May 16, 2024

U.S. Department of Justice Seeks to Reschedule Cannabis

On May 16th, the U.S. Department of Justice published notice that it submitted to the Federal Register a notice of proposed rulemaking initiating a formal rulemaking process to consider moving marijuana from a schedule I to schedule III drug under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). The rule was published in the federal register on May 21, 2024.

Other drugs currently on schedule I include heroin and LSD. Drugs currently on schedule III include and are not limited to products containing less than 90 milligrams of codeine per dosage unit (Tylenol with codeine) and testosterone. This was done after the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services shared its medical and scientific determinations, and the DOJ’s Office of Legal Counsel shared its legal advice. This rule will now go through a notice and comment period. In the interim, cannabis remains a schedule I drug.

The proposal would not legalize cannabis for adult recreational use. It would enable licensed physicians to prescribe it.

You can read more here, including the DOJ’s press release and another link to a 36-page slip opinion from the DOJ’s Office of Legal Counsel. The period for public notice and comment ends June 20, 2024.