-derived delta 9 is more accessible than medical delta 9.
  • Penalties: Recreational delta 9 possession carries severe penalties, while hemp-derived delta 9 is legally protected.

Delta 9 Legality in South Carolina vs. Other States

The legality of delta 9 THC varies greatly across the United States, with each state implementing its own rules and restrictions.

In South Carolina, hemp-derived delta 9 is legal if it contains no more than 0.3% THC, while recreational marijuana remains strictly prohibited. Here's a look at how South Carolina's delta 9 laws compare to those of other states.

is delta 9 legal in south carolina

Comparison of Delta 9 Legality in South Carolina vs. Other States:

  1. California: Both hemp-derived and marijuana-derived delta 9 THC are legal for recreational and medical use.
  2. Colorado: Similar to California, both hemp-derived and marijuana-derived delta 9 are legal for recreational and medical use.
  3. Florida: Hemp-derived delta 9 is legal, while marijuana-derived delta 9 is legal for medical use only.
  4. New York: Both hemp-derived and marijuana-derived delta 9 THC are legal for recreational and medical use.
  5. Ohio: Hemp-derived delta 9 is legal, while marijuana-derived delta 9 is only legal for medical use.
  6. Indiana: Hemp-derived delta 9 is legal, but marijuana-derived delta 9 remains strictly prohibited.
  7. Texas: Hemp-derived delta 9 is legal, while marijuana-derived delta 9 remains illegal for recreational use but is allowed for limited medical purposes.
  8. Alabama: Hemp-derived delta 9 is legal, while marijuana-derived delta 9 is illegal for recreational use and restricted for medical use.
  9. Georgia: Hemp-derived delta 9 is legal, while marijuana-derived delta 9 is legal for medical use only.
  10. Michigan: Both hemp-derived and marijuana-derived delta 9 are legal for recreational and medical use.
  11. Minnesota: Hemp-derived delta 9 is legal, while marijuana-derived delta 9 is legal for medical use only.
  12. North Carolina: Hemp-derived delta 9 is legal, while marijuana-derived delta 9 is strictly illegal.
  13. Tennessee: Hemp-derived delta 9 is legal, while marijuana-derived delta 9 remains illegal for recreational use.

Comparison Table:

State Hemp-Derived Delta 9 THC Marijuana-Derived Delta 9 THC
South Carolina Legal (if ≤0.3% THC) Illegal
California Legal Legal
Colorado Legal Legal
Florida Legal Legal (Medical Only)
New York Legal Legal
Ohio Legal Legal (Medical Only)
Indiana Legal Illegal
Texas Legal Illegal (Recreational Only)
Alabama Legal Illegal (Recreational Only)
Georgia Legal Legal (Medical Only)
Michigan Legal Legal
Minnesota Legal Legal (Medical Only)
North Carolina Legal Illegal
Tennessee Legal Illegal (Recreational Only)

Things to Consider Before Buying Delta 9 in South Carolina

Even though delta 9 THC derived from hemp is legal in South Carolina, there are important factors to keep in mind when purchasing products. Not all delta 9 products are created equal, so understanding what to look for can help ensure a safe and positive experience. Here are some key considerations:

  • Verify third-party lab results.
  • Choose organic hemp products.
  • Buy from reputable brands with positive reviews.
  • Opt for CO2 or ethanol extraction methods.
  • Select a product type that suits your needs.
  • Ensure state compliance with South Carolina regulations.
  • Check clear labeling with accurate THC content.

Future Predictions for Delta 9 in South Carolina

The legal landscape surrounding delta 9 THC and other hemp-derived cannabinoids in South Carolina is expected to evolve in the coming years. As public opinion shifts and more states legalize cannabis for recreational and medical use, South Carolina may follow suit.

is delta 9 legal in south carolina

Potential Changes and Predictions:

  • Medical Cannabis Legislation: South Carolina may introduce comprehensive medical cannabis legislation, expanding beyond CBD oil to include higher-THC products for patients with qualifying conditions.
  • Recreational Cannabis Legalization: While currently unlikely, recreational cannabis legalization could be considered if neighboring states implement successful recreational programs.
  • Delta 9 THC Regulations: Stricter regulations may be introduced to ensure product quality, labeling accuracy, and THC compliance.
  • Market Expansion: An increase in delta 9 THC product availability, with more smoke shops and online retailers offering a wider range of products.
  • Public Support: Growing public support for cannabis legalization and reform may influence state lawmakers to reconsider current policies.
  • Research Initiatives: Expanded research into the benefits and risks of delta 9 THC may lead to more informed policymaking.
  • Legal Challenges: Potential legal challenges could arise regarding the state's strict recreational marijuana laws, especially if surrounding states implement more lenient policies.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the legality of delta 9 THC in South Carolina is a complex issue governed by both federal and state regulations.

While hemp-derived delta 9 is legal if it contains no more than 0.3% THC, marijuana-derived delta 9 remains strictly prohibited. South Carolina's conservative stance on cannabis use means that recreational marijuana is still illegal, with severe penalties for possession.

Despite this, the state's limited CBD oil law and legal hemp-derived delta 9 products offer some relief to those seeking the benefits of cannabinoids. As public support grows and more states embrace comprehensive cannabis programs, South Carolina may eventually expand its cannabis legislation.

Until then, it's crucial to stay informed about delta 9 THC laws, prioritize lab-tested products, and choose reputable brands to ensure a safe and legal experience.

FAQs

Q1: Do I need a prescription to buy delta 9 in South Carolina?

A1: No, you do not need a prescription to buy hemp-derived delta 9 products in South Carolina.

Q2: Are there age restrictions for purchasing delta 9 in South Carolina?

A2: Yes, you must be at least 21 years old to purchase hemp-derived delta 9 products in South Carolina.

Q3: Is recreational marijuana legal in South Carolina?

A3: No, recreational marijuana remains strictly illegal in South Carolina. 

Q4: Can I travel with delta 9 products within South Carolina?

A4: Yes, you can travel with hemp-derived delta 9 products within South Carolina, provided they contain no more than 0.3% THC.

Q5: What forms of delta 9 products are available in South Carolina?

A5: In South Carolina, you can find delta 9 gummies, tinctures, vapes, edibles, and more, as long as they are hemp-derived.

Q6: Can I grow hemp to produce delta 9 in South Carolina?

A6: Yes, but you need a license to grow hemp for commercial purposes. All hemp plants must contain no more than 0.3% THC.

Q7: How do I find third-party lab results for delta 9 products?

A7: Most reputable brands provide third-party lab results on their websites. Look for a Certificate of Analysis (COA) that verifies THC compliance and checks for contaminants.

Q8: Is there a possession limit for hemp-derived delta 9 in South Carolina?

A8: No, there are currently no possession limits for hemp-derived delta 9 products in South Carolina.

Q9: Does South Carolina recognize out-of-state medical marijuana cards?

A9: No, South Carolina does not recognize out-of-state medical marijuana cards.

Q10: How can I find reputable brands for delta 9 products in South Carolina?

A10: Look for brands with positive customer reviews, transparent business practices, and detailed lab results on their websites.