Starting a Marijuana Business: Do You Really Need a Lawyer?

Marijuana has been legalized for recreational use in several states, and this has created a multibillion-dollar market in the US in a short amount of time. It’s no surprise that California has passed legislation to legalize recreational marijuana and capitalize on the new cash crop. The good news is that it’s not too early to get in on the ground level and make a lot of money as a cannabis tycoon.

Even though marijuana is legal in several states, it’s still illegal at the federal level. If that sounds confusing—well, that’s because it is. You can be in total compliance with your local and state laws and still find yourself in a legal conundrum. You also have to deal with issues like finding a location and a bank. It looks like you may need a lawyer.

You’ll need a lawyer to get your business licensed

One thing that you have to keep in mind is that marijuana is still taboo in the hearts and minds of many. Some people even hold on to the old stigma that it’s an illicit, ambition-killing substance. You won’t be able to do anything to change the minds of those people, but you can protect your business from them.

As an entrepreneur, you have to go through a process to get your establishment ready to serve the public. You have to register your business with the state, find a location, get licensed, get suppliers, put security in place and make hires. And you thought owning a dispensary would be easy.

Out of all of the things on your initial to-do list, registering, licensing, and planting your business in the right spot are your top priorities. Licensing is the area where you will need the assistance of a legal advisor. You have a lot more loopholes to jump through when you’re dealing with vices like marijuana, alcohol, and tobacco.

Your state wants to make sure that you’re properly informed of their expectations of you, as well as be sure that you meet them. Before you make any significant moves to get your business going, find a marijuana lawyer in Los Angeles. Springing for a lawyer to guide you through the murky legal waters may cost you now, but that pales in comparison to what a legal mishap down the road could tax you.

You’ll need help finding a bank

One of the hardest things about owning a cannabis business is finding a bank, and that’s an enormous deal. It wouldn’t be wise to run an all-cash business that has the potential to generate a lot of revenue the way pot does. Security is already a risk for any business, and being an all-cash business amplifies that danger exponentially.

The good thing about an experienced marijuana lawyer is that they already know which banks do and don’t conduct business with marijuana dispensaries. You have to look at it from the perspective of the banks. With many banks being national institutions and federally regulated, they can’t involve themselves in an industry that’s illegal at the federal level. Local banks are much more likely to handle your money for you, but you’ll still need a lawyer to point you in the right direction and establish contact with the necessary financial institutions.

You’ll need help toeing the line

Even once you have your business up and running, staying in your lane will be a tricky task. You will have to be able to tiptoe to dance around some of the tripwires lying in wait for a naive marijuana entrepreneur. For instance, did you know that if you sell marijuana in your store, then you can’t sell any substances that don’t have THC in them? You’ll have to find CBD isolate for sale with THC in it if you want to supply the increasing CBD market in your canna-business. A simple infraction like having pure CBD could be enough to land your dispensary in real jeopardy.

No matter what kind of business endeavor you undertake, it’s wise to hire an attorney to help you to stay within the confines of the law. You need legal advice tenfold when you’re entering an industry that’s illegal at the federal level.