medical_marijuana_card_001In California, there is no state regulation or set standard in regards to cultivation and/or distribution of medical marijuana. Guidelines, regulations and rules are left to the jurisdiction of each county in California.

Before you get your medical marijuana card you will need to see a Medical marijuana doctor in California.

As of May, 2013, all but three counties have implemented a medical marijuana program. Judging by recent developments in the following three counties, we can conclude that they are simply not ready to be a part of the medical marijuana program:

1.     Mariposa: Pending but highly unlikely.

2.     Sutter: Awaiting resolution.

3.     Colusa: Dispensaries banned.

To Register for a Medical Marijuana Card in California

California Department of Public Health

Public Health Policy and Research Branch

Attention:  Medical Marijuana Program Unit
MS 5202
P.O. Box 997377
Sacramento, CA  95899-7377

If you have any more questions please contact the California Department of Public Health.

Medical Marijuana Card Application Fees:

State Admin Fees: $66.00 Patient/Caregiver $33.00 Medi-Cal Patients

Please note these are the State administration fees only; Counties add on their own administration fees. For the actual cost in your county please contact your county medical marijuana program


Author Mark Levins

More posts by Mark Levins

Join the discussion 80 Comments

  • Medical Cards for marijuana are always a good idea. Can they help you if you get caught on a drug test? I mean, having medical marijuana could help you get some extra points when trying to pass a marijuana drug test. If you show the card to your employer who is testing you for drugs should mean that, of course, you are using marijuana but you should be at least partially covered, right?

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  • Michael says:

    Nowadays you have the great opportunity to get your legal Medical Marijuana Card. You can do it just being at home. Follow the link
    Recently I got it here in 10 mins. The fast & trustworthy service.

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  • So, now I also can have my own medical Marijuana card in California. Thanks for your so helping blog because I am waiting for this card for last 2 months but don’t know the procedure. So all thanks to you 🙂

  • Thank you for sharing this information! At least now we have an idea how to get a card.

  • Jerry says:

    I have been going to Alternative Health Solutions in Modesto for the past 5 years. I have nothing but great things to say about everyone there. Very professional and thorough. Answered all my questions and no sitting around waiting for hours like some other mills.
    Call them they will take care of you

  • Mike says:

    Great marijuana doctor in san jose – Dr.Brown at THC Doctor. Just renewed my card for just $39

  • Leo says:

    Got my cannabis card for just $49 at THC Medical Doctor in San Jose.
    Very professional, legit and has awesome deals on their website!

  • Joseph says:

    Here is a great clinic that issues the cards
    I’ve used them for past 4 years and love the service sand doctors.

  • SERGIO says:


  • JOny says:

    Hey Does Anybody Know If You Have To Be Born in The U.S.A to Get The Medical Card? i Was Born In Mexico But i Ben Living Here All My Life Sence a Kid Does Anybody Know if They Would Accept a Mexican Consular Or Sumething ?

    • well im from mexico i have my consular id i got my recomendation with it in Los Angeles now i moved to santa cruz i been havong problems here cuz the mostly of shop they request me my ca id but i guess u only need a proof or living in ca…im still searching for it..

  • Morgan says:

    In the past few years, the number of doctors providing medical marijuana recommendations have increased drastically bringing down the consultation fees to between $80 – 150 for a one-year recommendation. Sometimes discounts are available for renewing a recommendation. Also some doctors charge discounted rates for shorter periods (i.e. 3 to 6 months). Doctors are also actively marketing to potential patients and advertise low base rates which they increase before receiving the final recommendation. Some doctors will try to up-sell ID cards and other items. However, their ID card serves no real purpose and should not be confused with the state-issued ID cards (under SB420) which we discussed above. Most Califonia medical marijuana dispensaries/collectives will not accept the doctor’s ID cards and will still require that you present your original, signed (and often embossed) recommendation letter to become a member. Once you are a member of the collective (with a valid recommendation on file) most of them will accept a standard California ID for entry (if they don’t recognize you). Visit for more Califonia medical marijuana information.

  • Benjamin says:


  • You DONT have to be a resident. I live in New Mexico and went to Cali for 1 month. They gave me one.

