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Litigation Blog.
The seasoned lawyers and litigators at The Rubinstein Law Firm are here to share their insights with you.

How is Detroit licensing marijuana businesses?

Recreational marijuana is fairly new in Michigan. That means the associated businesses with the industry are still getting established and working through the process to become able to open and legally sell products.

One part of starting this type of business is securing a license from the city. The state’s biggest market, Detroit, didn’t begin licensing businesses until September 1, 2022.

Phase one

The city is calling the licensing period from September 1 to October 1 phase one. During this time, the city will process 60 licenses out of the total 160 available through all three phases. The licenses will go to 40 retailers, 10 microbusinesses and 10 consumption locations. Half of all the licenses will be for those applying under social equity, broken down to half of the total for each category.

Social equity

Social equity is for those who are part of communities that have suffered under old marijuana criminalization laws. Applicants must also be residents of the city and meet all other requirements for getting a license. Businesses must have 51% ownership by someone qualifying for social equity to get the benefits.

Moving forward, the city will have two additional phases, which will both offer 50 licenses. Getting to the point where the city is finally offering licenses was a long process. Legal approval came in 2020, but there were lawsuits and even voter initiatives that sought to keep marijuana banned in the city. Despite the setbacks, the process is fully underway. Those wishing to open a marijuana business can begin seeking a license so they can get their business up and running within the city.