Delta-8 has grown incredibly popular, especially in states where adult-use marijuana is illegal. Many people are using delta-8 vapes, oils, edibles, and other products for both recreational and therapeutic effects.
But is delta-8 legal? It depends. Delta-8 THC is federally legal as long as it’s derived from hemp (cannabis with low delta-9 THC levels).
However, some states are starting to ban or regulate this cannabinoid. Here’s an up-to-date look at the delta-8 laws of each state and an interactive legality map.
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Delta 8 THC State Legality Map
We’ll be updating this post and map over time as delta-8 laws continue to change.
Delta 8 State Legality Overview
Although delta-8 THC is legal on the federal level, many states have their own laws that fall into one of four categories:
- Completely legal
- Regulated (only available from licensed retail cannabis stores)
- Unclear/legal gray area
Delta-8 is currently legal in 30 states: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, and in Washington D.C.
In two other states, delta-8 is regulated the same way as recreational cannabis: Connecticut and Michigan.
Meanwhile, delta-8’s legality is unclear in 4 states: Arizona, California, Mississippi, and Kentucky.
Finally, Delta-8 THC is illegal in 14 states: Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Idaho, Iowa, Montana, New York, Nevada, North Dakota, Rhode Island, Vermont, Utah, and Washington.
Check below for state-by-state delta-8 THC legality. Keep in mind that the laws are often confusing, contradictory, unequally enforced, and subject to change.
States Where Delta 8 is Legal
In these states, you should be able to buy delta-8 products without any issues, even if the laws are not always crystal clear.
Delta-8 THC is legal in Alabama. An amendment for banning delta-8 and delta-10 products was removed from Alabama House Bill 2, which passed in April 2021. A similar amendment to the state’s medical marijuana bill was also removed.
For now, delta-8 THC is legal in Florida. But that could change if HB 679 passes. The proposed bill aims to create new regulations for hemp extract products and may even ban hemp-derived delta-8 THC entirely.
Delta-8 THC is legal in Hawaii, except for edible and inhalable products. That means delta 8 gummies, vapes, flower, and drinks are prohibitted.
Hemp-derived delta-8 is legal in Indiana, except for smokable products like sprayed delta-8 hemp flower.
Delta-8 THC is legal in Kansas. Like some other states, Kansas only has legislation banning delta-9 THC.
Delta-8 is partially legal in Louisiana. According to HB640, passed in August 2021, inhalable products (vapes and flower) are banned. Additionally, products can contain no more than 1% total THC by total weight. That means you’re limited to delta-8 edibles, drinks, and topicals in Louisiana.
Delta-8 THC and adult-use cannabis are legal in Maine. The state allows all hemp-derived products.
Delta-8 THC is legal in Maryland, like all hemp-derived products.
Delta-8 THC is legal in Massachusetts. The state also allows recreational cannabis use.
Delta-8 THC is legal in Minnesota. Hemp and hemp-derived products have been legal in the state for several years.
Delta-8 is legal in Missouri. All hemp-derived products are legal in Missouri, which means delta-8 made from hemp is legal as well.
Delta-8 THC is legal in Nebraska. The state exempts hemp-derived products, including delta-8 THC, from its list of controlled substances.
Delta-8 THC is legal in New Hampshire since it counts as a hemp-derived product.
Delta-8 THC is legal in North Carolina. It counts as a hemp-derived product, which are legal in the state.
Delta-8 is legal in Ohio. Although the state’s Medical Marijuana Control Program said that medical marijuana products containing delta-8 THC are subject to specific rules, this doesn’t apply to unregulated products.
So far, the only limitation is that delta 8 cannot be sold to people under 21. But delta 8 products may be restricted to licensed adult-use marijuana dispensaries in the near future.
Delta-8 THC is legal in Pennsylvania. The state allows all hemp-derived products as long as they contain no more than 0.3% delta-9 THC.
The state’s Attorney General also released a letter arguing that delta 8 is illegal but this statement is not legally binding. He left it up to individual law enforcement officers to decide if the state’s Hemp Act is being violated.
Delta 8 is legal in South Dakota. The state allows hemp and hemp-derived products like delta 8 THC.