  • Tudo says:

    How long must we live in california before being able to purchase medical marijuana? I’ve been a chronic pain patient in fl for several years and am contemplating moving to california despite the state having an income tax which Fla doesn’t have and appears at first glance about 20% higher cost than boca raton fla so it’s higher. But at my age I’m afraid of the legal problems that could result in fla plus it’s bound to get more difficult to obtain as I get older plus I can see that there are places that sell cannabis that specifically helps degenerative disc disease and other painful conditions. I had something called afpak kush that worked tremendously on the cervical spinal pain I endure from the minute I get up to the minute I go to sleep but that was a year ago. I see I could have access to that if we lived in the riverside/corona and southwest of there whenever I want. Does that sound accurate?
    It’s not where I was planning on retiring but if I can find some relief……….we’ll sell our house and move soon. Hence the questions, thank you for the latitude.

  • Tom says:

    I went to Alternative Health Solutions in Modesto to get my card, but you do have to be over 18 years of age.

  • jason says:

    i am planning on relocating to California in (at the most) two years, i have had arthritis (rheumatoid) in my hands for years and now have it in my knees. After the move i plan on applying for a recommendation (maybe will go ahead and get the card to be safe) my question is, with documentation, how hard do you suspect it might be for me to get the recommendation?
    i can’t take opiate based pain meds due to being allergic to opiates, however when it comes to the non opiate based meds i can’t bring myself to take them, never have been able to i have a downright phobia of medication and the ugly side effects of them, it’s a true fear of medications. i won’t even take NSAID’s for a headache. so, any insight would be much appreciated, thx.
    also any info as to where would be the best place to apply would be appreciated too.

  • eddie says:

    yea i got shot and i have a bullet in my back but im only 16 would i be able to get a medical card if i get my parents permission or will i have to wait till im 18

  • The Kushlover says:

    I am going to study in California at UCLA and i would like to get a medical marijuana card.

    But i have a German passport so, is it possible to get one if i am not american but i am going to stay and live in California for a long time?

    • Isis I says:

      you don’t have to be a citizen, but you do have to be a resident. If you don’t have a CA ID card, just bring a bill or something with your name and address.

  • Mike says:

    I’m planning to visit Cali in a month from Florida. My only problem is where can I get a license or permit for medical marijuana?

    • john says:

      I’m pretty sure you have to be a resident of california to get a california state medical marijuana license. there are some states that will honor another states license.

  • IF you are in San Francisco you can goto Best Choice Evaluations, very nice and professional place!

    Check the site out

  • Here is what S.B. 420 clearly states: “(3) Contact the attending physician by facsimile, telephone, or mail to confirm that the medical records submitted by the patient are a true and correct copy of those contained in the physician’s office records. When contacted by a county health department or the county’ s designee, the attending physician shall confirm or deny that the contents of the medical records are accurate.” physicians abide by the guidelines of the California Medical Board and the California medical marijuana laws so that the recommendation that you receive is defendable should you have legal issues as a medical marijuana patient. All of our physicians have licenses in good standing and have not had any actions by the Medical Board. Having a letter from a doctor whose has had problems with the Medical Board puts you at risk and the doctor’s credibility can be put into question

    Something for all to remember You should always check on your doctor before getting your letter of recommendation for medical cannabis. You can get FREE information about your doctor’s legitimacy by going to the following link, enter the doctor’s first and last name, and see if they have had any past or current problems with the medical board. Remember that a doctor who has had issues with the medical board is not very credible in court and will not be able to help defend you. You should also ask if you are being seen by a real doctor (MD or DO) as a physician’s assistant or nurse practitioner cannot legally give you a medical marijuana recommendation and it will not hold up in court. Many places lie so BE CAREFUL

  • Ben says:

    No need for a county or state issued card. All you need is a recommendation from your doctor. Most doctor’s don’t want to deal with the verification process so they send you to places like I went here and got my recommendation and a cultivators license. Confidential and completely legal! Check them out Alternative Health Solutions

  • CannaCare Evaluation Centers says:

    Proposition 215, passed in 1996, allows a physician to recommend cannabis to a patient with a serious and chronic medical condition. This law only provides patients with a legal defense for possession and cultivation. It does not provide immunity from arrest.

    Senate Bill 420, passed in 2002, allows patients to voluntarily register with the State of California Department of Health Medical Marijuana program and receive a state ID card (for a fee). It is a state card issued through the county offices. Registering with the state provides immunity from arrest for the possession and cultivation of medical cannabis.

