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How to Open a Medical Marijuana Dispensary


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Editorial Staffs at Healthtian, A team of Writers.

Opening a medical marijuana dispensary might be a little more complicated than you’d think. For starters, why do you plan to open up this dispensary? If you are doing this because you think you’re going to make a ton of money, then you might want to reconsider your options.


On the other hand, if you’re opening this dispensary because you think you can help people, then by all means you should go forward with this process. According to ThinkCanna.com, getting a marijuana business license is difficult, but it’s certainly not impossible.

They can help future dispensary owners because they know the ins and outs of the legal aspects and qualifications. “Applications are assessed in great detail. Regulators remain concerned about the legalization of medical cannabis and are scrupulously evaluating all aspects of your plan, your team and your ability to create an outstanding case for your business license.”

Whether you get help from experts like those at ThinkCanna.com, or you attempt to go it alone, there are certain steps that you must follow in order to make your dispensary owning dreams a reality.

Is It Legal to Open a Medical Marijuana Dispensary in Your State?

Before doing anything else, you need to find out if it’s even legal to open a medical marijuana dispensary in your state. At this stage of the game, we’ll have to assume that you’ve done your research ahead of time.

In case you haven’t, you can check with the National Conference of State Legislatures to find out if it’s legal to own a medical marijuana dispensary in your state. Just visit their website and scroll to the bottom to find out information on a state-by-state basis.

Incorporate Your Business

As you can imagine, you’ll need to follow specific steps in order to qualify for business incorporation. First of all, you must become established as a non-profit organization first. You can do this by becoming a collective or a cooperative.

Many experienced dispensary owners say that it’s better to become a collective. If you are uncertain about this step, and feel that you can benefit from legal expertise, we highly recommend hiring a lawyer at this stage of the game.

By hiring a lawyer, you will receive the legal advice needed to ensure the entire incorporation process goes smoothly. Otherwise you could end up making costly mistakes that will put your medical marijuana dispensary ownership in jeopardy.

Obtain Financing for Your Business

It’s going to be nearly impossible to start your own dispensary if you do not have financing available to make it possible. On average, dispensary start-up costs will run you anywhere from $250,000-$500,000. So you must finances available if you plan to set this business up correctly from the very beginning.


You can contact a traditional lender to obtain the financing. And if you plan on going this route, you better have a proper business plan in place. Otherwise you will get laughed out of the building.

Even so, having a business plan is no guarantee that you will receive traditional financing. Because of the nature of this business, many lenders are unwilling to loan money to qualified borrowers.

Obtain a Marijuana Business License

At this stage of the game, it’s time to finally obtain a marijuana business license. This part of the process is necessary for tax purposes. More than likely, you’ll have to pay an annual $100 fee to maintain the ability to sell marijuana legally.


For every ounce of marijuana that you sell, you are required to pay a $10 tax stamp. The easiest way to run into problems in this industry is to fail to pay the necessary amount of taxes to the IRS. Don’t scrimp or try to cut corners.

Open Your Medical Marijuana Dispensary

It’s time to finally open up your doors and begin running your dispensary. Thievery is a problem in this business, so make sure you have good security on hand to help you with potential theft problems.

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