In this series, HK Cannabis Law will focus on culling through a plethora of news, industry, and government, sources throughout California and the United States to bring you the most important news in the cannabis and cannabis related industries. Many of the stories in these articles will relate specifically to regulatory matters and licensing, while others will simply be informative and, hopefully, interesting. Some stories will relate to best practices in specific counties and cities, while others will relate to national or global trends. This first newsletter includes stories regarding a recent California State Supreme Court ruling, intellectual property, and some speculation with respect to why the online dispensary reference “Weedmaps” might be getting out of the business of advertising unlicensed operators.
The California State Supreme Court ruled recently that San Diego didn’t properly analyze the environmental impact of its own dispensary laws. Although the full extent of the ruling’s effect is not clear, it stands to slow expansion and increase costs.
Intellectual property theft is a problem for legal operators. The dearth of unlicensed operators in California is a huge problem, but perhaps increased efforts to prosecute these illegal actors presents an opportunity for licensed operators to fight back against such attacks. This also underscores the need for federal legalization since the most important intellectual property protections are at the federal level.
Interesting: Weedmaps is connected to wholesale cannabis logistics and distribution business in West Sacramento. It will be interesting to see if its prior willingness to advertise unlicensed operators will impact its ability to get an annual license. This may explain why they decided to stop advertising unlicensed companies.
Here are some interesting tips (page 98-99) for helping a cannabis company restructure debt in lieu of bankruptcy since, with cannabis still illegal at the federal level, bankruptcy is not an option. Note, however, that bankruptcy is still available for ancillary businesses (page 102).