Nationwide Medical Marijuana

Eighteen states and the District of Columbia have legalized medical marijuana since California became the first state to do so in 1996.

Our Los Angeles marijuana lawyers continue to monitor the legal status of recreational and medicinal cannabis nationwide.

Recreational Cannabis Laws

In 2012, Colorado and Washington State became the first states in the nation to legalize marijuana for private recreational possession and consumption. The federal government has indicated it would take enforcement action against growers and distributors for violating the Controlled Substances Act, which considers marijuana a Schedule I narcotic under federal law.

Medical Marijuana State Law v. Federal Government

In an increasing number of cases, the federal government is targeting growers and distributors. In some cases, the Internal Revenue Service may get involved or the government pressures banks and landlords to make it difficult for a legitimate marijuana business to operate.

A new generation of entrepreneurs is investing in what is already a billion dollar industry. Growing at a rate of 12.5 percent a year since 2001, the growth rate is expected to accelerate to 24.3 percent annually by 2018, when the industry will have estimated revenue of $5 billion a year.

The stakes are high and nowhere is that more obvious than when identifying the industry’s most active opponents: Breweries and pharmaceutical companies, law enforcement and prison guard unions and the private prison industry. Those who successfully establish firm footing in the industry will be in the best position to survive and thrive for decades to come.

In a growing number of states – including Washington, Alaska, Delaware and Hawaii – no dispensary system exists for patients to legally obtain medication. Conversely, in states moving to aggressively monitor and control cultivation and distribution, the federal government is just as likely to threaten legal action for sanctioning production and distribution of an illegal narcotic under the Controlled Substances Act.

Legal Help for Dispensaries, Growers and Patients

A legal environment in which marijuana businesses targeted for enforcement must raise compliance with state law as an affirmative defense, means an experienced medical marijuana defense firm is a necessity. A legitimate enterprise may still be targeted with enforcement and prosecution – a guilty until proven innocent approach too often adopted by law enforcement slow to recognize the new legal landscape governing growers, distributors and patients.

Dispensaries typically only get one shot at the application process. Our veteran Los Angeles medical marijuana attorneys have been at the forefront of this issue for a decade, and can assist dispensaries nationwide with legal questions. Avoiding some of the common pitfall in licensing and establishing a medical marijuana dispensary will put your business on solid footing in an industry with promising growth potential for years to come.

Marijuana Lawyers – 949-375-4734
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