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Lady Justice Weed

Recreational Marijuana Use and Parenting


Not only is marijuana legal in Connecticut for both medicinal and recreational purposes, but as of January 10, 2023, adults over the age of 21 can purchase marijuana for recreational use within the state. What does legalizing the use, possession, and sale of marijuana mean for “being under the influence“? What does it mean when you are parenting your child?

To paraphrase a discussion heard recently at court, “Is getting ‘baked’ the equivalent of knocking back a bottle? Or is it the equivalent of having a glass of wine with dinner?“ This will be a new question in many family law files regarding parents who choose to use marijuana recreationally.  Just because something is legal, does not mean that it is safe in all circumstances, or that it would effect people in the same manner as others.

Similarly to alcohol, while the substance is legal, there is an age restriction on it, because one must be sensible in deciding how much to have, if any. If you already have a court-ordered parenting agreement indicating that you cannot use marijuana during parenting time, unless you now have a medical use card, that would very likely still be upheld absent in modification. If, however, your agreement says that you cannot use illegal drugs, then marijuana would now be permitted under the new laws and statutes surrounding such.  However, if the intent in drafting your underlying agreement was to prevent the use of marijuana by one or more of the parties, there could potentially be a post-judgment defense to a modification based upon intent. That said, many people either already have, or will, in the future have, a provision, stating that they cannot abuse alcohol or other substances during their parenting time. This is probably the best rule of thumb to follow so that you, and your children, remain safe during your parenting time.

If you have any questions pertaining to parenting plans and/or how to modify your agreement to better support your blended family, contact us and let Wolf & Shore Law Group go to work for you and help protect your future. Click here, call us at 203.745.315, or email us at

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