How to Work In Cannabis

Requirements by State

Map of the United States

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.

17States & DistrictsAdult use cannabis is legal
21States & DistrictsMedical cannabis is legal

How to get your cannabis license in:

Shape of Ohio


Adult Use:
Market Overview:

Ohio legalized the medical cannabis market in 2016 and has since been operating under strict medical regulations. The state projects that the medical program will generate nearly $500M in the upcoming year.

Requirements & Application Process:

Who qualifies as an Associated Key Employee (AKE)?:

“An owner or prospective owner, officer or board member or prospective board member of the entity seeking a dispensary license.”

Who qualifies as a Key Employee (KE)?:

“An administrator or other person responsible for the daily operation of a licensed dispensary.”

Who qualifies as a Support Employee (SE)?:

“An employee who works within a dispensary but does not have authority to make operational decisions.” Ohio Medical Marijuana Control Program, Dispensary Employee Licensing FAQ


  • 21 years of age or older
  • Submission of the dispensary license application
  • A 2” x 2” head and shoulder photograph captured within the previous six months
  • Name and license number of the dispensary employing the applicant
  • Name, license number, and signature of the designated representative for the dispensary employing the applicant (only applicable for Support Employee license)
  • Copy of government issued ID
  • Applicant’s full residential address
  • A sworn, notarized statement that the applicant has not been convicted of a disqualifying offense in any jurisdiction
  • Applicant’s social security number
  • Required fee
Background Check Requirements:

Prospective dispensary employees “must submit fingerprint impressions to the bureau of criminal identification and investigation (BCI&I) for a criminal records check.”

Additionally, “the criminal records check performed by BCI&I shall consist of both a BCI&I criminal records check and a federal bureau of investigation (FBI) criminal records check. BCI&I shall send the results of the BCI&I and FBI criminal records checks directly to the state board of pharmacy.” Ohio Laws & Administrative Rules, Licensing of Medical Marijuana Dispensary Support Employees

Additional Links:
Additional Job & Salary Information:

2021 Salary Guide

State Regulations Forum: Get your state regulations questions answered in our community forum.

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