On October 17, 2018, recreational cannabis became legal in Canada, authorizing provincial cannabis markets to emerge across the nation in the recreational space. This wholesale legalization remains in stark contrast to the legal status of cannabis in the United States where, at the commencement of 2019, only ten states in the U.S.A. allowed for recreational cannabis use and 33 states allowed for medical cannabis use while cannabis remains a Schedule 1 drug criminalized under U.S. federal law. As Americans are grappling with the tensions between state legalization and federal prohibition and uncertainty surrounding the legality of cannabis businesses, we seek to provide a snapshot of what the current legal landscape is for cannabis businesses in the different stages of their business.
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American Bar Association