Under federal law, possession of any amount of marijuana can result in fines and jail time. A first offense is punishable by a fine of $1,000 and up to a year in jail. A second offense can get you a mandatory 15-day sentence that can be extended up to two years. After that, 90 days to three years of jail time and a $5,000 fine is the punishment you can expect for possessing marijuana. So it's in your best interest to hire a lawyer to represent you in your possession case to help ensure that you receive minimal jail time from the judge. There are a few things you can do to support your defense and ensure that you don't end up back in court for possession later down the line – consider the following methods and techniques:

Go to Regular Meetings

An excellent way to prove to the court that you're serious about staying clean and out of trouble is to start attending recovery meetings of some kind on a regular basis. Don't wait until the last minute to start getting involved. It's a good idea to attend meetings at least once a week during the weeks leading up to your court date, so your lawyer and the court know you're serious about your participation. Narcotics Anonymous is helpful, but it isn't the only type of recovery program you can get involved with. A couple of other groups that may meet your needs include:

  • Secular Organizations for Sobriety – uses a science-based self empowerment system to achieve and maintain abstinence.

  • SMART Recovery – incorporates cognitive behavioral therapy and self-directed skill building techniques to help cope with urges and optimize chances of long-term sobriety success.

You can also find a variety of online group meetings to attend, some of which are offered by the resources listed here. It's important to have your meeting facilitators document your participation by signing off on the dates and times that you attend meetings. You can ask your lawyer for a form to have your facilitator fill out. If you choose to attend online meetings just scan the form, upload it to your computer, and email it to your facilitators.

Volunteer Within Your Community

Volunteering can help you stay grounded, learn the importance of responsibility, develop new friendships in the community, and make you feel good about how you're spending your free time. You can also expect to learn about time management and new ways to handle your emotions which are both critical skills you can use to stay sober and away from marijuana. And your volunteer sessions can lead to an expanded support system as well as the opportunity to create relationships with positive role models within your community.

By volunteering at a community center, a rehabilitation facility, a church, a homeless shelter, or even a school, you will give your lawyer and the court some confidence in knowing that you want to improve your life and give back to your community, which are both attributes that will minimize the chance that they'll see you back in court for another marijuana possession charge in the future. Choose a volunteer opportunity that you think you'll enjoy long term so the process feels more like a pleasure than a chore. And like with any meetings you attend, it's crucial to have your volunteer supervisors document the dates, times, and tasks associated with each volunteer session you attend.

By taking the steps outlined here, you should be able to prove to the court that you're serious about making changes in your life that will keep you out of trouble in the future. And you'll help make your lawyer's job easier which may save you some money on legal fees when all is said and done. For more information, contact a marijuana defense attorney like Russ Jones Attorney At Law.