Getting your first medical cannabis grow license is an exciting occasion, but having to renew your license is an annoying formality that is easy to forget. While it’s simple to put off your renewal, keeping your license updated can be made quick and easy if you approach it correctly. Renewing a medical cannabis license is a great occasion to increase your plant limit and start growing more cannabis plants. This article will cover the most important steps toward
receiving an ACMPR renewal and a higher plant count.
Common Questions about Renewing ACMPR Licenses
It’s easy to get confused by the paperwork and information required for renewing your license, and Health Canada unfortunately doesn’t make this process as clear as it should be. We’ll walk you through some of the concerns people have when trying to get a renewal and give you the information you need to streamline the process as much as possible.
Required Medical Documents
Different medical professionals have different standards for proof of your condition, and you can discuss the specifics with your doctor. Certain websites and clinics offer no-questions-asked renewal services, so consider doing research if you’d rather avoid the inconvenience of acquiring a referral or physical.
Fortunately, the same form you used when applying for your medical cannabis license in the first place can be used again to receive a renewal. Simply check the “Renewal” box instead of “New Application”. You can also write the word renewal on the outside of the envelope to make sure it gets sorted quickly and correctly after arriving at Health Canada.
Increasing Your Plant Count
One of the main benefits of a medical cannabis license is the ability to grow more than four plants in a single household, and plant limits depend on the individual prescription—the higher your prescription, the more plants you can legally grow. Different doctors offer different maximum prescriptions, so you may want to shop around and look for someone
who can write you the prescription you need. Receiving a higher plant count after renewing your license is as simple as getting a new prescription for more cannabis. Health Canada offers a plant calculator which makes it easy to determine how many plants you’ll be permitted to grow depending on different prescription levels.
Can I Use My Old Prescription?
Unfortunately, current medical cannabis prescriptions are only valid for up to one year, so you’ll need to receive a new prescription in order to renew your license without letting it lapse. Keep this in mind as the end of your original license approaches, and start searching for a new prescription at least a couple months in advance. This will ensure that you have all the time you need to find the right doctor for you. With such a large number of medical cannabis license applications being filed every week, it’s impossible to predict how long your own application will take to be returned. Unexpected delays are no problem if you’ve started the process well in advance and given yourself extra
time to deal with unforeseen circumstances.
Getting a New Doctor
While there’s nothing wrong with continuing to receive prescriptions from the same doctor each year, some patients prefer to look for a new medical professional who is more in tune with their unique health situation and goals. This can be especially helpful if your current doctor doesn’t understand your need for a higher plant count or if he or she has a relatively full schedule. You can receive a medical cannabis license with a prescription from any doctor.
The Renewal Process
Finding a doctor and getting a prescription is the first, and usually quickest, step in the renewal process. After you’ve received a medical cannabis prescription from your doctor, all that’s left is sending in your prescription and forms and waiting for Health Canada to send back a renewed license. Unfortunately, there’s no way to know how long you’ll be left waiting for that license—it could be six days, six weeks, or even six months. Luckily, renewals generally take less time than first-time licenses, and you can expect yours to come back within roughly 3 months.
Changing Grow Locations
When you filled out your original medical cannabis license application, you were asked whether you would be growing inside, outside, or a combination of both. Your limit depends on the location of your plants, and you can select a new option when renewing your license. This is as simple as checking the correct box on your renewal application. Since there’s always a chance of something unexpected going wrong with your application, it’s better to stay on the safe side and not make any changes to your setup until your renewal has been approved. If you’re planning to switch from an indoor to outdoor grow, consider looking for an increased prescription in order to raise your plant limit for outdoor growth.
The ACMPR and the Canadian Cannabis Act
Many users have been confused about the state of the ACMPR medical cannabis program in light of the recent legalization of cannabis nationwide. Fortunately, the former ACMPR program has essentially been absorbed into the new legislation, so the process is the same in everything but name. If you’re familiar with the ACMPR application and renewal process, there won’t be anything surprising about renewing your license. The government has stated that they don’t plan to examine medical cannabis laws for at least a few years, so don’t expect any changes until at
● Give yourself extra time to account for any unforeseen problems that could come up
throughout the renewal process.
● Consider trying to raise your plant count if you’re transitioning to an outdoor grow, or
if your current prescription doesn’t provide enough cannabis for your needs.
● Look for a new doctor if you have any problems with your existing ones, or if their
schedule is full and you’re having trouble making an appointment.
● Try to send your prescription and renewal application at least two months before your
current license is set to expire.
● Do not make any changes to your grow setup until you know they have been
approved by Health Canada and you have received your renewal.
● Continue growing your own plants and learning more about cannabis growth—even if
renewing your license seems difficult or inconvenient, it’s much better than paying
higher prices and waiting for your favorite strains to be in stock at your local
There’s no way around the fact that renewing your ACMPR license is a pain, and the
process will hopefully be further streamlined in the coming years. For now, sticking to these
tips is the best way to ensure that you receive your renewal in time and are prepared to
manage anything that comes up along the way.
If you’d like assistance to make sure you go through the process legally and the right way, please contact us about acquiring a licence and we’ll help you through the process every step of the way.
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