In the Weeds

In the highly regulated cannabis industry, success is reserved for those who take a thoughtful and strategic approach to entering this market. In the Weeds aims to help keep today’s cannabis entrepreneur well informed. We track developments in marijuana law and business, including regulatory framework in states where cannabis has been legalized for medical and/or recreational uses and the unique issues that businesses in the cannabis industry face. Authors offer insights on banking, real estate, finance, corporate entity formation and governance, taxation and creditor rights issues that are distinct to companies in the legal marijuana space, as well as the interplay of collateral businesses to the cannabis industry.

Recent Blog Posts

  • Arkansas Medical Cannabis Program Enjoined Yesterday, a judge in Arkansas enjoined the issuance of any medical cannabis cultivation licenses because of irregularities in the process. I was interview by a local TV station, which can be seen here; More
  • You’re Invited!: “New Marijuana Law Update in New York” Webinar On May 16, 2018, Fox partner Alexander Leonard and associates Matt Kittay and Zev Singer will present a live webinar on New York’s new medical marijuana law and its impact on employers. Alexei, Matt and Zev will discuss key provisions of the new law and their interplay with federal law; practical implications for employers including drug testing, background checks and privacy concerns; as well as disability discrimination issues and off-duty/off-premises policies. They’ll also explore pertinent hypotheticals surrounding the new law. This... More
  • The Green Elephant in the Room: In re Olson Jesse Harris writes: Is a landlord who accepts rent from a cannabis dispensary tenant entitled to bankruptcy relief in a federal forum? In In re Olson, 2018 WL 989263 (B.A.P. 9th Cir. Feb. 5, 2018), the Bankruptcy Appellate Panel for the Ninth Circuit answered: maybe, maybe not, but either way, the bankruptcy court must make specific factual findings based on evidence in the record and explain its reasoning. In Olson, a 92-year-old, legally blind landlord owned a shopping center in which a... More
  • Florida 2018 Legislative Session Comes to a Close With Tweaks to Medical Marijuana Laws and Budget As Florida’s 2018 legislative session comes to a close, its time to review legislative changes to Florida’s medical marijuana laws. First, Florida’s Senate passed HB 6049,  This bill removes the requirement that the Florida medical marijuana license (Florida has a vertical licensing system) reserved for a Black farmer must go to a Black farmer who is a member of the Black Farmers and Agriculturalists Association. As I explained in my earlier posts (here and here), Columbus Smith, a Black farmer from Panama City, filed... More
  • Healthcare Facility Policies in the Age of Medical Marijuana Richard L. Holzworth writes: Copyright: thommorrisphotography / 123RF Stock Photo Despite Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana industry being in its infancy, more than 17,000 patients have registered for the program, and more than 4,000 already have received their medical marijuana card from the Department of Health. Now that cannabis products have burst onto the scene, hospitals and other residential healthcare facilities are struggling with what to do when patients present medical marijuana cards and attempt to use marijuana in the facilities. Indeed, it is... More
  • Trial Set in Florida Case Challenging Medical Marijuana Smoking Ban As I’ve posted before, Florida’s implementation of Amendment Two (medical marijuana) does not permit patients to smoke medical marijuana. Not surprisingly, the ban on smoking of medical marijuana triggered litigation.  Now, that case has been set for a bench trial in May 2018. The lawsuit seeks a declaratory judgment that the smoking ban is contrary to the amendment’s language, which itself does not expressly say medicinal cannabis can be smoked. The suit is against the Department of Health, which regulates medical marijuana.   Dori... More
  • A Pennsylvania Physician’s Guide to Navigating Medical Marijuana Registration On Fox’s Physician Law blog, associate Richard Holzworth recently outlined the requirements for physicians in Pennsylvania who wish to issue medical marijuana “certifications” to their patients under Act 16, the commonwealth’s recently signed law legalizing medical marijuana. In April 2016, Gov. Tom Wolf signed into law Pennsylvania’s compassionate medical cannabis legislation (Act 16), effectively legalizing medical marijuana in the Commonwealth. Since that time, the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) has awarded 12 licenses to grow medical marijuana and 27 licenses to operate... More
  • Will Florida Trade Orange Trees for Hemp Fields? Citrus greening, a disease that has been slowly spreading throughout Florida since 2004, has been putting the squeeze on Florida’s key agricultural crop (the citrus industry in Florida is worth $10.7 billion).  Citrus greening impairs the citrus trees ability to produce fruit and eventually kills the trees.  Many Florida citrus farmers are turning to other crops to replace their orange juice and citrus fruit business including olives, hops (for beer), pomegranates, and even pongamia (a type of legume). Another crop that has... More
  • New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy Signs Executive Order Expanding Access to Medical Marijuana Copyright: adamgolabek / 123RF Stock Photo Peter Kelly writes: New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed an executive order directing the New Jersey Department of Health and the Board of Medical Examiners to review the state’s existing medical marijuana program with a focus on ways to expand access to marijuana for medical purposes. The review will include: An evaluation of the current rules regulating operating and siting of dispensaries and cultivation facilities with particular focus on whether relaxation of rules should be revised to... More
  • California Revised its Contract Law to Protect Cannabis Contracts (Effective January 1, 2018) Jack Praetzellis writes: California law requires all contracts to have a “lawful object”.  Previously, this posed a problem for contracts involving cannabis since cannabis-related contracts are largely unlawful under federal law.  On January 1, 2018, California enacted Civil Code Section 1550.5. That Code Section explicitly states that cannabis-related contracts have a lawful object under California law. California’s new law provides that commercial activity relating to adult-use cannabis conducted in compliance with California law is deemed to be the lawful object of a... More