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Utah Weed Legality: Is Delta 9 THC, Delta 8 THC, and THCA Legal?

John Carter

Written by: John Carter

Updated on May 30, 2024

Utah Weed Legality

Is Delta 9 Legal in Utah?

In Utah, Delta 9 THC derived from hemp is legal, provided that the THC content does not exceed 0.3% by weight. This regulation aligns with the federal law established by the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized hemp and all hemp-derived cannabinoids, including Delta 9 THC, as long as they meet this THC threshold. Additionally, the requirement for a hemp extract registration card in Utah was repealed as of January 1, 2019, simplifying access to hemp-derived products.

However, it is important to note that Delta 9 THC derived from marijuana remains illegal for recreational use in Utah and is only legal for medicinal purposes. Utah has stringent laws regarding marijuana-derived substances, with severe penalties for their illegal sale, possession, and cultivation.

Can You Buy Delta 9 in Utah?

Yes, you can buy Delta 9 products online and in stores in Utah, but only if they are derived from hemp and contain no more than 0.3% THC by weight. These products must comply with federal regulations. Despite the strict laws against marijuana-derived substances, the state allows the sale of hemp-derived Delta 9 THC products, aligning with federal law.

It’s important for consumers to ensure that any Delta 9 THC products they purchase in Utah are explicitly labeled as hemp-derived and confirm to the legal THC limit to avoid legal issues.

Does this mean that residents of Utah can buy Delta 9 products online? Yes, they indeed can. The rules governing hemp-derived products in Utah are summarized in the following table.




58-37-4.3. Exemption for use or possession of hemp extract.

As used in this section, “hemp extract” means an extract from a cannabis plant, or a 114 mixture or preparation containing cannabis plant material, that:

(a) is composed of less than 0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol by weight;

(b) is composed of at least [15%] 5% cannabidiol by weight; and

(c) contains no other psychoactive substance.

(Full Bill)


Hemp extract registration card — Application — Fees — Database.

The department shall issue a hemp extract registration card to an individual who:

(a) is at least 18 years of age;

(b) is a Utah resident;

(c) provides the department with a statement signed by a neurologist that: indicates that the individual:

(A) suffers from intractable epilepsy; and

(B) may benefit from treatment with hemp extract; and is consistent with a record from the neurologist, concerning the individual, contained in the database described in Subsection (8);

(d) pays the department a fee in an amount established by the department under Subsection (5); and

(e) submits an application to the department, on a form created by the department, that contains:

(i) the individual’s name and address;

(ii) a copy of the individual’s valid photo identification; and

(iii) any other information the department considers necessary to implement this chapter

(Full Bill)


Title 26, Chapter 56, Hemp Extract Registration Act, is repealed January 1, 2019.

(Full Bill)

Is Delta 8 Legal in Utah?

Delta 8 THC is illegal in Utah. The state’s Controlled Substances Act classifies Delta 8 THC as a Schedule 1 controlled substance, aligning it with Delta 9 THC and marijuana, regardless of whether it is derived from hemp or marijuana. Under Utah law, there are no exemptions for hemp-derived Delta 8 THC outside of the medical marijuana program, which requires a card issued by a physician.

The only legal exceptions in Utah relate to hemp-derived Delta 9 THC, which must contain no more than 0.3% Delta 9 THC by dry weight to align with federal and state laws concerning hemp and hemp-derived products. This strict regulation underscores Utah’s conservative stance on cannabis-related products, distinguishing it from federal perspectives where Delta 8 THC, while not explicitly recognized or regulated by the 2018 Hemp Farming Act, is not federally illegal due to its derivation from hemp.

Despite its availability and the sale in certain venues, the legality of Delta 8 THC in Utah remains clear: it is illegal without a medical marijuana card, and there are significant restrictions and potential penalties for possession, sale, or use outside of the state’s medical program.

Is THCA Legal in Utah?

In Utah, THCA (tetrahydrocannabinolic acid) exists in a legal gray area, primarily because it is a non-psychoactive precursor to THC, which is psychoactive and regulated under Utah’s cannabis laws. THCA itself is not specifically listed under Utah’s Controlled Substances Act, but its legal status is complicated by its potential to convert into THC when heated (a process known as decarboxylation).

The key legal consideration for THCA in Utah is whether it is derived from hemp or marijuana:

  • Hemp-derived THCA: It is considered legal in Utah if it comes from hemp plants with a THC concentration of below 0.3% on a dry weight basis, aligning with federal standards. This means products containing THCA must also comply with these THC concentration limits to be considered legal.
  • Marijuana-derived THCA: Since recreational marijuana is illegal in Utah, any THCA derived from marijuana falls under the same restrictions and is illegal unless obtained through Utah’s medical cannabis program by registered patients with qualifying conditions.

