Ohio has waited and watched, learning from the mistakes of other states that raced to legalize medical marijuana. Many who suffered from conditions the product promised to relieve were excited when lawmakers agreed to allow a limited number of dispensaries across the state. If you were among the few granted a license to sell medical marijuana, you already know how carefully Ohio regulates the industry.

With three different agencies overseeing the cultivation, dispensing and doctor certification related to medical marijuana, you would not get very far before having to answer to one or the other regulatory entity. Since dispensing medical marijuana is a highly competitive industry, you would be wise to do all you can to remain compliant and keep your license in good standing.

Heavily regulated industry

While your motivation for opening a dispensary may be to help alleviate the suffering of those for whom conventional medicine is not working, your day-to-day goal is avoiding violations of the rigid codes in place. This means knowing, understanding and asking questions about any regulations related to your business, including those governing your interactions with suppliers and other entities.

Understanding these regulations yourself is only the beginning. Anyone who works, invests or operates in your medical marijuana business must complete the licensing and background investigation requirements the state sets. Critically, it is up to you to be a constant reminder to your employees of the importance of working within the limitations of your license and the consequences of violating the regulations.

Avoid common violations

While you may be new at owning and managing a medical marijuana dispensary, others across the country have paved the way. You can learn from their mistakes to avoid the violations most common in dispensaries, including:

  • Failing to properly inventory your product and accurately account for any discrepancies
  • Failing to carefully track and monitor visitors to your dispensary
  • Failing to carefully log product waste
  • Neglecting to stay current with required state and federal documentation for your finances and inventory
  • Neglecting to include mandatory health and safety warnings to patients purchasing marijuana
  • Failing to maintain a clear and unobstructed view for all surveillance cameras on the premises

You may also find it best to be proactive and report any violations, such as theft or diversion, to the appropriate regulatory agency rather than having them come down on you with consequences that may cost your license and your business. However, before taking this step, you would be wise to seek legal counsel from an attorney who is familiar with laws governing the Ohio medical marijuana industry.