Medical Marijuana Controlled Substances Act

Medical Marijuana refers to the use of marijuana to treat or alleviate symptoms of certain illnesses. A growing number of states permit individuals to use marijuana on the recommendation of a physician. Despite... more +
Medical Marijuana refers to the use of marijuana to treat or alleviate symptoms of certain illnesses. A growing number of states permit individuals to use marijuana on the recommendation of a physician. Despite state laws to the contrary, Federal law still prohibits the use or possession of marijuana. The conflict between state and federal law on this issue has created interesting enforcement issues and significant legal hurdles for medical marijuana providers.  less -
News & Analysis as of

California Court of Appeal Resoundingly Rejects A Statutory Right To Access Medical Marijuana Shops By The Disabled

Pursuant to the Americans With Disabilities Act (“ADA”) (42 U.S.C. Section 1201, et seq.) and California’s Civil Code Section 54 (the “DPA”), individuals with disabilities are entitled to “the same rights as the general...more

The silver lining in the DEA’s refusal to reclassify cannabis

As far back as 2011, elected officials have sent letters to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration urging it to reclassify cannabis by removing it from the list of Schedule I controlled substances. After promising a...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

The DEA Is Getting Past Just Saying No: Scientific Research Into Medical Uses of Marijuana Is a Bridge Toward a Policy Shift

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA)’s recent decision declining to reschedule cannabis is a step bridging the national discussion — a step toward a possible agreement on medical cannabis through scientific research. The...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

DEA Rejects Petitions to Reclassify Marijuana, but Opens the Door to Expanded Marijuana Research Efforts

In a long-awaited decision released this morning, the United States Drug Enforcement Administration announced that it has denied two petitions to reschedule marijuana under the Controlled Substances Act (the “CSA”). The DEA...more

DEA Declines to Change Stance on Marijuana but Opens Door to Federally Sanctioned Marijuana Research

On August 11, 2016, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) formally declined to change its position on the medical or recreational use of marijuana, denying two petitions urging the federal government to change marijuana’s...more

Enacting and Enforcing Local Ordinances to Prohibit Medical Marijuana Dispensaries – Up in Smoke?

California’s cities and counties have a long and growing track record successfully defending challenges to their land use authority filed on behalf of medical marijuana dispensaries. These successes are largely a product of...more

In the Weeds Between Federal and State Law: Brand Name for Legal Marijuana Sales Denied Federal Registration

In a precedential opinion, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) affirmed a USPTO refusal to register the trademark HERBAL ACCESS on the basis the use of the mark in commerce was unlawful under the Controlled Substances...more

Trademark Goods/Services Limitations, Why Not Exclude Any Federal Unlawful Activities?

Those involved in the cannabis industry — where certain activities are legal in some States, but unlawful under federal law — continue to search for creative strategies and solutions in protecting their trademarks and service...more

High Stakes: Investing in a Legal Marijuana Business

Considering diversifying with a high-risk investment? Heard the lure of the “green rush” toward a possible $100 billion legal marijuana industry? Before you write that check... Please see full Article below for...more

Court Declines to Prevent Merger of Washington Medical and Recreational Marijuana Markets

Over the last year, the Washington state marijuana industry has anticipated the transition from an unregulated medical marijuana market to an integrated, medical-recreational market on July 1, 2016, under the Cannabis Patient...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

Ohio Becomes the Latest State to Legalize Marijuana for Certain Medical Uses While Avoiding Constitutional Ballot Initiatives

Last year, Ohio legislators found themselves caught in the middle of a media firestorm created by various pro-legalized marijuana groups who were politically savvy and financially funded enough to place multiple proposed...more

Medical Marijuana and an Employer’s Rights in DC, Maryland, and Virginia

The District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia have all taken steps toward legalizing marijuana in some form. However, these laws differ in many respects and raise some interesting questions for employers. Because medical...more

Pennsylvania's Medical Marijuana Act Leaves Employers' Ability to Enforce Strict Drug-Free Workplace Policies Hazy

On April 17, 2016, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf signed legislation authorizing the use of medical marijuana (the Medical Marijuana Act or MMA) in Pennsylvania. The new law – effective May 17, 2016 – allows patients...more

The Challenges of the Evolving Marijuana Industry: Reconciling State Legislation with Federal Prohibition

Cultivation, production, distribution, or possession of marijuana is a federal criminal offense under the Controlled Substances Act (the CSA). Yet, despite federal prohibition, state-sanctioned marijuana industries have...more

Employment Practices Newsletter - February 2016

In New Guidance, DOL Gets Aggressive on “Joint Employment” - By issuing a new interpretative document in January, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division attempted to clarify the concept of “joint...more

Haze Lifting on Employer's Rights and Medical Marijuana

The fast expansion of the medical marijuana movement has brought with it growing confusion on the line between a workers' rights to take advantage of the rights afforded by these state statutes and an employer's right to...more

Waiting to Exhale: Cannabis industry breathes sigh of relief over extension of Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment

With the recent signing of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2016 (H.R. 2029), President Obama extended a provision through September 2016 that restricts the federal government from interfering with states’ rights to...more

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

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

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

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

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