On Election Day 2016, seventy-one percent of Florida’s voters approved expanding the use of medical marijuana to treat a variety of medical conditions. The Florida Medical Marijuana Initiative, known as Amendment 2, authorized the use of marijuana to treat cancer, glaucoma, HIV, AIDS, Hepatitis C, ALS, Crohn’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, Multiple Sclerosis, PTSD, Epilepsy, and other conditions where a physician believes that the use of the medical marijuana would likely outweigh the potential health risks for a patient. Investors are now eagerly waiting to see how the Florida Legislature and Department of Health will implement this new law.
In the 2017 legislative session, the Florida’s State House of Representatives and Senate failed to implement Amendment 2 into law. Currently, there are discussions into having a special legislative session later this year but nothing has materialized yet. Additionally, the supporters of Amendment 2 are discussing using court actions via a lawsuit to implement Amendment 2. But for now, everything remains in flux.
In addition to expanding the use of medical marijuana in Florida, Amendment 2 requires Florida’s Department of Health to develop and implement rules and regulations for the medical marijuana industry before June of 2017. While Florida’s House and Senate are at loggerheads, the Health Department is relying on the state’s 2014 Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act for guidance. This has significant implications for potential investors. Early indications suggest that the Health Department may favor limiting access to the medical marijuana market to a handful of companies previously licensed to grow marijuana. The Health Department may also restrict the use of medical marijuana to a list of ten specific conditions, rather than giving doctors the freedom to recommend the drug whenever they think it is appropriate.
Given the uncertainty in this highly-regulated market, potential investors should seek legal advice as part of their due diligence on Florida’s medical marijuana market. Rimon, P.C. offers investors comprehensive legal advice regarding business consulting, business formation, incorporation, real estate, cross-border licensing, cannabis license applications, compliance, litigation and other areas associated with potential and existing cannabis businesses.
Our team of corporate, tax, banking, and compliance lawyers offer investors advice and guidance into all aspects of the medical marijuana industry. We advise our clients on a variety issues unique to this industry, from specific questions such as whether employers must allow employees to use medically prescribed marijuana at work, to more general matters regarding zoning, tax, and general corporate matters.
Our objective is to help medical marijuana businesses comply with regulations in the growing Florida medical marijuana industry. Among other services we provide counsel on:
Rimon, P.C. has 17 offices across the United States, including Orlando and Miami, Florida.