A medical marijuana caregiver in Arizona is a person that has agreed to assist a medical marijuana patient with the use of medical marijuana and has an Arizona medical marijuana identification card. The Arizona Medical Marijuana Act allows patients to designate caregivers that will help them purchase and use medical marijuana. The state also allows caregivers to cultivate marijuana for their patients. In Arizona, a caregiver can assist up to five medical marijuana patients at any one time.
Per the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act, qualified medical marijuana patients can designate caregivers to assist them in cultivating, purchasing, or using medical marijuana. The Act mandates custodial parents or legal guardians of minor patients (patients under 18 years) to serve as their designated caregivers.
The Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) manages the medical marijuana program in the state. A person must be designated as a caregiver by a medical marijuana patient before applying to the ADHS to be registered as a caregiver. Per the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act, the eligibility requirements for a person to be designated as a caregiver are:
Aged 21 years or older
Consents to assist with a patient's medical marijuana use
Has not been convicted of a violent crime
Has not been convicted of a crime involving a controlled substance in the preceding 10 years
An intending medical marijuana caregiver can apply on the ADHS Individual Licensing Portal after the designating medical marijuana patient has been approved and registered on the medical marijuana program. An applicant must provide the designating patient's application ID, full name, and date of birth during the online application process. The Department provides a checklist to guide applicants through the application process. The following are needed to complete an application for a medical marijuana caregiver identification card in Arizona:
Caregiver's current photograph in JPG, PNG, or GIF format
Caregiver's Arizona driver's license, Arizona identification card, Arizona registry identification card, or US passport
Signed and completed Medical Marijuana Caregiver Attestation form
Caregiver's Marijuana Program Fingerprint Verification form
$200 application fee paid via MasterCard or Visa
Applicants can obtain fingerprint services from local law enforcement agencies or private fingerprinting companies. Caregivers must send their rolled fingerprint cards and fingerprint verification forms by mail to:
Arizona Department of Health Services
ATTN: Marijuana Department
PO Box 19000
Phoenix, AZ 85005
The ADHS will send medical marijuana identification cards to successful applicants. The Arizona Medical Marijuana Act prohibits the payment of wages or compensations to caregivers. However, patients can reimburse their caregivers for the costs incurred in assisting them.
Arizona medical marijuana patients can designate family members or friends as their caregivers. They can also get referrals from existing medical marijuana patients. The Arizona Department of Health Services does not maintain a list of approved caregivers. The ADHS has no provision for remote caregivers.
Caregivers in Arizona can buy up to 2.5 ounces of usable marijuana for each patient under their care as long as they have their medical marijuana caregiver identification cards. Therefore, they can possess a maximum of 12.5 ounces of usable medical marijuana. They are also exempt from arrest or prosecution by law enforcement agents if found with marijuana within the allowable limits for the patients registered with them.
The Arizona Medical Marijuana Act allows caregivers to grow marijuana for their patients, provided the patients do not live within 25 miles of registered marijuana dispensaries. Those patients must have designated their caregivers as their marijuana growers while applying for or renewing their medical marijuana identification cards. A caregiver can grow up to 12 marijuana plants at home for each patient that designates them as their grower. Therefore, a caregiver assisting five medical marijuana patients can grow 60 marijuana plants in their home.
Per the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act, a medical marijuana card holder must grow marijuana in an enclosed, secured facility. The facility can be a greenhouse, closet, room, or any other enclosed area secured with locks that permit access only to the card holder. The enclosed area, if outdoor, must be surrounded by solid 10-foot walls of metal, stone, or concrete to prevent the marijuana plants from being seen by the public.