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What is a Conditional Adult-Use Retail Dispensary (CAURD) License?

CAURD licenses are approved by New York's Cannabis Control Board (CCB) and issued by the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM). CAURD licensees will be the first businesses to sell adult-use cannabis in the state. 

Who is eligible for a CAURD license?

The business-applicant must be majority-owned (at least 51%) by justice involved individuals. In addition, at least 30% of the qualifying business-applicant must be owned by an individual who: (1) is justice involved; (2) has qualifying business experience; (3) has sole control of the business; and (4) has significant presence in New York.

What does it mean to be justice involved?

A justice involved individual is someone who: (1) was convicted of a cannabis-related offense in New York State before March 31, 2021; (2) has a parent, legal guardian, child, spouse, or dependent who was convicted of a cannabis-related offense in New York State before March 31, 2021; or (3) was the dependent of someone who was convicted of a cannabis-related offense in New York State before March 31, 2021. 

What is qualifying business experience?

A justice involved individual, having sole control and at least 30% ownership of business-applicant, must have also owned at least 10% of and controlled a business that had net profit for two (2) of the years the business was in operation. 

What is “control” of a business? 

Having the authority to approve the operating budget, maintain books and financial records, hire and fire higher personnel, and approve management and facility contracts are all examples of having control over a business. Questions regarding the control requirement should be directed to  [email protected]

What qualifies as having a significant presence in New York State? 

The individual with sole control and at least 30% ownership in the business-applicant must also have significant presence in New York, meaning: (1) residency, (2) assets, (3) real property, (4) bank account, or (5) other connection(s) to and in New York. For more information regarding the “significant presence” requirement, please email [email protected]

What documentation do I need to submit with my CAURD license application?

  • Documentation showing you are justice involved (e.g., Certificate of Disposition; Certified Indictment; record of judgment and conviction; record of the plea, verdict, and sentence); 
  • Proof of where the individual who was convicted of the cannabis-related offense lived at the time of the arrest/conviction (e.g., valid NYS driver's license, non-driver ID card, or learner's permit; state or federal tax filing or return; utility bills; credit card statements; leases; mortgage statements); 
  • Proof of ownership and control of a qualifying business (e.g., operating agreements or other corporate documents; tax documents; utility bill; rental agreement; title or deed to property);
  • Documents that identify all the individuals, partners, and/or organizations that will own or control your retail dispensary, including their financial disclosures; 
  • A business plan for the applicant; and 
  • Financial documents related to the applicant. 

Where will my CAURD licensed retail dispensary be located?

Applicants selected for a CAURD license will be assigned a retail dispensary location in one (1) of fourteen (14) geographic regions in New York. In the application, applicant will be requested to indicate regional geographic preferences and have the ability to rank top five (5) preferred regions. Applicant will not be able to choose a specific street address or neighborhood for the dispensary. 

How will CAURD applications be reviewed?

The application will be scored based on specific factors related to the justice involved individual and the qualifying business. 

What if my CAURD license application is not granted? 

If an applicant is not approved for a CAURD license, there will be later opportunities to apply for an adult-use retail dispensary license. 

Can I own an Adult-Use Conditional Cultivator or Processor license AND a CAURD license at the same time? 

No, New York's Cannabis Law has strict restrictions against having an interest in an adult-use cannabis cultivation and retail license at the same time. 

Can I invest in multiple CAURD licenses?

A True Party of Interest (one with financial interest, control, and assumes debt of the business) can have an interest in up to three (3) adult-use cannabis retail dispensaries. 

Does the CAURD license allow for multiple dispensaries?

No. A CAURD license only authorizes the acquisition, possession, sale, and delivery of cannabis from ONE licensed premises. 

For additional information regarding CAURD licensing, please click here. Understanding the intricacies of the CAURD licensing regulations may be difficult, but Leaf Legal, P.C. is fully equipped to assist your legal needs in New York's rapidly expanding licensing and regulatory scheme. Contact the attorneys at Leaf Legal, P.C. to request a consultation.

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