Michigan Court of Appeals decided Oct 8, 2013

Oakland County Narcotics Enforcement Team Det. Mark Ferguson received consent to search a Pontiac home whom he suspected of growing marijuana and found 71 plants. Because defendant was a patient and a caregiver for five others he argued that he was within the limit in sec 4(a) and (b) and therefore immune. After a hearing the people argued that they have rebutted the presumption because the defendant could not identify the medical illnesses of his patients or answer any questions about them regarding their medical use. The court upheld the trial court’s ruling that he could not qualify for section 4 immunity as the People rebutted the presumption.

The court made a interesting ruling about the Act’s emphasis of a continuing and ongoing relationship that must exist between a doctor and his patient which the act demanded in three places:

  1. “in the course of bona fide physician patient relationship” of sec 4(f)
  2. if a physician notifies the department that the patient no longer suffers from the medical condition the department shall notify the patient that the card is null and void. Sec 6
  3. the standard of care implies follow up visits

Section 8 analysis

  1. 8(a)(1) requires proof of ongoing physician patient relationship a caregiver should be able to provide the names of the patient’s certifying physicians (266)
  1. 8(a)(2) requires caregiver to know how much is prescribed and how long is the patient supposed to use it, knowledge of what amount is reasonably necessary for each patient. the volume limitations in sec do not apply to sec 8
  2. 8(a)(3) marijuana must be used for medical reasons

Caregivers are required to ask their patients how much they have to use and for how long for sec 8 defense.