Criminal Law Conflict of Laws

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AG's latest remarks signal no outright campaign against cannabis yet

On March 2, 2017, it seemed as if the U.S. Department of Justice was aiming to crack down on the U.S. cannabis industry in a way not seen since before the previous administration. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions and White...more

What Would "Greater Enforcement" Mean for Washington's Cannabis Businesses?

Justice Department has options to crack down, but may galvanize the push for even wider legalization - In statements that were perhaps inevitable but nonetheless surprising to the cannabis industry, White House Press...more

Trump Administration May Enforce Federal Laws Prohibiting Non-Medical Use of Marijuana

In one of the Trump Administration’s first public statements on recreational marijuana, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer stated in a press conference today that the Department of Justice may seek “greater enforcement”...more

Navigating Through the Hazy Intersection of Financial Services and the Legal Marijuana Industry

As more states legalize marijuana use, financial institutions face increased uncertainty about how to handle accounts opened by marijuana-related businesses (MRBs) in light of regulatory difficulties stemming from the obvious...more

Supreme Court Update: Bravo-Fernandez V. United States (15-537) And Order List

12.2.2016 Greetings Court Fans! The Court issued its first signed opinion of the term this week, a unanimous decision in Bravo-Fernandez v. United States (15-537) holding that the Double Jeopardy Clause does not bar the...more

Thoughts on Drones: The View from the Bench

Having just returned from the American Bar Association Aviation and Aerospace Committee Conference, I would like to share some thoughts on drones conveyed from the view of the bench and the regulators....more

Warning to "Marijuana Investors" Consider Federal Enforcement

The Controlled Substances Act ("CSA") lists Marijuana (cannabis) as a Schedule 1 drug. That means "the drug or substance has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. Efforts to reclassify marijuana...more

DEA Just Said No to Rescheduling Cannabis: Why It Matters

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) recently denied a petition to initiate proceedings to reschedule cannabis under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). Thus, Cannabis will remain a Schedule I substance under the CSA. ...more

DEA Rejects Petitions Seeking to Reschedule Marijuana

The long-awaited decision maintains the illegal status of marijuana under federal law. On August 12, the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), despite much speculation to the contrary, published in the Federal Register its...more

Bongs and Busts – the Danger of State Cannabis Laws to Non-U.S. Citizens

Seattle, Washington, where I practice, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the U.S. Its natural beauty and cosmopolitan vibe are two of its biggest attractions. But increasingly, Cannabis Tourism has been a...more

Cannabis Trademark Strategy in Jeopardy

The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board of the U.S. Trademark Office (TTAB) just rejected a popular strategy for protecting cannabis-related marks at the federal level. Many forward-thinking cannabis businesses have applied to...more

Recreational Cannabis — Section 280E and Tax Efficient Structuring

I. The Conflict: The long arm of federal law Recreational cannabis businesses operate in a world of conflicting state and federal laws. Several states have legalized recreational cannabis, yet, under federal law, cannabis...more

Recreational Cannabis — Section 280E and Tax Efficient Structuring

Recreational cannabis businesses operate in a world of conflicting state and federal laws. Several states have legalized recreational cannabis, yet, under federal law, cannabis remains an illegal Schedule I drug under the...more

You Should Know - June 2016

Has Legalizing Pot Caused More Road Accidents, Injuries or Deaths? Elizabeth Kemble, a widely admired advocate for kidney health in Oregon, was out for a walk following her third kidney transplant when she was killed by...more

Emergency Moratorium in Unincorporated King County

In a surprise move, the Metropolitan King County Council imposed a four-month moratorium on accepting or issuing permits for marijuana growers, processors, and retailers. The moratorium took effect Monday, April 25th, and...more

The Appellate Rules Trump Statutory Jurisdiction in State v. Biddix

The jurisdiction of the North Carolina Court of Appeals is determined by statute. See N.C. Const. art. IV, § 12(2). But the practice and procedure of appellate jurisdiction is determined by the North Carolina Rules of...more

Supreme Court Update: Lockhart V. United States (14-8358), Gobeille V. Liberty Mutual Insurance Co. (14-181)

Who could have imagined a month ago that our summary of Justice Scalia's dissent in Montgomery v. Alabama (14-280) would be our last opportunity to analyze an opinion from the Justice who, alongside Jackson and Holmes, will...more

The Supreme Court - March 2016

The Supreme Court of the United States issued decisions in two cases on March 1, 2016: Gobeille v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., No. 14-181: Respondent Liberty Mutual Insurance Company, which has an “employee welfare benefit...more

U.S. District Court Says No to Marijuana Industry Credit Union in Colorado

Financial institutions fear providing banking services to the cannabis industry for numerous reasons: potential criminal liability, loss of federal insurance, asset seizure, loan collateral vulnerability, civil lawsuits, the...more

Supreme Court Update: DIRECTV, Inc. V. Imburgia (14-462), White V. Wheeler 14-1372) And Order List

First, in DIRECTV, Inc. v. Imburgia (14-462), the Court addressed for the third time in five years the latest fad in Federal Arbitration Act jurisprudence: whether to enforce a waiver of class arbitration in a consumer...more

Marijuana Regulations Growing Like Weeds in California

Although California legalized medical marijuana in 1996, cities have differed widely in their response to medical marijuana dispensaries. Recently, Newport Beach joined Huntington Beach, Laguna Hills, Anaheim and Rancho Santa...more

Expanding Scope of Federal Wiretapping Powers

USA Today’s front-page headline, above the fold, on November 12, 2015 read, “Massive Wire-tapping Operation in L.A.” The secondary headline read, “Drug Agents Intercept More Than 2 Million Conversations in USA.” ...more

Reality Check: Fantasy Sports Sites Facing Serious New Challenges

Fantasy sports, especially Daily fantasy sports (“DFS”), are big business in the United States. Two DFS sites in particular, FanDuel and DraftKings, are the most dominant players in this industry (they control 95% of the DFS...more

Supreme Court Update: Maryland V. Kulbicki (14-848) And Order List

… und willkommen zurück! Oktober Term 2015 kicks off today with argument in OBB Personenverkehr AG v. Sachs (13-1067), a case which explores the contours of the commercial-activity exception to the Foreign Sovereign...more

Growing Medical Marijuana, Problematic in Bankruptcy, and Out

Frank Arenas is licensed in Colorado to grow and dispense medical marijuana. He and his wife own a building, half of which is used for the cultivation and the other half of which is leased to a marijuana dispensary. These...more

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