Cannabis

  • May 16, 2024

    11th Circ. Denies Ayahuasca Church's Bid For Rehearing

    The Eleventh Circuit has refused to grant an en banc rehearing to a Florida church that wanted to use ayahuasca as a sacrament, leaving in place an appellate ruling that the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration properly denied a religious exemption from federal law against the psychedelic substance.

  • May 16, 2024

    Pa. Pot Co. Says No Deal To Breach In Growth IP Suit

    A Pennsylvania cannabis cultivator is asking a federal court to dismiss a suit claiming it broke an oral agreement with a consulting firm and continued to use the firm's trade secrets, saying no oral contract existed, nor was the firm's information trade secrets.

  • May 16, 2024

    HUD Calls Pa. Medical Marijuana Housing Suit Premature

    A Pennsylvania housing authority and two would-be residents acted hastily in suing the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, since HUD hadn't formally threatened to pull the authority's funding over a state court order to offer assistance to medical marijuana users, a HUD lawyer told a federal judge Thursday.

  • May 16, 2024

    Biden Admin Proposes To Loosen Restrictions On Marijuana

    President Joe Biden on Thursday announced that his administration has formally recommended relaxing restrictions on marijuana, marking the most significant federal policy shift on cannabis since the drug was criminalized more than 50 years ago.

  • May 15, 2024

    Calif. Atty Tells 4th Circ. Dormant Commerce Applies To Pot

    A California lawyer who has filed lawsuits challenging state and local cannabis licensure programs spearheaded an appeal at the Fourth Circuit asking it to find that the dormant commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution applies to federally illegal marijuana.

  • May 15, 2024

    'Excellent' Altria MDL Deal Earns Attys Fees Above Benchmark

    A California federal judge on Wednesday awarded $13.65 million in plaintiffs' attorney fees as part of tobacco giant Altria's $45.5 million deal resolving consumer claims in multidistrict litigation alleging the company helped fuel a youth vaping crisis created by e-cigarette maker Juul, saying the "excellent result" merited fees above the normal 25% benchmark.

  • May 15, 2024

    Prosecutors Fight Full Court Review Of 'Double Odor' Pot Test

    North Carolina prosecutors said no review is necessary on a state appellate court's opinion which found that the smell of marijuana combined with the "strong odor of a cologne" as a "cover scent" is enough to give police officers probable cause to search a vehicle, highlighting the hostile tone in the appellant's bid.

  • May 15, 2024

    Daimler Settles Worker's Suit Claiming Pot Test Got Him Fired

    Daimler Truck North America LLC has settled an employee's New Jersey federal court suit claiming he was illegally fired over a positive cannabis test following an accident in a company vehicle, even though he wasn't found at fault for the incident, according to a Wednesday court filing.

  • May 15, 2024

    Startup Consultant Hits Hemp Co. With $2.1M Fee Suit

    A consulting firm focused on helping startup companies raise capital is taking an industrial hemp firm, its owners and a guest lecturer at the University of Michigan's business school to Ohio federal court over $2.1 million in consulting fees it says it never got to collect.

  • May 15, 2024

    Hemp Co. Settles Sales Dispute With Fla. Regulators

    The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services has inked a deal with a hemp-product maker that accused the agency of overstepping its bounds and using stop-sale orders to block it from selling its hemp products outside the state.

  • May 14, 2024

    Cannabis Co., Wrigley Heir Settle $7M Investor Suit

    An investor that sank $7.4 million into cannabis operator Parallel has settled its suit with the company and its former CEO and heir to the Wrigley chewing gum fortune, according to a mediation report filed in Florida federal court.

  • May 14, 2024

    Cos. Ask NY Court To Invalidate 100s Of Pot Licenses

    New York state's beleaguered cannabis oversight agency has been hit with another lawsuit, this one seeking to invalidate hundreds of retail licenses that regulators issued to those most directly affected by the enforcement of marijuana prohibition laws.

  • May 14, 2024

    Mass. Pot Shop Ordered To Recognize Union, Rehire Workers

    A Massachusetts cannabis retailer found to have engaged in union busting must recognize and bargain with a United Food and Commercial Workers local and offer to rehire two fired union supporters, a federal judge ordered Tuesday.

