[Virtual Conference] The Cannabis Law Sessions

June 2nd
Virtual Conference
International Cannabis Bar Association (INCBA)
June 2nd, 2020
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM PST
Virtual Conference,
$ 300.00

Join INCBA for our third annual presentation of The Cannabis Law Sessions. We will present six hours of CLE focused on emerging issues in the US and Global Cannabis Markets - Online Streaming.


Cannabis Taxation: Preparing Your Client for the IRS Audit Ramp-Up

The IRS has started to staff their cannabis audit team, which portends a ramp-up of audit activity in the 2020 year and beyond. Simultaneously, we are seeing an uptick in state-level tax audits for cannabis industry market participants. Learn how to advise your clients to avoid additional scrutiny on the front end, how to prepare for an audit, and how to position your client for success post-audit. The panel will also take a look at novel state-level tax issues, such as a potency tax, and how that changes the bottom line for our clients.

Jessica Velazquez, InDiva Advisors (NV)
David Ruskin, Horwood Marcus & Berk (IL)
Katye Maxson-Landis, Moxy Accounting, AICPA IRS Cannabis Committee Member (OR)
Nick Richards, Greenspoon Marder (CO)

Corporate Governance: Best Practices, High-Profile Failures, and Lessons Learned

Corporate governance is key to any company’s long-term success as it enables an organization to control risks, achieve their goals, and assure regulatory compliance throughout. Companies in the cannabis space are no different, and in fact, must implement more robust corporate governance policies and infrastructure than companies in most other industries as they’re uniquely operating within a highly-regulated industry subject to federal prohibition. This panel will discuss, among other things: (i) the goals of implementing solid corporate governance infrastructure; (ii) the importance of advising clients about best practices (including a discussion of the often-overlooked federal guidelines from the United States Sentencing Commission); (iii) the importance of implementing corporate governance controls and policies during a company’s infancy; and (iv) lessons learned from high-profile cannabis companies whose poor corporate governance practices had damaging impact, including companies like Namaste Technologies.

Amy McDougal, CLEAResources (VA)
Bryna Dahlin, Benesch, Friedlander, Coplan & Aronoff LLP (IL)
David Feldman, Hiller PC (NY)
Jessica Gonzalez, Bressler Amery & Ross (NJ)

Social Equity & Racial Justice: A Survey of Programs, Shortcomings, and Next Steps

As the "war on drugs" is now a billion dollar per year industry the impact of decades of prison to pipeline legislation still devastates communities of color.

Many of the state and federal policies that contain a "social equity" agenda are simply words on paper. This panel will discuss the tactics states have adopted to keep people of color out of the industry along with resolutions. In addition to legal experts, farmers of color will share their challenges of attempting to break into the industry and recommendations. Attendees will leave the session knowledgeable about current equity policy impacts not only on retailers and indoor grow operations but rural communities of color.

Yvette McDowell, Municipal Cannabis Consultant (CA)
Jillian Hishaw, Jillian Hishaw Esq., LL.M (NC)
Pete Charlerie, Independent Consultant on Energy and Agriculture (FL)

Cannabis Laws & Science

How can policy makers implement sound rules and regulations? This session will explore the science behind the various rules and regulations in different states and explore key aspects that lawyers and regulators should know. We will review differences in state regulations, such as product safety and testing standards, and examine the scientific logic behind why certain policies were put into place.

Heather Despres, American for Safe Access (CA)
James Stephens, Ph.D. (CA)
Dr. Andrew Hall, Green Scientific Labs (FL)
Antonio Frazier (CA), Director of Operations at CannaSafe
Margaret Richardson, Chief Compliance and Legal Officer for Global Widget, LLC. (FL)

Regulation of non-THC Cannabinoids

Despite its historical status as the “King” of cannabinoids, THC has seen significant competition from other cannabinoids, most notably CBD. Several factors have converged to create a rapidly developing market in non-THC cannabinoids such as CBG, CBC, THCV, delta-8 THC, and CBN. These factors include the removal of hemp-derived cannabinoids from the Controlled Substances Act, advancements in extraction technology, and an increasingly educated and engaged public. Using the current regulatory landscape of CBD as a jumping-off point, this panel will explore this new market from a regulatory standpoint. We will discuss what these cannabinoids are and how they are likely to be used; whether they will encounter similar regulatory obstacles as CBD in coming to market; and whether we should continue to think of cannabinoids as a unified “block” for regulatory purposes,or if they will each have separate paths.

Ian Stewart, Wilson Elser (CA)
Rod Kight, Kight on Cannabis (NC)
Daniel Young Ph.D., Grassland Botanicals (CA)
Nathalie Bougenies, Harris Bricken (OR)

Ethics - Rule 1.2 - The Novel “Also Advise” Provision Relating to Federal Law

Many states that have permitted attorneys to advise cannabis industry clients under Rule 1.2 have set forth a threshold requirement that the attorney “also advise” on “related federal law” or “other laws.” Since the permitted scope of legal representation begins with this threshold requirement, hear from the panel about what “also advise” means in practice, including what federal laws are considered “related,” how to determine if federal law “conflicts” with what your client seeks to do, and how to ensure you have adequately advised your client to comply with the new Rule 1.2 provision. This rule affects attorneys in: AK, AZ, CA, CO, CT, FL, HI, IL, ME, MA, NV, NH, NJ, OH, OR, PA, RI, WV. May also affect attorneys in OK and GA (no official rule changes yet, but as model rule states that have legalized forms of cannabis above federal limits, rule changes are pending).

Amy McDougal, CLEAResources (VA)
Michael Drumke, Swanson, Martin & Bell, LLP, ABA Board of Governors (IL)
Lauren Rudick, Hiller PC (NY)
David Ruskin, Horwood Marcus & Berk (IL)

* Educational topics subject to change based on what the INCBA CLE Committee believes are the most pertinent subjects facing the cannabis industry.


International Cannabis Bar Association (INCBA)

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