Medical Marijuana Marijuana

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

Mary Jane Has Come A Long Way, Baby

Last week Governor Jerry Brown signed into law three pieces of legislation (AB 243, AB 266, and SB 643) aimed at regulating the $1.3 billion medical marijuana industry in the state. The legislation, collectively called the...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

Medical Marijuana in the Workplace

With the recent expansion of legislation permitting the production, sale and use of marijuana for medical purposes, employers should begin to think about crafting a policy which addresses medical marijuana use in their...more

Medical Marijuana and Commercial Real Estate in California and Beyond

BB&K attorney Seena Samimi discussed in a Lawline presentation how conflicting medical marijuana laws impact commercial real estate owners, and what they should know in leasing to dispensaries. Real estate impacts...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

Assembly Bill 266 provides long-awaited medical marijuana regulatory framework in California

In 1996, California voters passed Proposition 215 and California became the first state to legalize medical marijuana. Now, 20 years later, AB 266 looks like the state’s best chance at regulating the cultivation and...more

“Zero tolerance” policy on drugs in workplace upheld by human rights tribunal where employee did not have “marijuana card”

An employee who smoked marijuana on the job without legal and medical authorization was not discriminated against when dismissed under his employer’s “zero tolerance” policy, the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal has...more

Miners & Marijuana

As in other industries, mining companies must contend with employees and contractors using or being under the influence of illegal drugs in the workplace. Marijuana is one of the most prominent substances detected in drug...more

For Employers, Recent Decision Highlights Complexity of Medical Marijuana Laws

Last month, the Colorado Supreme Court affirmed the right of an employer to terminate an employee who tests positive for marijuana in violation of the employer’s drug policy. Although the impact of the decision is largely...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

State Legal Marijuana Dispensaries Lose Out on Business Deductions

Federal income tax is a tax on “net” income – gross income less allowable deductions. Unless, however, you are a drug dealer – Code Section 280E does not allow sellers of federally controlled substances to deduct their...more

IRS v. Medical Marijuana: IRS 1 Medical Marijuana 0

The Internal Revenue Code may be the single strongest enforcement weapon in the battle over legal sale and distribution of "medical marijuana". The Opinion of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, Oliver...more

A “Hotbox” Of Legal Issues: California’s Workplace Marijuana Laws

With New York joining in last year, nearly half the country has laws permitting state residents to use marijuana for medical purposes, and a handful even permit recreational use. California led the movement when it passed the...more

The People Have Spoken, and It’s Time to Start Smokin’. . . Or Just Say No

It’s July 1, 2015, and Oregon law now allows adults to lawfully use marijuana for both medical and recreational purposes. Many employers have already faced questions from employees about the impact of the state’s new...more

Trustee Alert – Health Plan Exclusion of Medical Marijuana

Due to changes in state marijuana laws, including medical and recreational use, health plan administrators are wondering whether they may be required to cover medical marijuana or whether a plan can or should exclude it from...more

Rocky Mountain High Part II: Colorado’s Highest Court Approves Employer’s Stance that Employee Toke is No Joke

Last week the Colorado Supreme Court ruled that an employer can fire an employee for use of medical marijuana away from the workplace. The case is Coats v. Dish Network, No. 13SC394 (June 15, 2015). The plaintiff is a...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

Recent Colorado Supreme Court Decision on Medical Marijuana Highlights Risks Facing Employers in Connecticut Who Seek to Enforce...

As many of our clients know, we frequently train and counsel employers on the implications of Connecticut’s medical marijuana law in the workplace. Although medical marijuana use remains illegal under federal law,...more

Medical Marijuana Still “Unlawful”

The Colorado Supreme Court considered whether a state law prohibiting discrimination based on an employee’s “lawful” off-work activities applies to the employee’s use of medical marijuana as permitted under state law. Coats...more

Colorado Decision Shows Continuing Tension Between Legal Marijuana and Employer Drug Testing

Last week, the Colorado Supreme Court rejected the claim of a quadriplegic employee terminated for testing positive for marijuana. In Coats v. Dish Network, LLC, the plaintiff possessed a valid medical marijuana card issued...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

Despite State Laws, Marijuana Use is Illegal and Can be Grounds for Discharge

A client in North Carolina recently asked me whether it was lawful to fire an employee for smoking marijuana. “Of course,” I replied. She then added another fact: the employee had been on vacation in Colorado and returned...more

Study: One in Seven Colorado Adults Use Marijuana

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment reports that roughly one in seven, or 13.5 percent of adults in Colorado currently use marijuana. In addition, nearly half the adult population of Colorado, 48.9...more

Colorado Allows Firing of Employee Who Used Medical Marijuana

As more states jump on the medical marijuana bandwagon, employers are faced with increasing questions about how these changes in the law affect drug testing policies. The conventional wisdom has been that medical marijuana...more

Coats v. Dish Network, LLC: The Colorado Supreme Court Provides Added Certainty Regarding a Colorado Employee’s Use of Medical...

On Monday, June 15, 2015, the Colorado Supreme Court, in a long-awaited decision in the Coats v. Dish Network, LLC, case, confirmed what actions employers may take against employees in Colorado who use medical marijuana...more

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