The Hemp farming act was passed into law on December 20th of 2018 it is a law that removed hemp, defined as the industrial usage of cannabis with less than 0.3% THC, from a Schedule 1 drug to an agricultural commodity.
With that in mind we can attempt to explain how THC and CBD differ in legality in the United States.
The Legal Status of THC and Cannabis in the U.S.
Cannabis and THC are both specifically listed in the U.S. Controlled Substances Act. Both use and ownership are prohibited under federal law, while THC and marijuana are illegal on the federal level, there are many states that have passed resolutions making use legal on a state level. Forty-Seven U.S. States and D.C, have passed their own cannabis policies permitting the use of medical cannabis with high levels of THC, provided it is recommended by a licensed physician. Eleven of those states and Washington D.C. have gone a step further and legalized the recreational use of marijuana and THC.
The Legal Status of CBD and Hemp in the U.S.
CBD is legally available in the United States, but it must be derived from high-CBD, low-THC hemp. CBD itself is not listed under the Controlled Substances Act, so it is legal at the federal level as long as it is not extracted from marijuana with high THC levels.
If derived from marijuana, CBD is illegal unless obtained through a state-regulated medical marijuana program or in a state that permits recreational marijuana use. CBD products derived from hemp are completely legal to buy and sell in the U.S.