American Bar Association Says Firms Working ‘Indirectly’ With Marijuana Industry Should Get COVID Relief

American Bar Association Says Firms Working ