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The cannabis industry continues to expand and evolve, achieving many milestones as one of the fastest-growing markets in the states where the cultivation, distribution, possession, and use of cannabis for either medicinal or recreational adult use has been legalized under state law. While these activities remain illegal on a federal level, many experts in the industry anticipate the continued prevalence of cannabis-infused products in the market.

Given the rapid growth of the cannabis industry and the diverging federal and state laws regarding the use of cannabis, clients benefit from cannabis lawyers with a sophisticated understanding of the nuances of these laws who can help them navigate the economic, regulatory, and operational challenges facing the cannabis industry.

As a full-service law firm with offices across the United States and in Canada, Dickinson Wright advocates for clients in the cannabis industry, representing those operating with state-issued licenses as well as businesses providing goods and services to the industry. Our legal team can help you navigate the constantly changing state and federal legal landscape surrounding this market.

Our Clients

From Fortune 500 companies to small and emerging businesses to corporations with a national presence to nonprofits and individuals, every client is important to us. Our cannabis lawyers provide personalized legal assistance for a variety of clients in the cannabis industry, including cultivators, dispensaries, processors, operators, healthcare providers, investors, banks, and beyond.

Our Team

Our cannabis lawyers are proactive and accessible, providing practical solutions and actionable advice. Our cannabis team always stays at the forefront of new and changing laws within the industry to provide our clients with the best advice throughout a changing legal landscape. With our guidance, clients are able to pursue their specific targeted business objectives while avoiding unnecessary legal and business risks.

Comprehensive service and deep industry knowledge need not be expensive. Our size and depth of experience, together with our lean operating model, allow us to provide efficient and comprehensive legal services to clients of all sizes. Our team works with each client to design a pricing plan that delivers both predictability and maximum value.

Our Services

Doing business in the cannabis industry involves more than the simple analysis of the legal issues surrounding the product itself. Like businesses in any industry, entrants into this market benefit from assistance with corporate, financing, real estate, employment, lobbying, and intellectual property needs crucial to their operations.

Taking into account your goals, your business model, and your unique product offerings, our team of experienced lawyers will develop customized solutions to legal issues both unique to the cannabis industry and common to all businesses. Our services include the following:

• Licensing application and legal review to grow, process, or dispense cannabis
• State, local, and federal regulatory compliance
• Corporate formation and restructuring
• Supplier and distributor business counseling
• Manufacturing, sale, and licensing of processing equipment
• Negotiating transactional and other commercial contracts, including property and equipment purchases and leases
• Domestic and cross-border financing and merger and acquisition transactions
• Real estate transactions
• Filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and other agencies
• Taxation matters including 280E mitigation strategies
• Labor and employment matters, including workplace policies, non-compete, trade secrets, and litigation
• Securing intellectual property and trademark protection, including product label approvals

Representative Matters

• Retained by a large medical cannabis cultivation operation regarding an administrative hearing which granted the client a provisional license.

• Engaged by a cannabis cultivator, processor, and dispensary operator licensed in 23 states for assistance with state legislative and regulatory affairs.

• Handling a variety of projects for a bank, ranging from the preparation of a convertible note offering for a company with whom the bank consults to fundraising for a food and cannabis testing product that provides a rapid test for food purity and cannabis consistency.

• Represented a licensed dispensary and processor of medical marijuana in a series of transactions with a leading cannabis operator involving the client’s large scale cultivation and processing licenses in a number of matters, including purchasing an option to acquire the licenses subject to regulatory approval; facility build-out; lease agreements; and consulting agreements for operational assistance.

• Represented a vertically integrated medical marijuana operator in the financing deal to construct and operate state licensed cannabis processing and cultivation operations.

• Represented a company that provides support services to state-compliant licensed cannabis operators in acquiring a cannabis dispensary.

• Represented investors in negotiation of a joint venture opportunity for pursuit of state cultivation licenses.

• Assisted company with private placement offering for pursuit of cultivation, processing, and retail licenses nationwide.

• Counseled client on trademark applications filed with U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

• Provided lobbying support on behalf of an investor’s pursuit of a state-wide ballot initiative

• Corporate formation and advice on 280E tax impact for licensed dispensary.

• Prepared and supported client state and local applications for pursuit of cultivation, processing, and retail licenses and relocation of facilities.

• Drafted license and wholesale distribution agreements for the licensing of alternative cannabis delivery systems.

• Represented clients in litigation matters involving complex issues respecting corporate structure and revenue allocation and issues related to state and local licensure.

• Assisted client in securing eight licenses in new medical cannabis market for vertically integrated operation.

• Won an appeal for a recreational cannabis dispensary.

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