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Making marijuana changes lives immediately in California

If you have ever smoked marijuana, you know that it affects everyone differently. While more is becoming known about this drug, it's still illegal in many states and federally.

As of 2018, marijuana is becoming legal in California, and with that legality comes the change to reduce or eliminate marijuana-related charges on your record. Proposition 64 will give some residents the opportunity to clear their records of past drug crimes, which is helpful for those looking to find work, rent a home or avoid other trouble from their pasts.

When you have a felony conviction, life changes immediately. Your reputation is tarnished, and there are many things you can no longer do. With a felony, you're unable to own guns. Many past marijuana convictions were felonies, taking away the rights of those who want to own guns as well as taking away the reputation of those looking for work or trying to obtain custody of their children. If individuals are in prison because of convictions related to marijuana, the 2018 changes create a possibility of reducing the time it takes to get out. In some cases, it could mean someone has already served enough time and will be released as soon as possible.

With the legalization of marijuana, many crimes became less serious and others are no longer crimes at all. For some, what was once a felony has now become a misdemeanor. Those changes make a major difference. Judges now have no choice but to look at each petition made and then reduce or eliminate the marijuana charges that meet the Proposition 64 requirements.

Source: Yourcentralvalley.com, "California legal pot comes with a chance to adjust criminal records," Patrick Nelson, Dec. 18, 2017

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