What Inconsistent Federal Policy Means for Marijuana Business Owners: Washington's I-502 and the Federal Controlled Substances Act
GULR (2014/15) 50-3, 305-335.
32 Pages Posted: 14 Apr 2017 Last revised: 7 Aug 2020
Date Written: February 14, 2015
Under current federal law marijuana is still a Schedule I substance which is causing a variety of legal problems for marijuana business owners in states that have recently enacted laws permitting the sale of marijuana for recreational purposes. Because Schedule I labels marijuana as a dangerous addictive drug with no medical uses under federal law, business owners are dealing with numerous challenges relating to banking and taxes in relation to their marijuana dispensaries with the potential threat of federal criminal action. The article first discusses the history of state marijuana laws, Washington State’s policy on marijuana, federal law and enforcement of marijuana laws, and concludes with how federal marijuana policy is impacting businesses in states that have legalized certain uses of marijuana.
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