The production and sale of legal cannabis is big business by any standard. The market sales value in the United States is projected to be $33.6 billion by the end of 2023 with recreational market sales representing $22.5 billion of that amount. Even more astounding, there is an expected annual growth rate of 25.5% with sales upwards of $42.8 billion for the recreational market alone by 2028. For hemp and CBD products, the figures are $4.9 billion with a growth of 21.3%.
New York is a massive market that is expected to have equally explosive growth in legal cannabis sales over the next several years. Since 2015, Woods Lonergan has built a reputation as a trusted new york cannabis attorney for businesses and individuals involved in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry. Our skilled team of cannabis law attorneys is dedicated to providing expert legal representation to clients across the entire cannabis supply chain. This includes state-licensed adult-use marijuana, medical marijuana, and hemp cultivators, processors, distributors, and dispensaries. Our clientele encompasses both vertically integrated operations and standalone businesses, as well as investors contributing to the industry’s growth. Woods Lonergan provides legal services to a wide range of vendors that supply vital products and services to the cannabis sector, such as raw materials, technology solutions, consumption products, and security services. These vendors include providers of raw materials, technology solutions, consumption products, and security services.
Our Cannabis Team Has a Deep Understanding of the Legal Cannabis Industry and What Makes It Unique.
We bring commercial insight combined with strategic advice across the cannabis, hemp and CBD supply chain: product development, licensing, distribution, sales, marketing and advertising, and everything in between. Our experience covers business-critical areas such as regulatory compliance, mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property, class action litigation, and corporate counsel.
In addition to our work with cannabis-related businesses, we have advised a wide variety of non-cannabis companies, including traditional consumer goods companies, real estate developers, insurance companies, broker-dealers, and private equity funds. Our goal is to help these companies evaluate the regulatory and business considerations pertinent to entering the cannabis space.
Our Cannabis Law practice group applies their comprehensive, hands-on knowledge to advise clients based in New York, New Jersey, and Oregon on the federal, state, and local laws, regulations, and governmental guidance relevant to conducting business and investing in cannabis. This includes the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (also known as the 2018 Farm Bill), Bank Secrecy Act, anti-money laundering (AML) statutes, and the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, as well as the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Department of Agriculture (USDA), and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations and guidance, and state-specific marijuana and hemp regulations.
We assist our cannabis-related Clients with a Wide range of services, including:
Licenses to grow, process, or dispense adult-use marijuana, medical marijuana, and hemp; assessment of business and individual risks under federal and state cannabis-related laws, regulations, and guidance; administrative matters pertaining to licensure. Our Cannabis Law team is committed to staying abreast of the most recent legal developments, industry standards, and regulatory requirements to ensure our clients receive the highest quality legal counsel in this dynamic field.
Being a team of seasoned attorneys, including some that possess intimate knowledge of the industry, Woods Lonergan is able to provide our clients a decisive competitive advantage relating to their litigation, arbitration, mediation or administrative needs. Civil matters, such as breach of commercial contracts, fraud/misrepresentation, partnership/shareholder disputes, trademark and patent infringement, employment claims, and challenges to state licensure programs.
Corporate Services for the Cannabis Industry:
- Corporate Formation and Structure: We assist clients in establishing the most appropriate legal structure for their cannabis business, addressing complexities resulting from state-specific statutes and the conflict between federal and state laws. We help clients navigate entity formation, shareholder agreements, bylaws, and operating agreements tailored to the unique needs of the cannabis industry.
- Mergers and Acquisitions: We guide clients through every stage of the M&A process, including due diligence, negotiation, and documentation of transactions in the cannabis sector, while considering the unique regulatory landscape and potential risks.
- Partnership and Operating Agreements: We draft and review partnership and operating agreements for cannabis businesses, ensuring that they address industry-specific concerns, such as licensing requirements, regulatory compliance, and dispute resolution.
- Domestic and Cross-Border Financing and M&A Transactions: We represent cannabis clients in domestic and international financing and merger and acquisition transactions, ensuring compliance with applicable laws and regulations while maximizing value for our clients.
Intellectual Property Protection in the Cannabis Industry:
- Trademarks: Our team helps clients protect their intellectual property by securing trademarks for their cannabis products, services, and technologies, as well as advising on infringement matters.
- Licensing Agreements: We negotiate and draft licensing agreements for cannabis businesses, addressing unique industry concerns such as regulatory compliance, product quality, and liability issues.
Real Estate and Construction Services for Cannabis Businesses:
- Zoning and Land Use: We help clients navigate zoning, water rights, and land use regulations specific to the cannabis industry, ensuring that their business operations are in compliance with local, state, and federal laws.
- Leasing and Landlord/Tenant Matters: We represent both landlords and tenants in lease negotiations and disputes, addressing cannabis-specific issues such as permitted uses, compliance with regulations, and potential liability concerns.
- Civil Forfeiture Risk: We counsel clients on minimizing the risk of civil forfeiture related to cannabis property, helping them understand and mitigate potential legal exposure.
Labor and Employment Services for the Cannabis Industry:
- Workplace Procedures: We provide comprehensive workplace procedures for cannabis businesses, focusing on industry-specific regulations, compliance, and best practices.
- Non-Compete and Trade Secrets: We assist clients in drafting and enforcing non-compete and trade secret agreements, helping to protect their valuable intellectual property and competitive advantage in the cannabis industry.
- Executive Employment Agreements and Severance Agreements: Our team advises on and drafts executive employment and severance agreements for cannabis businesses, addressing unique industry concerns such as regulatory compliance, licensing requirements, and potential liability issues.
Bankruptcy Services for Cannabis Businesses:
We counsel clients on bankruptcy issues specific to the cannabis industry, navigating the complex interplay between federal and state laws, and advising on strategies to protect assets and mitigate risk.
Information Technology and Management Software for the Cannabis Industry:
We advise clients on information technology and management software solutions tailored to the cannabis industry, ensuring compliance with data privacy regulations, and addressing the unique needs of cannabis businesses in areas such as inventory management, sales tracking, and regulatory reporting.
Woods Lonergan’s Commitment to the Cannabis Industry
The market for cannabis, hemp, and CBD products continues to grow and evolve fast. Woods Lonergan’s deep understanding and unique expertise in the cannabis space are best reflected by our representation of clients through all segments of the business arena. Our New York City cannabis attorneys are at the forefront of this industry, supplying clients with the latest information and developments in the law. Our clients benefit from our multifaceted, multidisciplinary legal services across regulatory, transactional, and litigation matters – an approach that balances risk mitigation with commercial success. Contact us today if you have a legal question or to learn more about how our experienced team can assist and advise your cannabis venture.