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Is CBD Oil Legal in All US States?

CBD can produce impressive health benefits, but its legal status can be confusing depending on where you live. To help you wrap your head around whether you’re even allowed to buy CBD, we’ve outlined CBD’s legal status across the United States. 

CBD and its complex legal history 

CBD has not always been as popular and accepted as it is today. Medicinal cannabis wasn’t legalized until 1996, and that was just in California! 


As its legal status has spread and more research has been conducted on its effects, CBD has developed an impressive therapeutic reputation. Studies tell us that CBD may be able to help improve:


  • Sleep quality (1)
  • Anxiety and depression (2)
  • Skin health (3)
  • Seizure frequency (4)
  • Inflammation (5)


CBD started to become a more mainstream product with the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized hemp-derived CBD at the federal level (6). 

So is CBD legal in the US?

While CBD is legal at the federal level thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, it falls into a bit of a gray area in some states. The Farm Bill made all hemp-derived CBD products legal, provided that they contain less than 0.3% THC. However, CBD products are still considered controlled substances in some states. 


In these states, CBD is conditionally legal, typically requiring a medicinal license to use it. Rules around the control and legality of CBD in these states change frequently with state elections and a growing acceptance of cannabis and cannabinoid use. Because of this, it’s important to keep up-to-date with your state’s laws before purchasing CBD products. 

The difference between CBD and THC legality 

While both CBD and THC are cannabinoid compounds, they can have quite different legal statuses depending on where you live. This is because THC can induce a high, while CBD cannot, so laws around THC consumption and purchase tend to be more tightly regulated. 


Hemp-derived CBD is often more readily available legally (especially at the federal level) due to the fact that hemp contains little to no THC content. This helps to better ensure that CBD products will not contain traces of the intoxicating compound. 

Delta-8 THC

As with most things cannabis related, regulation can be confusing. Which brings us to delta-8 THC. The type of THC that is most well known is called delta-9 THC. However, the lesser-known compound called delta-8 THC falls into an interesting legal area. 


The 2018 Farm bill legalized the use of hemp-derived CBD and restricted the use of THC, but only delta-9. This means that delta-8 THC falls into a legal loophole and is legal at the federal level—provided it is sourced from hemp and does not contain more than 0.3% delta-9 THC. 


So what exactly is delta-8 THC? Delta-8 THC is, as you might expect, very similar to delta-9 THC. The delta-8 version can produce a high, although the effects are milder than those of delta-9 THC. 

Federal vs state laws 

As we know, CBD is legal at the federal level (provided that it meets regulatory standards), but state laws can differ. So what does this difference mean for CBD consumers? 


Thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, you are safe from federal charges when consuming or purchasing hemp-derived CBD with a THC percentage of less than 0.3%. 


However, you could still face state charges if you purchase CBD in a state where it is prohibited by law. 

Will CBD show up on a drug test?

If you live in a state where cannabis and/or CBD is a controlled substance, you may be concerned about drug testing. There are two types of drug tests used on urine to test for cannabis:


  • Immunoassay test: Tells you whether the breakdown product of THC is present (7).
  • Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) test: Tells you the type and amount of all compounds present (8).


If you have received an immunoassay test then you will test negative, provided you have only consumed CBD (and not THC). The more complex GC-MS test can detect the presence of CBD if required. 


If your work, sports governing body, or other institution requires drug testing it’s best to investigate their list of banned substances before consuming CBD. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

Tips for choosing quality CBD 

If you live in one of the many states where CBD is legal, you don’t want to waste your hard-earned money on a bad product. Here are some things to look out for to ensure that you get top-quality CBD:

Production methods 

The way CBD products like CBD oil are made can have a big impact on their quality. CBD that is made through alcohol extraction is the gold standard. 


Reviews are a great way to learn if a product is high quality and if it’s a good fit for your needs. Reputable sellers should have product reviews available on their website. 

Company transparency 

Does the CBD company that you’re looking at share where they sourced their CBD? Are they open about their production methods? Do they engage in third party testing?

The bottom line 

When it comes to cannabis, legality can be a complicated issue for all of its compounds, and CBD is no exception. While hemp-derived CBD (with less than 0.3% THC) is legal at the federal level, not all states have followed the same standard. Check your local state laws around CBD consumption and purchase to ensure that you can legally use CBD. 


**Standard Disclaimer: CBD is not FDA-approved. We make no such claims that using our products will guarantee relief. Moreover, research regarding CBD is still ongoing and in the early stages.**