What Form of ID Can Be Used At A Dispensary?

Whether you are shopping at a licensed medical dispensary or a recreational dispensary, you will need the proper form of identification to even enter the store in the first place. According to state laws though, the type of identification required might vary. The ID must verify your age and identification, normally with a date of birth noted and a photo included. However, from there each state will have a different set of requirements for licensed dispensaries to follow.

It is important for Budtenders to verify our age and make sure you are purchasing their products legally. They are just doing their job to keep their state license and continue operating. So, before you head to your local dispensary, read on to learn what kind of ID card you will need to make a purchase. If all else fails, you can always call ahead to the dispensary before making a visit, just to double-check.

5 Forms of Identification NOT Accepted At a Dispensary

There are a few forms of identification that are normally not accepted by dispensaries. This is because these forms of ID fail to clearly identify you in a legal sense. You need to show legal proof of age to enter a licensed dispensary and make a purchase, and the forms of ID mentioned below just do not cut it.

1. Student ID Card

Although a student ID card might grant you access to buildings and dorm rooms across a university campus, it will not gain you access to the neighboring recreational dispensary. A student ID card does not act as a legal form of identification but will help to identify you as a student on campus. They often do not make note of your birth date or age though, which means they cannot be accepted by dispensaries.

2. Social Security Card

Although a social security card will undeniably identify who you are, it will not work to help you make a purchase at a dispensary. A social security card is also a valuable document to be carrying around in your wallet, and you should be careful to not misplace it. It’s best to leave the social security card at home and try another form of ID instead at a dispensary.

3. Pilot’s License

You might think that a pilot’s license is just a fancy form of a driver’s license, but the state laws regarding dispensaries do not see them as equivalents. The state of Oregon even specifically includes pilot’s licenses on the list of forms of ID that dispensaries cannot accept. They also include green cards, FAST cards, prison ID cards, firearm permits, New York City identification cards, Veteran Health identification cards, and all other forms of ID listed above.

4. Health Insurance Card

Although you might be a medical patient at a dispensary, your medical card is not a valid form of identification. These cards do typically make note of your birth date or age, but they do not count as a legal form of identification in a dispensary. It’s best to keep your medical card in a safe place and not pull it out in line at a dispensary.

5. Credit Card

A credit card is virtually useless at this time in a dispensary, whether you are trying to use it as a form of identification or as a form of payment. Due to current federal regulations, it is difficult for dispensaries to process credit cards as payment. And credit cards do not typically include a photo of you or your birth date, so they cannot help a Budtender verify if you are old enough to make a legal purchase.

5 Forms of Identification Accepted At a Dispensary

Now that you know what forms of identification a dispensary cannot legally accept as proof of your age, it’s time to turn our attention to the forms of ID you can use. This list will vary state by state though, and it’s important to look up the laws regarding identification and dispensaries where you live. Some states may accept all forms of ID discussed below, while a few will accept fewer or different forms of ID. You might even have to provide multiple forms of ID in some states. However, the forms of ID listed below are generally accepted by recreational dispensaries across the United States. But please make note that this article is intended to guide you but does not contain legal advice specific to where you live. Dispensaries have a variety of reasons to refuse service, but you can prevent your ID from being one of them by checking your local dispensary regulations.

1. State-Issued Driver’s License

A state-issued driver’s license will be your best bet when shopping at a dispensary. This form of ID is legally accepted as proof of age and provides your birth date alongside a color photo of you. A Driver’s license is also commonly accepted at bars and liquor stores and is a natural choice for most people.

2. United States ID Card

However, if you don’t have a state-issued driver’s license then you can usually use a United States ID card instead. These ID Cards can still legally verify your age and identity, they just don’t give you the license to operate vehicles like a driver’s license. State ID cards are also accepted at bars and liquor stores as well can be an easy choice when you head into a dispensary.

3. Passport

The next best option for identifying your age at a dispensary is with a passport. That means that, in most states, you can use an international passport as a form of ID at a dispensary when you are visiting the United States. A passport is the ultimate form of international identification, but they are also pricey to replace. Be careful to not misplace your passport to a dispensary or anywhere else.

4. United States Military ID Card

Most states will also accept United States Military ID cards as a legal form of identification at a dispensary. These ID cards have all the essential pieces for identifying you and act in a similar way to a state ID card. However, you should double-check that you can use a military ID before bringing it in as your only form of identification to a dispensary.

5. State-Issued Medical Card

If you are shopping at a licensed medical dispensary, then you will also need to have a medical card to go along with your legal form of identification. This will prove that you are licensed to purchase at a medical dispensary, but it will not confirm your identity. You will still need at least one other form of legal identification to make a purchase with your medical card.

No matter which form of accepted ID card you choose to use, it must be valid and not expired. Some states will accept ID cards from other US territories as well, such as the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, or United States Virgin Islands. However, your date of birth, name, photo, and physical description are all needed to make it count as an accepted form of ID at a dispensary.


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