Cannabis Business Law Initiative

Cannabis Business Law Initiative

Medical marijuana is now legal in 34 states and California is among the 11 states where recreational cannabis is legal, although the substance remains illegal at the federal level.  The contradictory status of cannabis at the state and federal level has created novel legal, regulatory and policy issues that continue to unfold.  Through the creation of its Cannabis Business Law Initiative, Loyola Law School will be a thought leader in the greater Los Angeles area as lawyers navigate an increasingly complex financial, legal and regulatory landscape for cannabis-related businesses operating in California.

Under the leadership of Professor Therese Maynard and Adjunct Professor Richard Ormond, Loyola Law hosted its first annual Cannabis Business Law Conference on October 25, 2019, thereby establishing Loyola Law as a thought leader in a new and rapidly growing area of practice for transactional lawyers.  John Chiang, the former California State Treasurer, was the keynote speaker, providing a thought-provoking perspective on the legal and regulatory landscape for cannabis-related businesses.

The purpose of the Conference was to address the myriad legal and regulatory issues that lawyers and financial advisors must be prepared to deal with when representing businesses operating within the cannabis industry in California.  The three afternoon panels featured speakers who are experts in the financing, banking, tax, accounting, corporate governance and valuation issues that lawyers must grapple with in this heavily regulated industry.  For a complete description of the Conference’s program, the roster of speakers and presentation materials, visit here.

Loyola Law recognizes that the demand for legal services in the cannabis industry is growing and the legal and regulatory issues in the area of cannabis law are complex and evolving at a rapid pace.  Loyola Law is committed to hosting future conferences that bring together regulators, legislators, academics as well as practicing lawyers to address the cutting-edge issues facing California’s expanding cannabis industry.

In keeping with its commitment to be a thought leader in the emerging area of practicing as a transactional lawyer representing cannabis-related businesses, Loyola Law will offer a Cannabis Law course for the first time in spring 2020. This new course will be taught by Adjunct Professor Richard Ormond, a partner at Buchalter and founder of the firm’s cannabis law practice group who has a wealth of experience grappling with the numerous issues that face lawyers representing cannabis-related businesses in California. The goal of this new course is to provide Loyola students with a solid understanding of the current framework of laws and regulations (at both the federal and state level) that California lawyers must be familiar with in representing various types of business interests operating in the cannabis industry.  In addition, the course will highlight for Loyola students the ethical issues and professional responsibility concerns that face transactional business lawyers practicing in this area of the law since cannabis remains illegal at the federal level.