Therefore, the legality of THCA-rich products may hinge on their source (hemp vs. marijuana) and their potential to convert into THC. For consumers, this means that purchasing and using THCA products legally requires strict adherence to these content and source guidelines. Retailers and manufacturers must ensure their products are compliant with state regulations regarding THC content, accurately labeled, and derived from legal sources to avoid legal repercussions.

What are the Difference between Delta 9 THC, Delta 8 THC, and THCA?

What is Delta 9 THC?

Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, commonly known as Delta 9 THC, is the primary psychoactive compound found in cannabis plants. It is famous for producing the “high” associated with marijuana use. Delta 9 THC works by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system, engaging cannabinoid receptors which are involved in a variety of physiological processes including pain sensation, mood, and memory.

Apart from its recreational use, Delta 9 THC is also noted for its medical benefits. It has been used to manage pain, reduce inflammation, and alleviate nausea in medical contexts. However, the use of Delta 9 THC is not without side effects; it can lead to feelings of anxiety, paranoia, and dependency in some users. The compound’s complex effects make it a significant focus for both medical research and regulatory discussions.

What is Delta 8 THC?

Delta-8 THC is another cannabinoid that naturally occurs in cannabis, albeit in much lower concentrations than Delta 9 THC. It shares a similar chemical structure with Delta 9 THC but features a few critical differences that affect how it interacts with the body. Delta-8 THC tends to produce milder psychoactive effects, which some users prefer for avoiding the more intense highs associated with Delta 9 THC.

Legally, Delta-8 THC occupies a unique space. In many regions, it is more accessible due to its classification under federal law, which allows its use if derived from hemp. Despite its legality and reported benefits like appetite stimulation and nausea reduction, Delta-8 THC’s safety profile and long-term effects are still under investigation, underscoring the need for cautious engagement with this cannabinoid.

What is THCA?

Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, or THCA, is the non-psychoactive precursor to Delta 9 THC found in raw and live cannabis. Before drying or heating, cannabis contains THCA, which converts to psychoactive THC through a process known as decarboxylation. While THCA does not produce psychoactive effects on its own, it plays a crucial role in the biosynthesis of THC.

In the medical cannabis market, THCA is valued for potential therapeutic benefits such as anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties. It is available in various forms, including raw cannabis leaves for juicing and purified extracts. Research into THCA’s efficacy and safety is ongoing, contributing to an expanding understanding of cannabis’s medical applications. Although not psychoactive, the regulatory status of THCA can be complex, depending on its potential conversion to THC, making its legal landscape as intriguing as its pharmacological profile.

Difference Between Delta 9 THC, Delta 8 THC, and THCA

Delta 9 THC, Delta 8 THC, and THCA each represent distinct cannabinoids derived from the cannabis plant. They differ significantly not only in their psychoactive effects but also in how they are regulated, particularly in Utah. Delta 9 THC is known for its potent psychoactive effects and is strictly regulated. Delta 8 THC offers a lighter psychoactive experience and has been treated differently under law due to its derivation from hemp. THCA is a non-psychoactive precursor to THC that changes its legal status depending on its potential to convert into THC after decarboxylation.

Characteristic Delta 9 THC Delta 8 THC THCA
Psychoactive Effects Highly psychoactive, responsible for the “high” Psychoactive but less potent than Delta 9 THC Non-psychoactive unless heated (decarboxylated)
Legal Status in Utah Legal for medical use with a prescription; illegal for recreational use Illegal in all forms, aligning with Delta 9 THC under state law Legal if derived from hemp and contains less than 0.3% THC; illegal if derived from marijuana or capable of converting to THC
Source Predominantly from marijuana Hemp (if compliant with federal law on THC content) or synthetic methods Found in raw cannabis, becomes psychoactive THC when heated
Medical Uses Used for chronic pain, nausea, and as an appetite stimulant Used for similar, albeit milder, effects; research is less robust Potential anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective benefits, though less studied
Common Forms Oils, edibles, capsules, and smokable products Oils, edibles, and vapes, typically marketed as a milder alternative to Delta 9 THC Raw cannabis products, dietary supplements
Regulatory Considerations Strictly controlled, with possession outside medical use severely penalized Also strictly controlled due to its psychoactive nature and potential conversion to Delta 9 THC Not controlled if it remains non-psychoactive and within hemp THC limits

Legal Disclaimer

The content provided on this website is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to serve as legal advice or as a definitive statement of the law. While we strive to maintain accurate and up-to-date information, the legal status of the topics discussed can vary by state and may change over time. Consequently, the information provided here may not reflect the most current legal developments. We do not encourage or discourage the purchase of any products based on the information presented. Before making any decisions related to legal matters, we strongly advise consulting with a qualified attorney in your jurisdiction to obtain advice tailored to your specific circumstances.

John Carter
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