  • May 14, 2024

    California Pot Worker's Suit Alleges Slurs, Unpaid Overtime

    A former worker for a cannabis cultivator and distributor is suing his former employer in California state court, saying he was fired in retaliation for reporting a work environment rife with racial discrimination.

  • May 13, 2024

    US Tells DC Circ. Ayahuasca Church's Settlement Inapt

    Federal regulators are telling the D.C. Circuit to ignore a recent settlement that will allow a Phoenix-based church to continue using ayahuasca in its ceremonies, saying it has nothing to do with the Iowa-based ayahuasca church challenging the IRS's refusal to give it tax-exempt status.

  • May 13, 2024

    Alaska House Passes Bill To Levy 7% Marijuana Retail Tax

    Alaska would update its marijuana tax regime by levying a 7% tax on sales and phasing out the current $50 per ounce excise tax as part of a bill passed by the state House of Representatives.

  • May 13, 2024

    Medical Pot Patient Drops Discrimination Suit Against US Steel

    A former U.S. Steel Corp. employee who says he was wrongly fired for using medically licensed marijuana off the job has quietly dropped his race and disability discrimination suit against the company, according to a filing in Pennsylvania federal court.

  • May 10, 2024

    NY Gov. Orders Shakeup Of Cannabis Regulatory Agency

    New York Gov. Kathy Hochul on Friday announced an overhaul of the state's embattled cannabis regulatory agency, unveiling an investigative audit that showed how "inexperienced" leaders "wasted valuable time and resources," and then declaring $5 million in one-time grants would be awarded to a select group of applicants who took a financial hit by the licensing delays.

  • May 10, 2024

    Texas Man Gambled Away Hemp Biz Investments, SEC Claims

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has filed suit in Colorado against a Texas man and his purported hemp industry investment businesses, alleging he spent over half of nearly $1.3 million raised from investors over three years on sustaining a lifestyle involving full-time gambling.

  • May 10, 2024

    NJ State Police Settle Suit Over Expungements Backlog

    The New Jersey State Police agreed to speed up the processing of expungements to resolve the Office of the Public Defender's proposed class claims over a backlog of judicial orders that numbered 46,000 as of October, Attorney General Matt Platkin and Public Defender Jennifer N. Sellitti said in a joint statement Friday. 

  • May 10, 2024

    Tobacco Wholesaler Must Post $1.4M Bond Pending IP Appeal

    A cigarette rolling paper wholesaler must post a more than $1.4 million bond while the company appeals its portion of a larger $2.3 million verdict for selling counterfeit papers, a Georgia federal judge has ruled.

  • May 09, 2024

    Skadden-Led Firm Nets $250M In May's Second SPAC Listing

    GP-Act III Acquisition Corp., a Skadden-led special-purpose acquisition company backed by multiple private investment firms, began trading on Thursday after completing a $250 million initial public offering, marking the second SPAC listing this month in an otherwise battered market.

  • May 09, 2024

    Judge Halts DEA's Hearing On Proposed Psychedelics Ban

    An administrative law judge with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration has ordered the agency to cancel a June 10 hearing on its proposal to ban two psychedelic substances while a researcher's federal lawsuit challenging the agency's actions plays out in court, according to an order made public Thursday.

  • May 09, 2024

    Man Says LG Chem Can't Duck NC Courts In Battery Suit

    A man suing South Korea-based LG Chem Ltd. over an exploding lithium-ion battery is urging a North Carolina federal district court to find that it has jurisdiction over the company, saying LG has sufficient ties to the state through its marketing and selling of the batteries, even if it doesn't sell directly to customers.

  • May 09, 2024

    4th Circ. Mulls Scope Of Farm Bill In Virginia Hemp Fight

    A Fourth Circuit panel on Thursday pushed attorneys for the state of Virginia and a group of hemp companies and customers to define precisely how much power states have to restrict the production and sale of intoxicating products derived from federally legal hemp.

Expert Analysis

  • Series

    Being An Equestrian Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    Beyond getting experience thinking on my feet and tackling stressful situations, the skills I've gained from horseback riding have considerable overlap with the skills used to practice law, particularly in terms of team building, continuing education, and making an effort to reset and recharge, says Kerry Irwin at Moore & Van Allen.

  • 4 Ways To Refresh Your Law Firm's Marketing Strategy

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    With many BigLaw firms relying on an increasingly obsolete marketing approach that prioritizes stiff professionalism over authentic connection, adopting a few key communications strategies to better connect with today's clients and prospects can make all the difference, say Eric Pacifici and Kevin Henderson at SMB Law.

