As many states continue to ease regulations and the Food and Drug Administration considers moving cannabis to Schedule III, commercial real estate is increasingly buzzed with interest in properties for use by cannabis businesses, from agricultural land and warehouses to retail spaces. Despite this seemingly abundant opportunity, investors currently find themselves navigating the still murky waters of federal illegality.

The Blunt Truth’s Stan Jutkowitz joins James O’Brien and Eric Greenberg on The Property LineTM Podcast to discuss the cannabis industry landscape, hurdles faced when securing and investing in suitable real estate, and risks and liabilities for owners leasing to cannabis businesses.

Continue Reading Highs and Lows of Cannabis CRE

In a recent legal development that underscores the intricate interplay between federal bankruptcy law and the cannabis industry, a court case has emerged involving a bankruptcy filing by an employee of a cannabis company. It’s well established that, because cannabis is generally considered a controlled substance under the federal Controlled Substances Act (CSA), certain cannabis related companies are precluded from obtaining debt relief through bankruptcy. Now individuals employed by cannabis companies might find themselves in the same boat. In Blumsack v. Harrington, 2024 Bankr. LEXIS 560* (March 2024), the United States Bankruptcy Appellate Panel for the First Circuit (the “Bankruptcy Appeals Court”) upheld, albeit on different grounds, the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Massachusetts’ dismissal of the Chapter 13 bankruptcy filing of an individual employed by a cannabis company, because of the source of the individual’s income.

Continue Reading Budtender Bankruptcy Blindside

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana. This week, Virginia Governor Youngkin took action on the retail market bill. The Florida Supreme Court handed down their decision on a ballot initiative. The Kansas legislature determined how to proceed on a medical marijuana measure. Federal legislators asked the Department of Justice to develop a successor to the Cole Memorandum. And finally, there’s a new reality series in the works that involves cannabis.

Continue Reading The Week in Weed: April 5, 2024

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana. This week, we see Janet Yellen expressing support for the SAFE Banking Act. Germany legalizes cannabis, but not a retail market. A group of Attorneys General express their views on hemp. And finally, Mike Tyson is selling cannabis edibles – only one guess as to their shape.

Continue Reading The Week in Weed: March 29, 2024

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana. This week, we note that New York Governor Hochul has had just about enough of the problems with cannabis licensing in her state. The Vice President held a roundtable discussion on cannabis in the White House. Maryland held a cannabis lottery late last week for social equity licensees. We check in on Virginia to see how that retail market bill is coming along. And finally, the New Orleans Police Department really needs to better secure its evidence room.

Continue Reading The Week in Weed: March 22, 2024

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana. This week, we check in on Virginia, to see if there’s any progress on the retail market bill. We re-visit the Eastern Band of Cherokee in North Carolina, who are planning to set up their first dispensary. We note that Hawai’i has an adult-use bill moving through their legislature. Trulieve got a tax refund – will that lead other cannabis companies to try to get money back? And finally, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert had a piece on Germany legalizing marijuana.

Continue Reading The Week in Weed: March 8, 2024

Federal trademark registration is typically unavailable for goods and services related to the sale of cannabis.  But a combination of federal copyright registration and state trademark registration for these goods and services may provide an opportunity for cannabis companies to protect the substantial investments made in their brands and offerings.  A recent case in California, The Holding Company LLC v. Pacific West Distributors et al. 2:24-cv-00986-DDP-JDE, illustrates potential strategies surrounding intellectual property protection for those in the industry to consider.  It’s easy to imagine what may happen if a competitor began using your branding in a way that treads on your investment without legal means to stop them.  The strategies we discuss below may not be appropriate for all cases.  But cannabis companies, along with their counsel, should evaluate the potential costs and benefits of pursuing these strategies to protect their businesses. 

Continue Reading Whoa! Cannabis Company Lawsuit Lights Up the Benefits of Creative IP Protection

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana. This week, we check on the retail market legislation in Virginia. New Hampshire’s House of Representatives passed an adult-use cannabis bill. Arkansas’ Attorney General gives the go-ahead for advocates to start collecting signatures for a ballot initiative. Nevada opens its first cannabis consumption lounges. And finally, what have those teachers at Abbott Elementary been smoking?

Continue Reading The Week in Weed: March 1, 2024

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana. This week, we have an update on the New York licensing situation. We travel abroad to check in on Germany and Ukraine. We note that medical marijuana legalization is not happening this year in Wisconsin. And finally, could cannabis make an appearance in Madison Square Garden?

Continue Reading The Week in Weed: February 23, 2024

Welcome back to The Week in Weed, your Friday look at what’s happening in the world of legalized marijuana. This week, we see a retail market bill make progress in the Virginia legislature. There was a Senate vote in South Carolina on medical marijuana. A cannabis initiative could make its way onto the Arkansas ballot this November. Rep. Blumenauer wants a status report on re-scheduling. And finally, Ozzy Osbourne speaks out in favor of legalization.

Continue Reading The Week in Weed: February 16, 2024