Why would I want an attorney to set up my cannabis business?
The success or failure of a cannabis business hinges, in part, on compliance with all applicable laws, rules, and regulations governing the industry. Falling out of compliance can result in hefty fines, losing your commercial licensing, and even state or federal criminal charges.
In addition to compliance, federal taxes are an issue for every cannabis business. Cannabis businesses are subject to Section 280(E) of the Internal Revenue Code. Section 280(E) prevents these businesses from deducting anything other than the cost of goods sold on their federal taxes. Cannabis businesses that are not structured to account for the impact of Section 280(E) can pay federal tax rates of 70-90% of gross revenue.
I have a felony conviction on my record. Can I own a cannabis business in Oklahoma?
Yes, provided you were not convicted of a non-violent felony in the last two (2) years, and have no violent felony convictions in the past five (5) years.
Can someone who is not an Oklahoma resident own a cannabis business in Oklahoma?
Out of state ownership of a cannabis business is limited by Oklahoma law. Cannabis businesses are limited to twenty-five percent (25%) ownership by out of state businesses or residents.
To be considered an Oklahoma resident for the purposes of licensing through the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority (OMMA), a person must prove that they have lived in Oklahoma for the two (2) years prior to submission of the licensing application. Alternatively, a person may submit proof that they have lived in Oklahoma for five (5) of the last twenty-five (25) years in order to qualify as an Oklahoma resident.
How long will it take for my cannabis business to get all its licensing?
The licensing process through the OMMA for a cannabis business takes up to ninety (90) days from the date a licensing application is submitted.
Obtaining a registration from the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics (OBN) takes up to five (5) weeks from the date application is submitted. An application for a registration through OBN requires that a business first be approved for a commercial license through OMMA.
Are there any restrictions on where I can open my cannabis business?
Cannabis dispensaries cannot be located within 1,000 feet of a public or private school. Individual cities can place reasonable zoning restrictions on the location of a cannabis business within the city limits.
How much does it cost to obtain the necessary licensing for a cannabis business?
The exact cost to obtain all necessary licensing for a cannabis business can vary depending upon the individual details of the business. A good approximation of licensing costs is $3,500.00 per license, which breaks down as follows:
- $2,558.30 for OMMA commercial licensing application;
- $312.00 - $512.00 for OBN registration application (amount depends upon business type); and
- Approximately $430.00 to $630.00 in miscellaneous costs (background checks, certificate of good standing, ODAFF licensing, etc.) associated with OMMA and OBN applications (actual costs vary depending on the details of the individual business).
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