Controlled Substances Act

News & Analysis as of

California marijuana dispensary scores victory against DOJ … but how long will it last?

The Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana (MAMM), one of California’s oldest lawful marijuana dispensaries, won a major victory against the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) in October. In U.S. v. Marin Alliance for Medical...more

Congress Clears Controlled Substances Act Scheduling Legislation

On November 16, 2015, the House of Representatives approved HR 639, the Improving Regulatory Transparency for New Medical Therapies Act, clearing it for the President. The legislation would amend the Controlled Substances...more

Top takeaways from the 2015 Las Vegas Marijuana Business Convention

Joan Lebow, Carl Rowley, and Fred Roth of Thompson Coburn's cannabis practice attended Marijuana Business Media’s 2015 Marijuana Business Conference at the Rio Hotel, Las Vegas, where more than 5,500 attendees attended...more

FDA Regulatory and Compliance Monthly Recap — October 2015

FDA releases draft ICH guidance with aim to improve pharmaceutical benefit-risk assessments - The agency released ICH guidance to regulate how pharmaceutical makers should present benefit-risk information in regulatory...more

Federal court rules that DEA must stop interfering with compliant medical marijuana businesses

On October 19, 2015, the United States District Court for the Northern District of California rejected an argument by the US Government seeking a narrow interpretation of congressional legislation designed to limit federal...more

Employers and medical marijuana: Are California's anti-drug policies up in smoke?

What’s an employer to do when faced with employees using marijuana in or out of the workplace? How should employers respond to employees who use or possess marijuana legally under California law? How does such use or...more

EPA'S Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals Rules May Impose Significant Burdens on Health Care Facilities - Comment Period Runs Until...

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has promulgated its proposed regulation of “hazardous waste pharmaceuticals,” i.e., pharmaceutical residues discarded from health care facilities which also meet EPA’s long-standing...more

Health Care Physicians in the Crosshairs: Criminal Prosecution

Recent changes to our health care system have been at the forefront of the American news cycle for several years. But certain aspects have not received adequate attention. One example is the scrutiny federal and state...more

A Real Bummer for The Marijuana Industry

As a general rule, in accordance with IRC § 162(a), taxpayers are allowed to deduct, for federal income tax purposes, all of the ordinary and necessary expenses they paid or incurred during the taxable year in carrying on a...more

Brandmarking - Volume 4, Number 3 - October 2015

Eight Things Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know About Creating and Protecting Brand Identity - First in a series. Every entrepreneur knows the importance of establishing a strong brand for a new business or product...more

Senate HELP Committee Approves Mental Health, Opioid Abuse, Drug Scheduling Legislation

On September 30, 2015, the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee approved the following bipartisan legislation: S. 799, the Protecting Our Infants Act (to combat the rise of prenatal opioid abuse and...more

Conflicting State and Federal Laws May Result in Crippling Blows to Business in the Marijuana Industry

As of October 2015, four states have legalized marijuana for recreational use: Alaska, Colorado, Oregon and Washington. The recreational marijuana movement—although slow in terms of states following by legalizing use—has had...more

Branding your bud: Why trademarks are tricky for marijuana businesses

Brand loyalty builds businesses. That’s why most businesses need successful brands, and, ideally, brands backed by a federal trademark registration. But because of the federal laws affecting marijuana and related products,...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

Telemedicine Prescribers Should Read This Case: U.S. vs. Zadeh

Health care providers who use telemedicine for remote prescribing of controlled substances should pay close attention to an important case currently pending at the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. The case will decide whether...more

Despite federal guidance, financial institutions hesitant to bank on cannabis businesses

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) have both issued guidance intending to ease concerns that the federal government would target banks working with marijuana businesses...more

Employer Required to Reimburse Employee For Medical Marijuana Treatment

The Court of Appeals of New Mexico issued a decision last week that many employers believe flies in the face of the Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. §§ 801 (“CSA”), and the Justice Department’s August 29, 2013 Memorandum....more

Colorado Supreme Court Upholds Firing For Medical Marijuana Use

In a closely watched case, the Colorado Supreme Court ruled that an employer could lawfully terminate an employee who tested positive for marijuana in a random drug test, even though the employee’s use of marijuana was...more

Think Twice about DEA Voluntary Surrender

It can be an intimidating experience to be sure… A DEA agent or Diversion Investigator, on an unscheduled visit to your office, confronts you with a KASPER, a KBML complaint or some other state regulatory action and alleges...more

Colorado Medical Marijuana Case is Not as Far-Reaching as Expected

On June 15, 2015, the Colorado Supreme Court issued its highly anticipated decision in Coats v. Dish Network. In a unanimous decision, the court in Coats upheld the termination of an employee who failed a random drug test...more

Supreme Court Update: Mcfadden V. United States (14-378), Ohio V. Clark (13-1352), Brumfield V. Cain (13-1433) And Davis V. Ayala...

We're back with Part II of our last-Thursday round-up, just in time for another decision dump from One First Street. Last week, the Court handed down decisions in Los Angeles v. Patel (13-1175), Kimble v. Marvel Enterprises...more

Colorado Supreme Court Plays Debbie Downer for Medical Pot Users

The wait is finally over. Employers in Colorado – and in other states with similar lifestyle laws – can breathe a sigh of relief following a recent ruling by the Colorado Supreme Court. In Coats v. Dish Network, a...more

HHS Removes Extra Hurdle for Marijuana Research

The process for studying the potential medical benefits of marijuana became more streamlined on Tuesday, when the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services eliminated a controversial requirement for Public Health Service...more

Colorado Supreme Court Okays Discharge of Medical Marijuana-Using Employee

Colorado, like some other states including New York, has a law that generally prohibits an employer from discharging an employee for engaging in lawful activities outside of work. Earlier this week, in Coats v. Dish Network,...more

It’s Not All “High” in the Rockies – Colorado Supreme Court Finds That Employees Can Be Fired For Use of Medical Marijuana

As more states legalize medical marijuana and consider legalization of “recreational” marijuana, many employers have wrestled with the question of whether they can still maintain a drug free workplace or must allow employees...more

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