Article by Leaf News
Dear Herb: Can someone pay you to look after, and grow their cannabis on their property if you aren’t their caregiver?
A friend of mine has offered to pay me to grow his cannabis on his property using all of his supplies and legal genetics. Is this legal? — Gardener for Hire
Dear Gardener for Hire: Thanks for your question. As usual, the answer to your question is, “It depends.” Being a caregiver has nothing to do with it.
The gardening-for-a-friend scenario you describe is only legally permissible with a specific kind of personal medical cannabis production licence. First, let’s briefly explore why you can’t legally tend to your friend’s cannabis garden if it only involves growing the regular four recreational cannabis plants permitted for adults under federal law.
The Cannabis Act is explicit: “Unless authorized under this Act, it is prohibited for an individual who is 18 years of age or older… to cultivate, propagate or harvest any cannabis plant at a place that is not their dwelling-house or to offer to do so” (emphasis added).
Put another way, Canadian adults can only grow their four cannabis plants in or on the residential property where they personally live, not on someone else’s residential property or on a non-residential property. (I touched on this in a previous edition of Dear Herb, where I advised a letter-writer that their clever idea for a “grow your own weed” business wouldn’t comply with the law.)
As I mentioned before, the only scenario where your friend can legally compensate you for growing cannabis on his property involves a personal cannabis production licence that registers both you and your friend under Health Canada’s medical cannabis regime. This involves slogging through a multi-step bureaucratic process.
First, your friend would need the appropriate medical cannabis authorization signed by a physician or a nurse practitioner. Then, your friend would need to submit a special “Production of Cannabis for Own Medical Purposes by a Designated Person” application to Health Canada, which includes all kinds of information about the applicant (your friend, in this case), where they live and where they’re planning to have the cannabis grown, plus more information about the designated person (i.e., the grower) and where they live.
If you want to be your friend’s designated medical cannabis grower under this program, you’ll have to sign a declaration attesting that you haven’t been convicted of certain criminal offences in the past 10 years, and that you agree to follow all of Health Canada’s rules around personal medical cannabis production.