  • Series

    Whitewater Kayaking Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    Whether it's seeing clients and their issues from a new perspective, or staying nimble in a moment of intense challenge, the lessons learned from whitewater kayaking transcend the rapids of a river and prepare attorneys for the courtroom and beyond, says Matthew Kent at Alston & Bird.

  • Cannabis Ruling Lights Path For Bankruptcy Protection

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    A recent Massachusetts bankruptcy appellate court ruling in Blumsack v. Harrington leaves the door open for those employed in the cannabis industry to seek bankruptcy relief where certain conditions are met, but rescheduling marijuana as a Schedule III drug may complicate matters, say Jane Haviland and Kathryn Droumbakis at Mintz.

  • This Earth Day, Consider How Your Firm Can Go Greener

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    As Earth Day approaches, law firms and attorneys should consider adopting more sustainable practices to reduce their carbon footprint — from minimizing single-use plastics to purchasing carbon offsets for air travel — which ultimately can also reduce costs for clients, say M’Lynn Phillips and Lisa Walters at IMS Legal Strategies.

  • Practicing Law With Parkinson's Disease

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    This Parkinson’s Awareness Month, Adam Siegler at Greenberg Traurig discusses his experience working as a lawyer with Parkinson’s disease, sharing both lessons on how to cope with a diagnosis and advice for supporting colleagues who live with the disease.

  • Series

    Playing Hockey Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    Nearly a lifetime of playing hockey taught me the importance of avoiding burnout in all aspects of life, and the game ultimately ended up providing me with the balance I needed to maintain success in my legal career, says John Riccione at Taft.

  • Considerations For Evaluating IP Risks In Cannabis M&A

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    Due to the patchwork of state cannabis laws in the U.S., investors and businesses acquiring intellectual property must assess whether a trademark portfolio possesses any vulnerabilities, such as marks that are considered attractive to children or third-party claims of trademark infringement, say Mary Shapiro and Nicole Katsin at Evoke Law.

  • 9th Circ. TM Ruling Expands Courts' Role In Application Cases

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    The Ninth Circuit’s recent ruling in BBK Tobacco v. Central Coast Agriculture is the first time a federal appeals court has explicitly authorized district courts to adjudicate pending trademark applications, marking a potentially significant expansion of federal courts' power, says Saul Cohen at Kelly IP.

  • For Lawyers, Pessimism Should Be A Job Skill, Not A Life Skill

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    A pessimistic mindset allows attorneys to be effective advocates for their clients, but it can come with serious costs for their personal well-being, so it’s crucial to exercise strategies that produce flexible optimism and connect lawyers with their core values, says Krista Larson at Stinson.

  • Opinion

    Requiring Leave To File Amicus Briefs Is A Bad Idea

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    A proposal to amend the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure that would require parties to get court permission before filing federal amicus briefs would eliminate the long-standing practice of consent filing and thereby make the process less open and democratic, says Lawrence Ebner at the Atlantic Legal Foundation and DRI Center.

  • 4 Ways To Motivate Junior Attorneys To Bring Their Best

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    As Gen Z and younger millennial attorneys increasingly express dissatisfaction with their work and head for the exits, the lawyers who manage them must understand and attend to their needs and priorities to boost engagement and increase retention, says Stacey Schwartz at Katten.

  • 3 Health Insurance Paths For Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy

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    Ahead of potential U.S. Food and Drug Administration approvals for psychedelics as insured treatments, attorneys at Husch Blackwell review pathways for these drugs to achieve coverage as treatments for complex mental health conditions.

  • Series

    Serving As A Sheriff's Deputy Made Me A Better Lawyer

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    Skills developed during my work as a reserve deputy — where there was a need to always be prepared, decisive and articulate — transferred to my practice as an intellectual property litigator, and my experience taught me that clients often appreciate and relate to the desire to participate in extracurricular activities, says Michael Friedland at Friedland Cianfrani.

  • Fears About The End Of Chevron Deference Are Overblown

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    While some are concerned about repercussions if the U.S. Supreme Court brings an end to Chevron deference in the Loper and Relentless cases this term, agencies and attorneys would survive just fine under the doctrines that have already begun to replace it, say Daniel Wolff and Henry Leung at Crowell & Moring.

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