    Many patients ask if they should get a state ID card. It is your decision based on your personal circumstances. Those patients who cultivate cannabis or have larger quantities in their possession, or those who want immunity from the threat of arrest, often apply for the card. Patients who only have small quantities in the privacy of their home often choose not to get the card.

    If you would like to apply to get the state ID card, you must go to the Department of Health in the county of your primary residence. There is an application and a fee (each county has a different fee). You must show your California ID and your written recommendation for medical cannabis from your physician. Your physician will be contacted and asked to verify the recommendation. You will then receive your card. The process takes less than 30 days.

    This process is completely separate from your physician’s office and must be initiated by you at the county office. If you choose to get the state card, you must sign a medical release form that allows the physician to verify to the state that you were recommended to use medical cannabis. This information is considered confidential and cannot be released without your written permission. CannaCare includes this release form in the intake questionnaire – you can leave it blank if you are not going to apply for the card.

  • ohio_dude says:

    Must I be a California resident to get access to medical marijuana in CA, or could I arrange it in advance then get the marijuana while traveling in CA?

  • Chris says:

    Thanks Juan for posting about the doctor in Modesto I went in and had no problem getting my card.

    Alternative Health Solutions

  • In my legal practice in Roseville, California, I am seeing more and more people with “marijuana cards.” It is my understanding that there are numerous doctors throughout the state who will provide patients with a card if they have a complaint of insomnia.

    Monica Lynch, Attorney at Law

    • jose says:

      Really I’ve had insomnia, and some depression for a while now and was wondering if medical mj would help, i don’t want to be hiked up on pills.

  • steven fiorino says:

    how do i get in my area? (the card)
    i have AIDS and hep c

  • Michael Harshman says:

    i’v had eating problems my hole life due to my dad and mom’s drug problems.

    I have used over the counter drugs to see if it would help but all it did was make me sick. My friend told me about marijuana so i try’ed it and it helped me so much. Is this a good reason to get a card?

  • Vic says:

    I am from Sweden and this summer I’m moving from Sweden to California for work purposes.

    I’ve always had Migraines and I have had Atopic Eczema throughout my whole life. I want to try Marijuana as a treatment so I’m wondering, am I as a migrant allowed to retrieve a Medical Marijuana Card?

  • Jay says:

    Hi all im here on holiday from Australia, and smoke regularly to help relive my inflammatory spinal conditions and scoliosis, how would i go about getting a card / seeing a doctor? … i have brought with me my medical history to prove too.

    im currently in the santa clara area but will travel if needed.

    thanks for your help

  • Eliza Day says:

    Looking for someone in North SF Bay area (Sonoma/Napa/Marin). Have bad insomnia. Was hooked on Xanax for 4 years. Weened off it thanks to edibles. Tired of going through friends.

    Can anyone here recommend someplace in north sf bay area?

  • Juan says:

    Great doctors at Alternative Health Solutions got my card today. Check them out


  • Davey T says:

    Hey guys, Im Irish and will be in LA for the Summer months of june july and august.

    I suffer from insomnia and am wondering can i be issued with a medical marjiuana card?


  • Jesse says:

    I found this doctor from here. Very good people and trustworthy

    I got my card the same day! Now I don’t have to pop hydrocodone like candy to deal with my pain.

  • SF MMJ says:

    Good listings of doctors and providers here!

  • Rick says:

    If you live in Norther Cali these guys are great.

    Grass Valley

  • Jill says:

    Great doctor’s in Modesto. Central valley. Alternative Health Solutions 209-416-0355 Cool office and knowledgable doctors!

  • Alwayswearacup says:

    If anyone needs a card in the LA/Hollywood area, send me an email. I have a referral card for $60. They accept walk-ins and they are legit. I have personally used them.

  • Roland says:

    I went and got a recommendation yesterday at this place in Modesto. Very good I recommend them

    Alternative Health Solutions

  • Joe says:

    Best place in Northern Cali to get a card is Alternative Health Solutions only cost $125 for a new one and $80 for renewal. Very cool people no judging! 209-416-0355

  • Niko says:

    Here’s a great clinic in Modesto, Ca

    Alternative Health Solutions

    Only cost me $125 and it was confidential and quick. I got my recommendation same day I went in.

  • Sativa Rose says:

    I just got my renewal for the 5th year through Great people. It was simple and professional I dealt with the same doctor that seen me all the years before Highly recommended! Their number is 888-420-4202

  • Michael Baker says:

    I just moved here and do n ot yet have a CA DL or state ID I do have documentation of residence and a number of other ID including a Driver License so can I get my card? I am a disabled veteran as well and am wondering if I might reieve a discount?

  • James says:

    The BEST place in Los Angeles for a medical marijuana evaluation is the MEDICAL ADVIOSRY CENTER The people there were super nice and they have real doctors! It was cheap and quick. Five different collective recommended them for my renewal. That says something!!! Called them 323 965 0420.

  • Jeff says:

    Here’s where I got my recommendation it was easy, inexpensive, and quick. Nice office and very friendly. Alternative Health Solutions 209-416-0355 in Modesto, Ca

  • pamela goden says:

    is there medical marijuana available in rhode island and how do i help my mom apply

  • Luticuia says:

    There is a new place in Pacific Beach. The will match anyone’s prices and are open on weekends. It’s called Total Health Club and is in the mission bay medical plaza in an actual legitimate medical building. I schedule an appointment from their website through email.

  • Great place in Los Angeles the place is called medical marijuana evaluation center. only $60 for new patients and $45 for renewals open 7 days a week.

  • This is such an amazing entry and I love to read more of it so that I will be able to look over and have it as an inspiration for further articles to write about when it comes to updates on legalizing marijuana and it’s pros and cons too. I do hope you will get to visit our official website and let us know what you think about it. Here is the link
    and thanks ahead. 🙂

  • Juan says:

    I went to Alternative Health Solutions in Modesto and got my medical recommendation for only $125. 209-416-0355

  • Sean says:

    Is getting a recommendation if one doctor doesn’t approve; a one-time, one doctor, one chance only deal? Or can you go through the entire list to see if one out of all of the medical marijuana doctor’s will approve for a recommendation? Does anyone know or have an answer for this?

  • Sheila Borton says:

    It took me awhile to get my card because I had to find a doctor to sign the forms and to get all my medical forms. It took me 2 months. But now I have the card and it helps me to get my marijuana. See I have seriouse health problem. And it does help me allot.

  • jimbo says:

    What about San Bernardino. I go to Get a card when I leave with proof Of My Illnesses from my regular doctor

  • Jennifer says:

    Here is a place in Modesto that does medical recommendations. Alternative Health Solutions in Modesto, Ca. I went here and had no problem getting my recommendation. I didn’t have records with me so the doctor gave me a temporary in order to give me time to get him the records, then he extended it to a year at no charge. Nice people nice office.

  • Sean says:

    Voice your opinion on Marijuana legalization and Prop 19.

  • Joel says:

    Alternative Health Solutions of Modesto is here for all the patients in Northern California in need of a legitimate Medical Cannabis Recommendation. Our doctors will examine and evaluate your need and write you a recommendation if you qualify, there is no charge if you are denied a recommendation. Our doctors also give limit exceptions (grow certificates) to qualifying patients.

    Call us now at 209-416-0355

    Schedule online also at

  • michael says:

    California is one of the most lenient states to get a medical marijuana card in, but it does have a tricky system that is full of a lot of crooked doctors and growers trying to make a quick buck. I found an awesome site that gives all the details to potential medical marijuana patients and holds you by the hand through the process.

    Check out if you need some help or if you already smoke medical marijuana.

  • CMC says:

    If your are in the Inland Empire and suffer from an illness that medical marijuana could help with we have just opened up a new office in Hemet. Come see us and get your recommendation today. Our office is located at:

    Give us a call at
    951-473-3840 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              951-473-3840      end_of_the_skype_highlighting

    Or visit us online at

  • Floater says:

    i got my card in detroit, can i use it in cali at any dispensary?

  • MediCann says:

    Hello Friends,

    We at MediCann are learning how to better serve our patients. With 190,000+ medical cannabis patients since 2004, MediCann is striving to do what it takes to keep you all happy. We provide 24-7 Verification online or by phone and affordable pricing for all our patients. Contact us today to learn about discounts, including military, veteran and Medi-Cal discounts. With 20 clinics and counting, there is no reason you should wait to become a legal medical cannabis patient in California. For more information, visit our website. Also, visit our blog to learn more about up-to-date news, research and information regarding medical cannabis at

    Thank you.

