Is CBD oil legal in Croatia?

Legality of CBD and Hemp in Croatia

Croatia is home to some of the Mediterranean’s most beautiful sceneries. The Croatian coastline has over 1,000 islands which each year attract millions of tourists. And, unknown to many, Croatia is also home to one of Europe’s most relaxed cannabis laws. You might now wonder: ‘Is CBD legal in Croatia? Read on to learn.

Are CBD products legal to use and buy in Croatia?

Yes, since the acceptance of Ivana Ćelić’s amendment to the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ), the use, growth, and purchase of CBD is fully legal in Croatia. You can therefore freely import and use any CBD products. Natural Hemp Life offers a wide range of high-quality CBD products to facilitate your everyday lifestyle. Enjoy fast and discrete shipping anywhere in Croatia.

Drug laws and drug penalties in Croatia

In 2001 Croatia passed and has since been updating its Drug Abuse Prevention Act (DAPA). The DAPA and the Criminal Code for Croatia regulate the drug manufacturing, possession, and trade conditions.

In Croatia, the current legislative system prohibits unauthorized cultivation, possession, and trafficking of drugs. Those who violate the law are prosecuted under the Penal Code [2]. But also, the DAPA outlines a framework for drug prevention and drug user rehabilitation.

Therefore, the possession of small quantities of drugs for personal consumption was reduced to a misdemeanor in 2013 from a criminal offense. Nowadays a fine is punishable for possession of minor quantities of drugs. The fine varies by the amount and type of drug involved and ranges from €650 to €2,600.

Illegal cultivation, manufacture, and processing of drugs without any intent to sell can result in prison sentences of up to five years. If the prosecution proves the motive of the person to distribute the drugs, jail terms will go up to twelve years [1].

Worsening circumstances, such as previous convictions, being part of a criminal network, involving children in drug trafficking, or causing serious harm to others may further increase the sentences to 15 to 20 years in prison.

Laws of Cannabis drugs in Croatia

The 2013 DAPA update created a distinction between the different illicit substances, now divided into two categories — heavy drugs and light drugs.
Cannabis is considered a light drug, and in Croatia, possession of a small amount of marijuana for personal use is considered a minor offense.

While possessing a small amount of cannabis can result in a fine of up to € 2,600, most cannabis fines range from €650 to €1,300, respectively.

But that is the thing here. The current legislative system does not specify what, and what qualifies as a ‘small’ quantity. If you are caught in Croatia with cannabis, one of two things will happen, based on the amount of weed you are found with.

When caught in Croatia with a visibly small amount of cannabis — a spliff, one or perhaps even two grams of fresh or dried cannabis flower — you can get a fine directly from the police officer who caught you. If that happens, you’ll be forced on the spot to pay the fine, but you won’t face any other legal issues.

If you’re caught with a larger amount of cannabis, or if the policeman who catches you suspects you’re planning to sell the weed, you’ll have to go to court.

Now, as the law does not define the maximum amount of cannabis that can be possessed in Croatia for personal use, the arresting police officer and the judge who presides over your case have the freedom to decide on your penalty based on a variety of factors and circumstances. Weighing in on the decision is the amount of cannabis in your possession, your sex, your criminal record, and other considerations [2].

Each possession case is special and Croatian judges can be either compassionate or strict. Realistically speaking, even most strict courts will pass a fairly minor amount of cannabis as a personal possession and let you get away with a fine, albeit a bigger one, although there are no promises they can [1].

Penalties you face if you break the drug laws in Croatia

One of the interesting news about the DAPA 2013 amendment is that it allows lawmakers to try alternate solutions to incarceration for people who have been arrested possessing minor quantities of drugs and may potentially face up to six months’ prison sentences [3].

Croatian judges could recommend fines, community service, probation, and treatment for those accused of possession of drugs. Sometimes, even if the judge considers it ‘insignificant,’ the offense may be dismissed. Any lawbreakers can require up to three years to undergo mandatory drug rehab.

Use of marijuana medical field in Croatia

Croatia legalized medical marijuana back in 2015 after arresting a man with multiple sclerosis (MS) to keep his symptoms in check for growing weeds. His detention shocked the general public, which immediately passed a medicinal cannabis bill.

[1] In the Croatian cannabis program, patients over 18 who suffer from MS, cancer, AIDS, and epilepsy may join. Patients under 18 can now join the system but can only benefit from medical therapies with a legal guardian’s permission.

The Croatian medical cannabis program nowadays allows citizens to purchase cannabis medication with a digital prescription directly from the pharmacy. Cannabis prescriptions expire in 30 days and the patient’s purchase is limited to 7.5 grams per month.

Each medical cannabis is actually imported from Canada in Croatian pharmacies.

Further future of cannabis in Croatia

The drug legislation in Croatia is somewhat relaxed but cannabis users are still being stigmatized. But that could change in the near future.

Mirela Holy, a Croatian MP, announced a cannabis law going to public debate in February 2020.

The bill suggests a collaborative administration model where the state will work with private companies to retain the high-quality commodity on the market. It would also allow any adult citizen to cultivate up to nine female cannabis plants rich in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) for personal needs.

Holy stated that cannabis cultivation would help to fight climate change but she also discussed the positive economic value of the weed. She also noted that in recent years the Croatian population has changed their opinions on cannabis and that the awareness of cannabis by the media has increased, which has helped with the discrimination against marijuana [3].

References:

[1] https://straininsider.com/legal-situation-cannabis-croatia/

[2] https://cbdtesters.co/2020/06/23/is-croatia-trying-to-legalize-recreational-cannabis/

[3] http://ass.fiduciometro.it/is-cbd-legal-in-croatia.html

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Please note: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this article, it should not be intended to provide legal advice, as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and or a lawyer.

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