How to Get a License to Sell Medical Marijuana

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How to Get a License to Sell Medical Marijuana

Every business that is established needs a business license and an operating license so that they may run their businesses legally. This is needed in order to regulate and accomplish all the requirements for taxes, safety, and all other government mandates.

However, there is a huge licensing requirement and regulations that need to be followed in both individual sellers and dispensaries. The licensing of cannabis dispensaries and business are very hard to get due to the strict compliance requirements. This may depend on various states that medical marijuana is legal. This article will provide ideas on how to get a license to sell medical marijuana.

Guide on How to Get a License to Sell Medical Marijuana

In order to get an operating license and a business license, there are specific requirements that need to be acquired and provided to the agencies that process licensing. Here are the basic requirements that you need to complete and the process you will undergo how to get a license.

Accomplishing Legal Requirements

  • Business formation: The formulation and establishment of the business and forming it into an LLC with your current state is imperative; this will allow you to safeguard your assets and properties from any risk of debts.
  • Tax ID number: This is one of the vital information that you need as an individual and a company, this will serve as your identification for any tax-related activities and issues that are being tracked by the IRS.
  • General Business License: This is the type of license that is being renewed every year; it serves as your license to operate as a business. This will not give you the authority to run a cannabis business; there is a separate license for that. 
  • DBA Filing: DBA means “Doing Business As”, filing this will allow you to operate your business under the name that you have stated in your incorporation documents. 
  • Sales Tax Permit: This is a permit needed if you need to collect taxes from the states and local. This permit is specifically for retailers.

Accomplishing Business License Requirements for Marijuana/Cannabis

As mentioned in the section above, the licensing for cannabis businesses are very brutal and sometimes impossible to gain by different individuals due to the strict policies. The cannabis license to sell has a different process from a normal business license. And most of all, licenses to sell marijuana are limited to certain states. Meaning, if no slot is free, you cannot open your business. Therefore, before you spend money on planning and organizing, be sure to obtain a cannabis license or a slot first.

There are certain restrictions that will ban you from getting a cannabis license; one of these is a rap sheet or any previous convictions. People who have records of crimes are not permitted to get a license and to operate a business. This restriction is applied to the owners and employees. You must have a clean slate to own a business.

Knowing the Licensing Departments

A few states require business owners and individuals to submit all the necessary paperwork to the SOS or the secretary of state. But in most cases, there are agencies that were established only intended for marijuana business licenses.

In the majority of the states, you can submit and process your license to the following agencies.

  • Bureau of Cannabis Control
  • CalCannabis Cultivation Licensing
  • Manufactured Cannabis Safety Branch

The Difference in Licensing Requirements per Business and Products

Opening a cannabis business undergoes a lot of regulation and also licensing. Also, the category of the business is a great factor that is being considered by the licensing agencies. This part will discuss the licensing differences between business categories.

  • Cultivation: Cannabis cultivation undergoes a lot of licensing procedures in order for the cultivation business to operate under the canopy of the law that each state requires. For a cultivation business, you need to be a certified cannabis grower and a huge amount of capital. Without the two, you will not be granted a license.
  • Retail: As a retailer, the state requires a secured facility to conduct a business and the amount of stock that the state requires in order for you to be declared and certified as a cannabis product retailer. Some states require $200,000 to $300,000 of liquid assets that can instantly be converted upon liquidation.
  • Edibles: Producing cannabis edibles needs a special requirement, such as a sanitary permit. Also, the state requires a manufacturing area where you will cook all of your cannabis edibles. 

Employee Licensing

As mentioned in previous statements, the licensing does not end for the business owner alone; it must also be established for the employees. If you are planning to apply for a job in the cannabis industry, you must remember that you should not have any criminal records in order to obtain a permit and a license to be a cannabis dispensary agent. This can be applied by visiting the cannabis licensing agency websites, or you can visit the facility in your respective state. 

Each employee must meet the set requirements, which vary from state to state. Also, the employees must undergo seminars that are held by the cannabis licensing agencies in order to get the license.

Cannabis Licensing Regulations

Building up your cannabis business is already a challenging activity. But in order to ease up the stress and tension, it is always better to know the regulations and processes that your cannabis business will undergo. Not only will it be a huge help to relieve the stress, but this will also provide you all the information that you need to know. This will enable you to prepare your business properly and will also remind you to follow all the legal requirements that your state is implementing. 

Knowing the rules will give you the strength to implement them and avoiding any altercations.


This article only provides how to get a license to sell marijuana; however, the rules and processes were not indicated in a specific manner due to every states’ different processes, forms, and organizational setting. The best way to be sure is by visiting your cannabis licensing agencies’ webpage and also visiting their facilities.

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