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Applying for a Commercial Medical Marijuana License
Medical marijuana business owners provide a service by offering alternative methods of medicating and treating pain/illness. As an entrepreneur, you should not be penalized for helping others. As attitudes towards the usage of medical marijuana change, it is vital that you keep up with the changing tides, and comply with newer laws, in order to opt into the protections that medical marijuana dispensaries are increasingly being afforded. One way to do so is by applying for a Michigan commercial medical marijuana license. If you are a medical marijuana business owner, speak with a capable and experienced medical marijuana lawyer who can fight to ensure that your rights are protected.Medical Marijuana Legislation in Michigan
Commercial medical marijuana was ushered into Michigan in late 2016 through the passing and signing of House Bills 4209, 4210, and 4287. These bills eventually became three new acts, and each act is itself a series of individually numbered statutes or laws.
These statutes are set forth in what are now the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act, the Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act, and the Marijuana Tracking Act. Collectively, these acts allow the licensing of:
- Marijuana cultivation
- Marijuana processing
- Provisioning centers, also known as dispensaries
- Marijuana safety compliance and testing facilities
- Marijuana transportation
In addition to these State granted licenses, medical marijuana entrepreneurs need to work with their local governments to procure the local licenses and permits required to establish a medical marijuana business. Applying for a Michigan commercial medical marijuana license is necessary because the municipality in which a person wants to operate must pass an ordinance which authorizes the type of facility they wish to open. The municipality must receive notice from the business owner that they have applied for any one of the five licenses. The municipality must also approve the business owner's request to have their license transferred, sold or purchased.What is Allowed Under the New Laws and Licensing?
Although House Bill 4209 did alter the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act, if an individual is a medical marijuana patient or caregiver, little has changed. However, for caregivers and other people who want to commercially grow and provide medical marijuana related products, the new licensing laws establish protection and regulations that never existed. These laws and protections govern the proper growth, transportation, testing and sale of medical marijuana. In the past, there was a great deal of uncertainty relative to all of these categories. Thus, if someone possessed, transported, or sold medical marijuana it was relatively easy to violate the law, even when actively attempting not to.
People who engaged in possessing, transporting, or selling medical marijuana activities publicly, such as may be the case when opening and running a marijuana dispensary, were often unfairly subjected to an arrest and prosecution, or at the very least the shutting down of the facility. This was all happening under the "old" law because the MMMA was not clear about what was and was not allowed in terms of marijuana dispensation. The MMMA refers and primarily addresses marijuana consumption by medical patients. It does very little to clarify how the marijuana can be distributed. In other words, it required but did not allow a variety of business relationships.Differences in Implementation
Despite the lack of legislation legitimizing the growth and sale of medical marijuana, in some areas of Michigan, the police would not bother an individual if they wanted to grow or sell medical marijuana to appropriate patients. But, in other counties, the police would shut down these facilities, and a person could face serious felony criminal charges. However, the Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act and the Marijuana Tracking Act now provide a framework for regulations for those who want to legally and commercially transport, cultivate, test process, or sell medical marijuana.
Although these activities were required by the MMMA, they were not specifically allowed. Contrary to the old paradigm, these new laws mean that so long as they follow the regulations set forth within these new laws, they cannot be arrested for their marijuana business. That is why applying for a Michigan commercial medical marijuana license is vital for medical marijuana business owners that want to make sure that their rights are protected, and that their business is above board.Contacting an Attorney
In order to protect your rights as a business owner, you should begin the process of applying for a Michigan commercial medical marijuana license. By doing so, you are legitimizing your business and protecting your future. Another step you can take to ensure that you are being proactive about the future of your business is seeking the guidance of a skilled medical marijuana lawyer. If you have been charged with a medical marijuana offense, or you wish to discuss the process of applying for a commercial license, get in touch with a Michigan medical marijuana lawyer today.