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California recently celebrated one full year of recreational marijuana sales. Since the adult-use of marijuana became legalized in 2018, the cannabis industry has taken off in California. Over 10,000 cannabis licenses have been issued in the state, making it one of the biggest markets for cannabis, with dispensaries being the face of the industry.

While the cannabis industry is exploding, getting started can be an arduous process requiring local approval, state licensing, and a knowledge of the cannabis legal system.

A retailer must have a licensed premises from which to sell cannabis products to consumers and conduct operations. One of the biggest challenges when opening a marijuana dispensary can be finding the right real estate property in a competitive market limited by city and county regulations.

Currently, cities and counties regulate land permits so retailers must obtain local and state approval. Land permit requirements can vary from city to city with some cities and counties not allowing any commercial cannabis businesses in their jurisdiction. This presents a shortage of available land. WeCann provides real estate consulting to facilitate this complex process for you.

The next step after finding a retail property is applying for a state license. The Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC) is tasked with regulating commercial cannabis licenses including retailers and is currently accepting applications.

There are two license application types:
Adult-Use (A-License): Licensed to sell cannabis products to adults who are 21 years of age or older.
Medicinal (M-License): Licensed to sell cannabis products to adults with a physician’s recommendation.


Retailers are divided into two categories:

Storefront Retailer (Type 10): Must have a licensed premises from which to sell cannabis products to consumers.
Non-Storefront Retailer (Type 9): Must also have a licensed premises but is not open to the public. Delivers cannabis products to consumers.

Applicants must be prepared to provide business organizational structure, business contact information, and Social Security Number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number. The application must have various forms attached including these:
• Evidence of right to occupy and use premises and compliance with local jurisdiction.
• A premises diagram form outlining the detailed use of the commercial property.
• All documents filed with the Secretary of State.
• Compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act.
• Surety bond payable to the Sate of California.
• Transportation and inventory procedures.

Having these documents prepared correctly and efficiently can save you time and highly increase the chances of having your application approved. WeCann offers a full scope of services tailored to each of our clients’ needs. Schedule a consultation with our experts to help you through the cannabis licensing process.

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