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10 Insider Tips for Cannabis Business Applicants

Starting a cannabis business requires lots of preparation and analysis from you, your supplemental applicants and your hired team of experts. During these times, there will be inevitable temporary changes to the typical application process due to building delays However, the Marijuana Regulatory Agency (MRA) has laid out these 10 general tips for you to consider during your application process.

Cannabis Business Application

Tip #1: How to Qualify for the Social Equity Program

To qualify for the social equity program, you must first be a resident in one of the 41 identified disproportionately impacted communities for the last 5 consecutive years.

Residency is verified by a few different documents, including:

  • W-2’s
  • Utility bills
  • Lease/rental agreements
  • Property taxes

Remember: Residency cannot be verified by your place of business, only by your individual residence.

Tip #2: You Need a Medical Marijuana Facility License Before Applying for Certain Adult-Use Licenses

Adult-use grower B, grower C, processor, retailer, or secure transporter license require medical marijuana facility licenses. Michigan residency is required before applying for an adult-use grower A or microbusiness license.

The MRA is temporarily extending the period of prequalification status for applicants under the Medical Marijuana Facilities Licensing Act (MMFLA) or the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act (MRTMA).

Effective now, the prequalification status expiration date for MMFLA and MRTMA applicants are extended for a period of 90 days for the following:

  • All applications currently in prequalification status 
  • All applications currently in an approved extension of prequalification status 
  • All applications granted prequalification status during the next 90 days.

Tip #3: Plant Allowances for Adult-Use Growers

Each adult-use grower license holds different plant allowances, or the amount of plants each license-holder can lawfully grow at one time. They are as follows:

Marijuana Plant Allowances under the MRA

Tip #4: Requirements for Temporary Marijuana Events License

You must hold a Marijuana Event Organizer license before applying for a Temporary Marijuana Events license. Additionally, a temporary marijuana event application must be submitted at least 90 days before the first day of the proposed event.

Tip #5: Fees for Adult-Use Establishments

At the time you submit your Step 1 prequalification application, you must pay a non-refundable application fee of $6,000. Below are the initial licensure fees for the available types of adult-use licenses:

Cannabis Business License Fees in Michigan

Review Emergency Rule 63 here.

Tip #6: Resubmitting an Attestation

If you are currently in the application process and need to correct any attestation, a new Acknowledgment of Attestations is also required when submitting the corrected attestation.

Tip #7: Correct a Notice of Deficiency

If you receive a Notice of Deficiency at any point during the application process, you have 5 calendar days to submit the missing or corrected information to MRA. This 5-day period is due to the strict statutory timeframe that MRA has to process adult-use applications.

Tip #8: You Need a Physical Location Before Step 2 Approval

Whether you are constructing a new building or buying an existing one, your physical location is required to pass inspections from MRA Enforcement and the Bureau of Fire Services, as well as any required local inspections within 60 days of submitting the Step 2 establishment license application.

To ensure your establishment can meet this requirement, please wait to submit your Step 2 establishment license application until you are confident your establishment can pass all required inspections within 60 days.

Tip #9: License Pick-Up Process

Due to the COVID-19 Crisis, on-site pickup of licenses under the MMFLA or the MRTMA are temporarily suspended. All licenses will be sent by certified mail. 

However, a licensee is not required to have the license in-hand before beginning operations. Licenses are effective upon payment of the initial licensure fee.

Tip #10: Decoding Step-2 Application Statuses

There are many different statuses your application will enter once it is submitted to the MRA. These statuses are decoded as follows:

Step 2 Application Status

During these times, we remain as committed as ever to serve you for your cannabis business needs. We are available remotely by phone or by Skype. For more information, please contact our team of experienced cannabis attorneys and support staff by filling out this form, or by calling our office at (248) 541-2600.

Barton Morris
Barton Morris has been providing high-quality legal representation in the area of state and federal criminal defense for more than 20 years.
The Cannabis Legal Group has been providing our clients professional and quality legal assistance in all aspects of representation for years.

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