On March 23,  Senators Jeff Merkley (D-Or.) and Steve Daines (R-Mt.) re-introduced the SAFE Banking Act. As noted previously here, the SAFE Banking Act would increase access to banking services for cannabis-related businesses. The bill would provide safe harbor and other protections under federal law to financial institutions and insurers that provide services to cannabis-related legitimate businesses. While the bill passed the House last September, it ultimately failed in the Senate.
Continue Reading SAFE Banking Act Reintroduced in Senate

If you’re looking for a landslide in the 2020 elections, look no further than the undisputed winner—marijuana. In each of the ballot initiatives up for consideration, voters said yes to expanded liberalization in cannabis-related laws by undeniably wide margins. Voters from across the political spectrum in red and blue states alike approved medical and recreational cannabis laws, including the legalization of medical cannabis in Mississippi and South Dakota and the legalization of cannabis possession by adults in Arizona, Montana, New Jersey, and South Dakota. Legislatures will soon enact laws in conformance with these ballot initiatives. A total of 35 states and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana for medical use, 15 of which allow adults to legally use the drug for recreational use as of November 2020.
Continue Reading What Financial Institutions Need to Know About Banking Legal Cannabis Companies

Late last month, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 595, the Secure and Fair Enforcement Banking Act of 2019 (the “SAFE Banking Act”). The stated purpose of the SAFE Banking Act is to “increase public safety by ensuring access to financial services to cannabis-related legitimate businesses and service providers and reducing the amount of cash at such businesses.”

In particular, the bill would provide safe harbor and other protections under federal law to financial institutions and insurers that provide services to cannabis-related legitimate businesses. Under the proposed bill, such insurers and financial service providers would not be subject to liability under federal law solely for providing such services to, or investing the income derived from, cannabis-related legitimate businesses.
Continue Reading SAFE Banking Act Passes House, Aims to Increase Access of Cannabis-Related Businesses to Banking Services