The United States Senate voted last week to legalize hemp as part of a provision of the omnibus Farm Bill. If signed into law, the measure would legalize the plant for growth and production across the country. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) noted in support of passage that “consumers across America buy hundreds of millions in retail products every year that contain hemp, but due to outdated federal regulations that do not sufficiently distinguish this industrial crop from its illicit cousin,… More
Pursuant to the legislature’s direction, the Cannabis Control Commission can start issuing adult use licenses after June 1 and the Commission has indicated that they will start issuing licenses soon.
We expect that a handful of previously medical-only cannabis dispensaries that are awarded adult use licenses will be dispensing both adult use and medical cannabis on July 1 or shortly thereafter. The lines will be very long. … More
Cannabis trademarks. By now, most IP lawyers know two things about them.
First, even though cannabis is legal in an increasing number of states (9 allow recreational use; 29 allow medical use), the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is refusing applications to federally register cannabis trademarks, no matter the home state of the applicant, until the substance gets reclassified by or removed from the Controlled Substances Act (which doesn’t seem to be on the immediate horizon).… More
We posted in January about proposed regulations for advertising adult-use marijuana in Massachusetts once retail sales begin on July 1, 2018. After a series of public meetings and more than 500 public comments, the Cannabis Control Commission (“Commission”) revised the draft and unanimously approved final regulations in early March. This means that the rules of the road for advertising by “Marijuana Retailers” in Massachusetts are now set,… More
Sticking to the timeline that it promised, the Cannabis Control Commission (CCC) has created the framework so that adult use dispensing will begin in Massachusetts in July.
The regulations are finalized. The timeline for applications is as follows: (i) potential priority applicants can apply for certification as of April 1; (ii) certified priority applicants can apply for licenses as of April 15; (iii) non-priority applicants can apply for cultivation,… More
With the first retail sales of adult use marijuana slated to take place in just over five months, the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission (the “Commission”) is working overtime to regulate an industry that some project will exceed $1 billion in revenue by 2020. As the July 1st target date for the opening of retail cannabis shops approaches, one area that will undoubtedly become the focus of much attention is the ability of retailers to market their wares. … More
The Cannabis Control Commission issued its draft use regulations for the adult-use market in late December and have asked for public comment by February 15 so that the regulations can be finalized and released to accept applications for licensure in early April. As we have noted here before, the CCC deserves credit for moving as quickly as they have and for keeping themselves on track to have dispensing of adult-use cannabis in July. … More
The decision by Attorney General Sessions to repeal the Cole and Ogden memos has brought greater legal uncertainty to an industry that is used to uncertainty. What does the decision mean for Massachusetts?
First, at least in the short term, the decision should not have a major effect on our medical marijuana industry in the Commonwealth. Under the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment, federal prosecutors may not use resources to prosecute those in the medical marijuana industry who are acting consistently with state law. … More
While we don’t love all of the ideas that came out of the Cannabis Control Commission this past week, you have to keep them credit. The CCC met in an open setting for six hours for four days straight and thoughtfully hammered out a road map for adult use cannabis for the future. The CCC made decisions on big issues that will pave the way for the release of the draft regulations next week.… More
Despite a less-than-friendly administration, a number of federal cannabis bills have recently been introduced to Congress. Here is a list of bills marijuana business owners should be keeping an eye on:
The Marijuana Justice Act
S.1689, sponsored by Senator Cory Booker (D-New Jersey), introduced August 1, 2017.