New Jersey Cannabis Expungement & Felonies

New Jersey Cannabis Expungement & Felonies

Discover comprehensive insights into the New Jersey cannabis expungement process through these detailed and informative Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).

How did New Jersey handle expungements for cannabis?

Individuals can petition to expunge past marijuana misdemeanors. After seven years, up to four misdemeanor convictions along with up to two non-violent felonies can be set aside, although certain offenses are excluded.

All felonies? Only non-violent?

Expungement was focused on low-level cannabis offenses, not all non-violent or larger cannabis convictions.

Were there any crimes related to cannabis that disqualified someone from applying as a social equity applicant?

Of an indictable offense under this State’s law, or equivalent offense under Federal law or any other state’s law, that is substantially related to the qualifications, functions, or duties for which the license is required, which includes:

  • N.J.S.A. 2C:35-4.1.b (Booby traps in manufacturing or distribution facilities);
  • N.J.S.A. 2C:35-6 (Employing a juvenile in a drug distribution scheme, or a similar indictable offense involving the use of a minor to dispense or distribute a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog);
  • N.J.S.A. 2C:35-8 (Distribution to persons under age 18);
  • N.J.S.A. 2C:35-11.1 (Counterfeit drugs, medical devices);
  • N.J.S.A. 2C:36-5 (Delivering drug paraphernalia to person under 18 years of age); or
  • Any State, other state, or Federal offense involving fraud, deceit, or embezzlement as a necessary element of the offense; and

Where not more than five years have passed since the date of that conviction, satisfactory completion of probation or parole, or release from incarceration, whichever is later.

Status of Current Social Equity Program:

Social Equity in New Jersey refers to individuals applying for cannabis business licenses who have either been convicted of a marijuana-related offense anywhere in the US or have resided in a disproportionately impacted area of New Jersey for 5 out of the last 10 years, subject to additional income limits​​.

There are different categories of “social equity,” with only one category formally being considered social equity by definition:

  • Diversely Owned Business
    • Minority-owned business
    • Woman-owned business
    • Disabled-veteran-owned business
  • Impact Zone Business
  • Social Equity Business
    • Applicant has lived in an economically disadvantaged area for five of the 10 preceding years. 
    • More than 50% of the ownership team is held by one or more persons who are eligible to be pronounced rehabilitated for the below convictions:
      • At least two marijuana- or hashish-related disorderly persons offenses or
      • At least one marijuana- or hashish-related indictable offense
  • Priority Review
    • Applicants meeting one of the above criteria were reviewed ahead of applicants who did not qualify.

How Can Point Seven Group Help?

The team of cannabis consultants and professionals at Point Seven Group have worked extensively in the U.S. and international cannabis markets and are familiar with the unique challenges of the cannabis industry. Follow us on social media to stay up to date with more cannabis industry updates!

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