• Marijuana DUI Defense and Drug Charges
  • Advocating for Collectives, Growers
    and Patients Rights
  • Our Attorneys can Help you find a Location
    and Incorporate your Collective
  • Fighting to keep our Client’s Collectives
    Open Through Affordable Litigation
  • criminal defense: marijuana possession,
    sales & cultivation charges

California cannabis lawyersThe legalization of recreational marijuana in California on November 9, 2016, brought a host of unexpected questions for the commercial cannabis industry. Municipal and county ordinances have created a confusing web of compliance requirements for marijuana cultivators, distributors, and dispensaries. And in some limited areas, marijuana is simply banned altogether.

County supervisors in San Luis Obispo County are considering a package of commercial cannabis regulations. Among other things, the drafted regulations prohibit the growth of marijuana in areas zoned as residential-suburban. The Tribune reports that this would include the California Valley and the entire Carrizo Plain. Limited groundwater and a high concentration of endangered species (the largest concentration in the lower forty-eight states, according to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife) are reasons given by opponents in support of banning marijuana growth in the Carrizo Plain. This does not, however, give cause for banning marijuana grows in all other residential-suburban areas of San Luis Obispo County.  

Continue reading

The Adult Use of Marijuana Act ensured that the State of California would begin issuing cannabis business licenses no later than January 1, 2018. The state is working feverishly to meet this deadline. Nevertheless, it is a massive undertaking which will require the coordination of hundred of employees at dozens of state agencies. These include: the Bureau of Medical Cannabis Regulation within the Department of Consumer Affairs; CalCannabis within the Department of Food and Agriculture; the Office of Medical Cannabis Regulation within the Department of Public Health; and the California Department of Technology.

cannabis business lawyer

While it remains to be seen exactly when cannabis business licenses are issued, the state has taken an important step toward implementing an efficient licensing system. Government Technology reports that the state has selected software from Accela, Inc. to manage licensing for the cannabis industry. State Chief Information Officer Amy Tong says the software was chosen due to a competitive price quote, ease and flexibility of use, and its successful history within the industry and other state licensing entities. While this successful history does bode well for cannabis business licensing, it is, of course, no guarantee of success in meeting the state’s January 1 deadline.  Continue reading

As of November 2016, recreational marijuana use is legal within the state of California. As Californians have begun to enjoy the benefits of this law, they are learning a hard lesson: federal law enforcement can trump state law, even within state borders. cannabis defense attorneys

The conflict between state and federal law is apparent in many aspects of California life. Cannabis businesses cannot bank in federal institutions, because their finds are considered illegal drug money. Federal employment is usually unavailable to Californians who use marijuana (whether recreationally or medicinally). And in perhaps the most confusing of all restrictions, marijuana use is illegal on federal lands within state borders. Continue reading

Humans are not the only ones to benefit from California’s legalization of recreational marijuana. Pets, too, can receive medical benefits from marijuana. National Public Radio reports on the anti-anxiety effects of marijuana products that are designed for use by pets. Such products produced noticeable benefits for dogs that were agitated by fireworks. (Shelters see an increase in activity around the Fourth of July and New Year’s Eve, due to pets who run away after being frightened by fireworks.)

While marijuana products and derivatives can help soothe pets, they can also subject an owner to criminal liability for possession. Continue reading

The legalization of recreational marijuana in California has created a revolution within the cannabis business sector. As cannabis business owners prepare to adapt to the regulatory and financial overhaul of an entire industry, many are looking to the craft wine sector as a model of profitability in a highly regulated industry. Some ambitious entrepreneurs are even looking to combine the two in a potent combination of craft pairings. cannabis business lawyers

The Craft Strategy

The overhaul of the cannabis industry in California is an expensive proposition, and many owners of smaller cannabis businesses simply do not have the resources to adapt their business model to new regulations. They are addressing this problem in many different ways. Some small farm owners are banding together to form marijuana co-ops, which will help all participants adapt to the changing industry. Others are borrowing the business model of the craft wine industry: by focusing on a specialized product which commands a premium in the marketplace, their profit margins increase dramatically.

