Is Marijuana Illegal in Boston? The Short Answer is “No”

Are you wondering, “Is marijuana illegal in Boston?” It’s legal statewide, but with restrictions.

Marijuana laws in Massachusetts have changed multiple times since the substance was decriminalized in 2008. Today, recreational cannabis is legal statewide, however, there are restrictions on its use similar to alcohol and tobacco laws. For example, the minimum legal age to smoke marijuana is 21, the same as the legal drinking age.

Even though possession for personal use is legal (up to 1 oz on a person, up to 10 oz in the home), some cities in Massachusetts have banned cannabis dispensaries. So, it makes sense that you might wonder, “Is marijuana illegal in Boston?” The short answer is: It is legal to consume, purchase, possess, and grow marijuana in Boston. However, it is still possible to be arrested for marijuana-related offenses. Read on to learn about the Massachusetts laws governing marijuana use.

Schedule a free consultation with Attorney Keren Goldenberg through our online contact form, or by phone: 978-221-2503 (Lowell), 617-431-2701 (Belmont).

State-Level Marijuana Regulations

The question “Is marijuana illegal in Boston?” may still be ringing in your ears. While marijuana is legal in Massachusetts, the list below outlines some circumstances that could lead to a marijuana-related charge.

Public Places

Under state law, you can’t consume marijuana in public places. “Consuming” includes smoking, eating, and vaping marijuana products. Parks like the Boston Common, as well as public squares and beaches all qualify as public places. 

In general, where tobacco smoking is prohibited, so is marijuana smoking. So, is marijuana illegal in Boston? If you’re smoking it in a prohibited area, yes.

Marijuana and Motor Vehicles

While on the road, all cannabis products must either be stored in a locked glove compartment or in the trunk in a closed container. There can be no open containers of marijuana within reach of the driver.

To your question, “Is marijuana illegal in Boston?” It is illegal in all of Massachusetts to drive under the influence of marijuana.

Limitations on Possession

Individuals are allowed up to 10 oz of marijuana in the home. If the quantity is over 1 oz, then it must be stored in a locked container. One oz is the maximum amount someone can have on them out in public.

Restrictions Set by Employers and Landlords

If you ask your employer, “Is marijuana illegal in Boston?” They might say, “It is in my business.” Employers are not required to accommodate workplace cannabis use. In fact, if an employer sets a restriction against off-duty cannabis use, it is within their right to fire employees who are found in violation.

Landlords can also put restrictions on tenants’ marijuana use. It is legal for a landlord to add a clause in a lease stating that smoking cannabis is prohibited on the rental property. That said, landlords cannot limit cannabis consumption “by means other than smoking.”

If You’re Still Asking “Is Marijuana Illegal in Boston?” Call Our Office

Attorney Keren Goldenberg is a wealth of knowledge in the developing arena of marijuana law. If you or a loved one are facing legal challenges related to marijuana, it’s never too early to call on an experienced attorney. Contact the office online for a free consultation or call the numbers listed below.


The Law Offices of Keren Goldenberg

97 Central St. #403

Lowell, MA 01852


The Law Offices of Keren Goldenberg

19A Alexander Ave.

Belmont, MA 02478