    Yours in health,
    Legitimate Medical Cannabis Evaluations by Licensed Physicians
    Locations in San Francisco, Anaheim, West Hollywood, Chatsworth, Fresno, Modesto, San Jose, Santa Cruz, Sacramento, Ukiah, and more!
    (866) 632-6627

  • Aaron Schinella says:

    I went to Dr Robert Pallas located at Herb Medical Center on Venice as well. I have been able to get into a majority of the dispensaries which I wanted to, but a few on the west side will not take my rec.

    I tried to call the phone number listed on my rec as the Dr’s office’s phone number, and I recieved some ladies residential landline.

    Pretty shady

  • anthony lamonea says:

    I went to herbal medical center in los angeles, ca. today to get my medical marijuana license. I paid $50.00 and after about 15 min with the doctor recieved a certificate stating that i was allowed to possess and cultivate marijuana.

    The certificate has a rec id# 184780922005167. When I got home this evening I looked it up on their site and yes it is there. My concern is that this document might be fraudulent. While I was looking for clinics on line I found an article stating that the clinic and the doctor I went to had been found earlier this year to be giving out fake certificates.

    The doctors name is Robert Pallas license# A32895 and the clinic is herbal medical center located at 11312 venice blvd. los angeles, ca. 90066. I would appreciate any help You may be able to give me concerning this. I was refered to this clinic by The Rainforest collective also located on venice blvd, in Los Angeles. Thank you in advance for your help. Sincerely, Anthony Lamonea

  • Marijuana Medicine Evaluation Center is committed to providing patients a safe and professional medical marijuana evaluation in California. Medicinal marijuana has proven to be a successful alternative health treatment for hundreds of aliments and diseases. Marijuana Medicine Evaluation Center is not only committed to providing California medical marijuana recommendations but also medicinal marijuana information and news.

    With ten MMEC locations from San Diego to Oakland we are the largest Ca. Medical Marijuana Evaluation Clinic in Ca.

    San Jose

    100 N.Winchester Blvd. #230 Santa Clara, CA 95050


    556 West Grand Ave. Oakland, CA 94612


    333 N. Lantana St. #132 Camarillo, CA 93010

    City of Industry

    13200 Crossroads Prkwy N #430 City of Industry, CA 91746

    Woodland Hills

    20350 Ventura Blvd. #240 Woodland Hills, CA 91364


    600 N. Brand Blvd. #601 Glendale, CA 91203


    15901 Hawthorne Blvd. #460 Lawndale, CA 90260

    Orange County

    1125 E 17th Street #W237 Santa Ana, CA 92701

    San Diego

    5205 Kearny Villa Way #100 San Diego, CA 92123


    1761 Third St #104 Norco, CA 92860

  • jane campson says:

    I visited a doctor over the holidays and received a referral, however my doctors office is now out of business and I’m wondering if that voids my prescription? The numbers on my card to verify are also out of order.

  • MediCann says:

    Hello friends,

    We at MediCann are learning how to better serve our patients. With 180,000+ medical marijuana patients, MediCann is striving to do what it takes to keep them all happy. Please, visit our blog and take our surveys at

    Thank you.

    Yours in health,
    Legitimate Medical Marijuana Evaluations by Licensed Physicians

  • Medical Marijuana Doctor Recommendations Available in Thousand Oaks & Santa Barbara! Apply today and receive your prop 215 medical marijuana photo id card the same day if approved. Medical Marijuana consultations are $99.00 with coupon from Renewals from another M.D. are $80.00.

    Don’t Qualify, you don’t pay!

    If you suffer from Cancer, Chronic Pain, Chron’s Disease, Depression, Epilepsy, Fibromyalgia, Glaucoma, HIV, Insomnia, Migraines, MS, Nausea, Seizures, Anorexia, Anxiety, Stress, or any other serious ailments, We can help you!

    Louis J. Rosner MD President of CannaMed Inc. author of the best seller Multiple sclerosis : new hope and practical advice for people with MS and their families / Louis J. Rosner. Dr. Rosner is a former professor of clinical neurology at UCLA. He was also formerly head of the UCLA’s Multiple Sclerosis Clinic. Dr. Rosner is now writing medical marijuana recommendation for the seriously ill at CannaMed Inc.

    Cannamed of Santa Barbara
    351 South Hitchcock way Ste B210
    Santa Barbara, CA 91305

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