How To Open a Dispensary in CA

How To Open a Dispensary

How To Open a Dispensary in CA

When planning for opening a collective that is recognized by the state there are a number of provisions that require to be acknowledged as laid out by state law.

Under certain guidelines dispensaries are not permitted to operate as a for profit business, or sole proprietorship, so for this reason they should be set up as non profit collectives or cooperatives. In this way they may legally operate as distribution points of medical marijuana.

In setting up a collective the key aim will be to provide a means for members of the dispensary to share without cost for medicinal purposes. As such it will be required to operate as a business, but not to make a profit and not with a retail model. How this works in practice would normally see a patients and caregivers working together and sharing a crop within the group. This may entail a donation or membership system being put in place, but as mentioned before, a distinctly retail system would be difficult to set up under the provisions of state law.

Usually the first step when considering how to open a dispensary in CA would be to take the advice of a business attorney. This will smooth the way towards opening a successful dispensary, with all the necessary articles and provisions required for cooperatives put into place.

With the required articles and provisions in place the individual patients and caregivers can cultivate as much as is deemed reasonable for medical use. In order to avoid expensive court cases it is important to observe this requirement and ensure that the cultivation does not exceed what might be deemed as excessive for the size of the dispensaries membership. More guidance on this important aspect in the next section.

To avoid or reduce instances where the collective may be questioned regarding the level of crop that is maintained the following may be used as a guide. Bear in mind that such levels are regularly debated in law so you may wish to seek legal advice to be certain of what is or is not acceptable. At any one time, per member patient of the collective, there may be 12 immature plants, or 6 mature plants. Additionally there can be 8 ounces of dried marijuana bud per member. These are the levels as set out in state guidelines SB 420. It is not unusual to have upper limits set on these levels however. For example, regardless of the numbers of members in the collective, some collectives may have a 100 plant limit imposed of their crops.

To continue providing a valuable service to the members of the collective and to allow the members to operate within the recommended guidelines of the collective, it is very important to avoid issues and to remain within the parameters of the previously mentioned limits. This will also be a primary early consideration in how to open a dispensary in CA while remaining within the prescribed operating terms of state law.

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