Delta-8 is legal in Tennessee, as long as it’s made from hemp and contains no more than 0.3% delta-9 THC.
The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) also tried to ban delta-8 THC but was challenged by local delta 8 brand Hometown Hero.
The courts granted a temporary injunction keeping delta 8 legal while the lawsuit is taking place, and the Texas Supreme Court denied the DSHS request to ban delta 8.
Like other hemp-derived products, delta-8 THC is legal in West Virginia.
Delta-8 is legal in Wisconsin, just like all hemp-derived products.
Delta-8 is legal in Wyoming. All hemp-derived products containing less than 0.3% delta-9 THC are legal in the state.
Delta-8 THC is legal in Washington D.C. Hemp-derived products are legal in the District of Columbia, as well as recreational marijuana.
States Where Delta-8 is Regulated
In these states, delta-8 THC is treated the same way as recreational cannabis. This means you can only buy it from licensed cannabis stores.
We expect more states to join this category in the coming months, potentially including some that banned delta-8 THC.
Delta-8 THC is regulated in Connecticut, so you can only buy it from licensed cannabis retailers. The state passed Bill 1201 on July 1, 2021, which legalized adult-use cannabis and added delta-8 to the definition of THC and marijuana.
Delta-8 is regulated in Michigan in the same way as recreational cannabis. The state passed House Bill 4517 on July 17, 2021, which made it illegal to sell delta-8 and other THC isomer products outside of licensed marijuana retailers.
States Where Delta-8 is In a Legal Gray Area
In these states, it’s not 100% clear whether delta 8 THC is legal, partially illegal, or completely illegal.
Until state authorities release a clear statement, all we can do is use the available information to provide the best prediction.
Delta-8 THC is either illegal or regulated in California. The state passed Bill AB-45 in October 2021, which added delta-8 to the definition of THC and also made it illegal to sell hemp products with more than 0.3% of any kind of THC.
It’s not clear if this means that delta-8 is completely banned or if it will be regulated the same way as adult-use cannabis. Either way, it looks like most online delta 8 vendors will stop shipping to the state.
Delta-8 appears to be legal in Mississippi because hemp-derived products are exempt from the state’s controlled substances definition of tetrahydrocannabinol.
However, many delta 8 brands don’t ship to Mississippi and you’ll get contradicting answers depending on who you ask.
Delta-8 THC is either illegal or regulated the same way as recreational cannabis in Arizona. It’s not clear. For now, it seems like you can buy it from some licensed cannabis dispensaries.
It’s not clear whether delta-8 THC is legal in Kentucky. Although the state includes “tetrahydrocannabinols” on its list of schedule 1 controlled substances, delta-8 products are readily available in the state without any issues with authorities.
There was also an April 19, 2021 letter by the state’s Department of Agriculture saying that “delta-8 THC is a Schedule 1 controlled substance under federal law and Kentucky law.”
Although this letter doesn’t have legal authority, it hasn’t stopped Kentucky police from raiding hemp stores in search of delta-8 products.
States Where Delta 8 is Illegal
The following states have legislation prohibiting delta-8 in one way or another. However, some people report being able to buy delta-8 products in these states, likely due to a lack of enforcement and clarity from the state government.
Delta-8 THC is illegal in Alaska, even though the state allows recreational cannabis. That’s because all forms of THC are illegal. On top of that, hemp-derived products are still illegal in Alaska unless you have authorization from the state’s industrial hemp pilot program.
Delta-8 THC is illegal in Arkansas because tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is a controlled substance in the state.
This news is surprising since Colorado was one of the first states to legalize recreational marijuana in 2012.
Delta-8 is illegal in Delaware. The state’s Controlled Substances Act includes “Any material, compound, combination, mixture, synthetic substitute or preparation which contains any quantity of marijuana or any tetrahydrocannabinols, their salts, isomers or salts of isomers” as a schedule 1 controlled substance.
Delta-8 is illegal in Montana because THC is a controlled substance.
Delta-8 THC is banned in New York. The state revised its regulations in May 2021, making it illegal to make hemp cannabinoid products created through isomerization (such as delta-8 and delta-10 THC). These regulations were confirmed by the New York Cannabis Control Board (CCB) in November 2021.
