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California Bar Committee Opines that Attorneys Can Ethically Represent Cannabis Clients

The California State Bar’s Regulation and Discipline Committee has just released an ethics opinion that attorneys working for cannabis industry clients have long awaited. The opinion, Formal Opinion 2020-202, provides much needed clarification to attorneys and clients around the propriety and limitations of cannabis-related legal representation. Formal Opinion 2020-202 provides valuable cover for attorneys engaged in such representation. California has legalized cannabis for commercial use and has even decreed through statute that any contract entered into for the purpose of facilitating state-legal cannabis business—presumably including attorney-client engagement agreements—are lawful contr

Coronavirus and SAFE Transactions

Earlier this week, Democrats in the House of Representatives unveiled the Helping Emergency Responders Overcome Emergency Situations Act, or HEROS Act, their proposed follow-up to the CARES Act that provided a range of financial relief to individuals and businesses coping with the harsh realities of the COVID-19 crisis. In one of the most significant legislative developments to date for cannabis legalization at the federal level to date, the substance of the SAFE Banking Act is included in the original HEROS Act bill text. The SAFE Banking Act would provide legal protections to banks, insurance companies, and other financial institutions such that they can serve state-legal cannabis business

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