How to get your cannabis license in your state:
- Adult Use:
- Market Overview:
In 2020, Illinois became the 11th state to legalize adult-use cannabis. Within their first month of legal sales in January 2020, Illinois earned nearly $40M in revenue. BDSA predicted that the Illinois market would reach $1.5 billion by 2025, but it hit that number in the 2022 fiscal year — meaning $445 million in tax revenue for the state.
- Requirements & Application Process:
In Illinois, any person involved in the handling of legal cannabis is called an "agent" and must have an Agent Identification Card. The two most common IDs for Vangst workers are the Cultivation Center Agent Identification Card and the Dispensing Organization Agent Identification Card.
Cultivation IDs are issued by the Illinois Department of Agriculture, while dispensary IDs are issued by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.
Applications for agent cards must be submitted by cannabis companies themselves, and not individuals.
- Be 21 years of age
- Complete a Fingerprint Consent Form and pass a background check.
- Agents in Charge or Principal Officers must submit an application for a new agent ID
- New agents must already be employed by the company submitting the application
- Agents must be 21 years of age or older
- Required documentation can be found here and includes a square headshot photo, proof of background check, two proof of residence documents, government-issued proof of identity, sworn attestations, copies of police reports for any prior arrests, and a $100 application fee
- New agents must complete Illinois Responsible Vendor Training within 90 days of employment. Here's a list of state-approved training vendors.
- Late fees are $50
- Background Check Requirements:
“Applicants for an Adult Use Cannabis Dispensing Agent Identification Card must have a fingerprint-based criminal history record information background check.”
- Dispensary workers must complete this Fingerprint Consent Form, while cultivation workers must complete the form found on the last page here.
- Any answers regarding criminal history disclosed on the Attestation Form must match the results of your fingerprint-based criminal history record and background check
- Additional Links:
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How to Work In Cannabis
Requirements by State
Politics, budgets, and public support vary widely by state, which means each state’s requirements to work in the cannabis industry look completely different from one another.* This map and corresponding state information is not updated in real time. For up-to-the-minute information on requirements to work in cannabis, visit the governing body links provided on each state page.