The market for products provided by cannabis, marijuana, CBD and hemp businesses is expanding daily.  So, too, are the laws and regulations affecting businesses in this emerging, highly-regulated industry.  Businesses in this industry are in a unique position, facing contradictory laws and regulations and situations where no clear legal guidance yet exists.

Eastman & Smith is a full service law firm with a cross-disciplinary team who have experience representing cultivators, producers, dispensaries, health care professionals and product manufacturers with their legal needs for both medical and recreational use (in each case where permitted by state law).  We also assist companies whose customers include cannabis industry businesses such as banks, commercial property owners, suppliers, equipment owners, medical professionals governmental entities and investors.  Services we offer include:

  • Licensing
    • Advise on license application and permitting process of cultivators, processors, dispensaries, testing laboratories and other cannabis businesses.
    • Address post-licensure and post-permit concerns.
  • Regulatory and Compliance
    • Provide guidance regarding compliance with federal, state and local regulations including FDA, farm bills, USDA, agricultural boards, FTC, Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, DEA, local government authorities, state health departments, consumer protection laws, zoning boards, anti-money laundering statutes, Bank Secrecy Act, pharmacy and medical boards.
    • Handle administrative appeals and hearings.
    • Advise regarding conflict among federal, state and local laws.
    • Address matters arising from marketing, storing, shipping, packaging, labeling and distributing cannabis and hemp products.
  • Banking and Finance
    • Provide cannabis companies and financial institutions with advice regarding compliance with federal, state and local laws and regulations.
  • Corporate and Business Operations
    • Provide guidance on business formation including choice of entity, capital acquisition, bylaws and incorporation agreements.
    • Give direction regarding corporate governance.
    • Draft and negotiate agreements and contracts such as supplier, cultivator, distributor, franchise and outsourcing.
    • Address matters arising from mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures and strategic alliances as well as antitrust concerns.
    • Advise regarding successor liability issues.
    • Advise regarding transportation and logistics legal issues.
    • Address liability issues regarding equipment operation, privacy, data security, etc.
  • Government
    • Provide industry entities with government relations services
    • Administrative and government investigations.
    • Advise state and local governments as well as regulatory agencies regarding cannabis and hemp laws and regulations.
  • Health Care
    • Counsel health care practitioners regarding the legalities of recommending cannabis treatments.
    • Defend against medical malpractice allegations.
    • Disciplinary actions.
    • Assisting practitioners with obtaining certifications.
  • Intellectual Property
    • Give guidance regarding intellectual property protection including the registration of trademarks and copyrights.
    • Address issues regarding branding, licensing and trade secrets.
    • Advise on the monetizing of intellectual property.
    • Defend intellectual property.
  • Labor and Employment
    • Draft documents such as handbooks, policies and procedures, as well as noncompetition, executive and severance agreements.
    • Provide guidance on background checks, employee use of cannabis and employee relations.
    • Offer advice for compliance with federal, state and local laws and regulations.
  • Litigation
    • Offer alternative dispute resolution and mediation services.
    • Assess and mitigate legal risk.
    • Represent entities in bankruptcy proceedings.
    • Litigate issues including breach of contract, product liability, fraud, RICO, bankruptcy, shareholder disputes and supplier agreements.
  • Real Estate
    • Advise landlords and tenants regarding issues associated with cannabis businesses.
    • Address environmental issues and considerations associated with land development, water and environmental impact.
    • Handle land use and zoning compliance.
    • Draft real estate contracts such as land sales, acquisitions and leases.
    • Address issues arising from grassroots/NIMBY movements.
  • Taxation
    • Advise on local and state tax issues including sales and usage taxes.
    • Provide guidance in regards to federal tax implications.

Our attorneys regularly write and speak on emerging legal issues and changes in laws and regulations to enable clients to make informed decisions. 

Should you have any questions regarding how we may assist you, please contact one of our Cannabis and Hemp Law attorneys.

Disclaimer:  Regardless of any state’s laws decriminalizing the possession, cultivation, use, sale and/or distribution of marijuana, marijuana remains illegal under federal law.  No information on this web site nor advice provided by our attorneys is intended to provide assistance or guidance in regards to violating federal law.

Publications & News