Delta-8 THC is illegal in North Dakota. The state’s bill 1045, signed in April 2021, changed the definition of THC to include delta-8 and other isomers, and also changed the definition of hemp and hemp-derived products to anything with no more than 0.3% THC (in any form).
Delta-8 THC is illegal in Vermont. The state’s Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets clarified on April 23, 2021, that “…Vermont producers cannot manufacture the delta-8-THC cannabinoid from hemp…In addition, delta-8-THC manufactured from hemp may be a controlled substance under federal and/or State law.”
Delta 8 appears to be illegal in Washington. The state’s Liquor and Cannabis Board stated in September 2021 that marijuana license holders can’t make or sell delta 8 THC products in the state’s regulated market.
But this ruling doesn’t specify if it affects unlicensed online vendors selling and shipping delta 8 all over the country. So it’s possible that they might still be able to ship products to Washington.
What is Delta-8 THC?
Delta-8 is a form of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Most of us are only familiar with delta-9 THC, which is what most people refer to when they say THC.
Delta-8 is an isomer of delta-9 THC, which means it has the same molecular formula as but the atoms are arranged differently. THC actually has four different isomers: delta-7, delta-8, delta-9, and delta-10.
Research suggests that delta-8 is about 66% as potent as delta-9 and has similar effects (1). This means it can get you high and produce other typical effects of THC, such as sedation.
Delta-8 THC also appears to have a lower chance of causing anxiety and other common side effects of delta-9 THC, which is another reason for its popularity.
Why Delta-8 is Controversial
Delta-8 THC is controversial because it offers a “legal high” in states where recreational cannabis is banned. It’s all because of a loophole in the 2018 Farm Bill that legalized hemp across the nation.
The bill limits hemp-derived products to no more than 0.3% of delta-9 THC but has no such limit for delta-8 THC. Cannabis and hemp plants naturally have low delta-8 THC levels, so legislators never bothered to mention it in the bill.
But you can also make large amounts of delta-8 from hemp-derived CBD through a fairly simple chemical process. By the bill’s definition, this delta-8 THC is considered legal.
Delta-8 THC has also generated debate about whether it counts as synthetic. The process used to create delta-8 from CBD is clearly not natural.
- On one hand, you could argue that delta-8 THC is not synthetic because it’s made from CBD, a natural cannabinoid
- On the other hand, you could argue that creating any new cannabinoid from another cannabinoid makes it synthetic
Some also argue that delta-8 THC is illegal because it violates the 1986 Federal Analogue Act, which bans substances that are “substantially similar” to controlled drugs.
Buying Delta-8 THC
Delta 8 products are sold by a growing number of brands across the country. Unfortunately, there are only a handful of trustworthy delta-8 brands because the market is unregulated and has attracted bad actors looking to make a quick buck.
If you’re 100% set on buying delta-8 THC products, make sure to look for a reputable brand. It should provide third-party test results for potency and contaminants from a reputable lab and be transparent about its business practices.
It’s best to choose established CBD companies that have already been operating for several years and have a solid reputation.
The Future of Delta-8 THC
Is delta-8 legal or illegal? It depends.
It’s unlikely that we’ll see a federal law banning delta-8 THC since all signs point towards cannabis decriminalization and legalization. The DEA even confirmed that it considers hemp-derived delta-8 THC legal.
Meanwhile, individual state laws for delta-8 THC are constantly changing. The most likely outcome is that most states will choose to regulate delta-8 THC in a similar way to recreational marijuana.
This means delta-8 products will only be available from licensed businesses and go through proper testing, labeling, and other regulations.
This is the best solution for consumers as it will raise the quality and safety of delta-8 THC products.
Gleb is a freelance writer from Vancouver, Canada specializing in CBD and cannabis. He’s read thousands of studies on CBD and other supplements, helping him translate complex science into plain language. Gleb has tried and reviewed dozens of CBD brands and products, written third-party testing reports, and knows the CBD industry inside and out. When not writing, he likes to kickbox, travel, and tell everyone how awesome intermittent fasting is.