Leafly reports on the case study of one Sonoma County grower who has eschewed the mass market strategy with great success. Sam Edwards grows loose, airy buds that have little value on the flower market, but are “absolutely great for extracts”. Indeed, his vape cartridges command a premium of nearly double the price of other cartridges. Edwards himself worked in the wine industry, and it was there that he learned this business strategy. By developing a high-end specialty product with local character, niche wineries were able to compete with large, mass-production wine companies. Edwards does the same to compete with mass market cannabis growers.     Continue reading

Most Californians are aware that recreational marijuana use was legalized in November 2016. What is less well known is that Proposition 64 (the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act, or “the Act”) also carried sentencing provisions, which eliminated penalties for minor marijuana offenses, and reduced penalties for more serious offenses such as selling or cultivating marijuana. More importantly, these provisions are retroactive. This has allowed many incarcerated Californians to file petitions under the Act and seek immediate release. Hundreds of inmates have achieved such release since the law took effect.  cannabis conviction attorneys

The Effects of Proposition 64

The Huffington Post reports that close to one million people in California qualify for relief under Proposition 64. This can include: reducing a felony conviction to a misdemeanor; terminating a sentence of probation or incarceration, expunging criminal records, or dismissing a pending case. The terms of Proposition 64 created a new law (California Health and Safety Code §11361.8) by which to facilitate the process of applying for relief.

Retroactive application of a sentencing law is unusual in and of itself, but §11361.8 is even more striking, in that it does not place a time limit on which the conviction must have occurred. Any person currently serving a sentence may apply for relief if he or she would not have been guilty – or been guilty of a lesser offense – had the Act been in affect at the time of the offense. Moreover, California courts are instructed to broadly grant petitions for relief. In order to deny such a petition, the court must determine that an unreasonable risk of danger to public safety would be posed by granting it. This creates a de facto legal presumption that qualified applicants are entitled to have their petitions for relief under the Act granted. This presumption can be challenged (and overcome) by a prosecutor, but it is still an advantage for defendants seeking relief from their sentences for marijuana offenses. Continue reading

The legalization of recreational marijuana use in California has presented many lucrative business opportunities within the cannabis industry. The Hill reports that Washington and Colorado surpassed one billion dollars in annual sales of marijuana in 2017 after legalizing its recreational use. California, by contrast, brought in two billion dollars of sales of medical marijuana in 2016. Cannabis business in California is projected to bring in five billion dollars in annual sales once the business provisions of the Adult Use of Marijuana Act take full effect in 2018.

cannabis business lawyers

Like any new business venture, however, new opportunities bring new challenges and expenses. For cannabis businesses which are prepared to manage these expenses, the opportunities can bring lasting cash flow to a growing industry. Continue reading

Marijuana has created a confusing legal vortex for the enforcement of impaired driving laws. In contrast to alcohol, there is no set blood level at which a driver is legally impaired by marijuana. California’s new recreational marijuana law also makes it more difficult for an officer to determine whether a driver has exceeded the allowable limit of marijuana for personal use. Finally, federal law makes the transportation of any amount of marijuana a federal crime. While the Department of Justice has not, historically, expended funds for the prosecution of defendants who were following state law, this is a policy choice which is subject to change with each new administration. cannabis DUI lawyers

The Preliminary Determinations in a DUI Investigation

Before determining if a driver is impaired, law enforcement officers must first determine whether the driver has a legal right to possess or consume marijuana at all. Prior to November 9, 2016, California drivers could only do so by the possession of a valid medical marijuana card. Now – with the legalization of recreational marijuana – any person in California may possess up to one ounce of marijuana or six plants. An officer who pulls over a California driver on suspicion of DUI must therefore first determine: (a) if there is marijuana in the vehicle, and (b) whether it exceeds the legal limit.

While Californians may have a right to possess marijuana, it is still illegal to drive with an open container of marijuana in the vehicle. According to the Sacramento Bee, this applies to any receptacles or marijuana products that are open, have previously been opened, or have a broken seal. Continue reading

With all the talk about legalization of marijuana for recreational use for adults in California, many are wondering what will happen to the medical marijuana market.  One thing that is certain is that medical marijuana patients will still be able to get their much-needed medicine.

marijuana deliveryThere is a good chance they will still be able to get it from the same dispensaries they have been going to because of the fact that colocation will be legal in most places.  This means that the same dispensaries that are already in existence will be able to also sell marijuana for recreational use. Continue reading

One of the issues that faces those who want to smoke pot in their apartments is that even though it will be legal to do so, it may be a violation of your lease. A recent news article from NBC 4 Los Angeles takes a closer look at this issue.

medical marijuana When Proposition 64 was drafted, it was done in such a way that would appease many of the opponents of legal use of recreational marijuana for adults.  This is because while it was not as liberal as they would prefer, if was to pass, there would have to be some major concessions, so that is what happened.   While the law did get passed at the ballot and will go into effect on January 1, 2018, there are still some issues that may cause hardship to those who wish to smoke marijuana in their homes. Continue reading