06 September 2023
Foley Hoag LLP
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Maryland’s eligibility criteria to be considered a social
The Maryland Cannabis Administration (MCA) and the Office of
Social Equity (OSE) have released the eligibility criteria to be
considered a social equity applicant for the upcoming Fall 2023
Cannabis License Application Period (ose.maryland.gov). Maryland’s first round
of adult-use licensing will be limited to qualified social equity
applicants and the release of the social equity criteria allows
،ential applicants to s، the process of establi،ng their
The OSE also announced the creation of the Social Equity
Verification Portal for individuals interested in pursuing a
cannabis business license, which will allow prospective applicants
to confirm their social equity status before the license
application round opens later this year. The portal will open on
September 8 and will be open for 60 days, closing on November
NOTE: According to the MCA’s website,
prospective applicants must verify themselves in the portal before
the application period opens.
You must request a link to the Social Equity Verification Portal
from the MCA by completing this form: Cannabis
Business Licensing Interest Form.
Eligible social equity applicants must satisfy one or more of
the following criteria:
- Lived in a Disproportionately Impacted Area for five of the
last 10 years immediately preceding the submission of the
- Attended a public sc،ol in a Disproportionately Impacted Area
for at least five years; or
- For at least two years, attended a four-year ins،ution of
higher education in the State where at least 40% of the individuals
w، attend the ins،ution of higher education are eligible for a
A map of the Disproportionately Impacted Areas in Maryland,
along with a list of qualifying Maryland sc،ols and ins،utions
of higher education, is available on the OSE’s website.
COMING SOON: With the social equity
criteria now released, the next step is for the MCA to release the
license applications and announce the opening and closing dates for
the Fall 2023 Cannabis License Application Period. We expect that
announcement to come as soon as next week.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice s،uld be sought
about your specific cir،stances.
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