A Trap for the Unwary: Cannabis Health Claims Likely to Draw Scrutiny from Advertising Regulators

With the opening of the East Coast’s first marijuana retailer just days away, consumers in Massachusetts may soon begin seeing advertisements promoting all manner of cannabis products, services, and establishments.  The state’s Cannabis Control Commission has drafted regulationsthat place restrictions on marijuana advertising, but even with those restrictions, there is still plenty of opportunity for retailers and product manufacturers to promote cannabis to consumers, particularly online and on mobile apps,… More

Cannabis Control Commission: Fall 2018 Update

With July 1st now fully in the rear-view mirror, we thought it would be a good time to update you on the latest developments at the Cannabis Control Commission.  Earlier this month, the Commission approved two final retail licences for businesses in Northampton and Leicester.  These represent the very first final adult-use retail licenses awarded in the Commonwealth.  With this, Massachusetts residents should expect adult-use retail shops to open to the public within a matter of weeks. … More

Massachusetts Banks Open to Serving Recreational Cannabis Companies

GFA Federal Credit Union, a Massachusetts credit union with headquarters in Gardner, will become the first financial institution in the Commonwealth to serve the recreational cannabis industry by offering banking services to cannabis companies.  This represents a major step forward for companies in the Commonwealth’s burgeoning recreational cannabis industry, as previously most companies resorted to running cash-only operations without being able to offer customers the benefits of credit or debit purchases. … More

CCC Draft Medical Regulations Released

Last week, the CCC released two new sets of draft medical marijuana regulations so that final regulations can be promulgated in enough time for it to take over the Commonwealth’s Medical Marijuana Program by the end of the year.

The CCC released a draft of 935 CMR 501, which it calls a “lift and replace” of the existing Department of Public Health medical marijuana regulations.… More

Crimson Galeria v. Healthy Pharms: update in commercial cannabis lawsuit

A recent decision in a closely-watched commercial cannabis case opens the possibility for increased commercial activity in the nascent recreational cannabis market in Massachusetts.  On August 21, Judge Burroughs of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts issued a memorandum and order on motions to dismiss in Crimson Galeria Limited Partnership, et al. v. Healthy Pharms, Inc., et al, granting a victory for the named government defendants (Massachusetts Department of Public Health,… More

Cannabis Business Times Discusses Adult-Use Licenses with Attorney Jesse Alderman

Attorney Jesse Alderman speaks to Cannabis Business Times about municipalities’ Host Community Agreements and offers tips on scoring an adult-use license.

“The cities and towns hold so much power in deciding when and to whom to give these Host Community Agreements,” he says. “The whole ballgame is at the municipal level in Massachusetts as I see it.”

Click here to read the full article.… More

Enforcing Federal Cannabis Laws: Summer 2018 Update

With July 1st in the rear-view mirror and provisional licenses spreading throughout the Commonwealth, we thought now would be a good time for an update on the status of federal law enforcement’s unenviable task of enforcing the federal prohibition against marijuana in a state that has decriminalized the drug.  First a quick history lesson: recall that in 2013, the Obama administration released the Cole memorandum, a document meant to provide guidance to federal law enforcement in those state jurisdictions that had decriminalized marijuana. … More

Partner Kevin Conroy Featured in Banker & Tradesman In Person

Banker & Tradesman interviewed partner Kevin Conroy about the relationship between financial institutions and the marijuana industry. Click here to read on Scribd.

Reprinted with permission from July 23, 2018

Cannabis Control Commission Update: Retail Licenses

Although the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission has begun awarding provisional, adult-use licenses to some entities in the Commonwealth as of July 1, only one retail license has been awarded and, to date, no retail stores have yet opened for business.  One large impediment to opening retail stores is the statutory requirement that all cannabis sold in the Commonwealth for adult use be tested by an independent testing laboratory, which itself must be licensed as such by the Commission. … More

How to Protect Your Trademarks When You Can’t Protect Your Trademarks

This article was published first in Cannabis Industry Journal

While the USPTO might not register your trademark, there are still some tools available to protect your intellectual property.

Federal trademark registrations are invaluable tools for emerging businesses. They put the world on notice of a company’s name; they can secure nationwide priority over others using similar names; they distinguish a product in the marketplace;… More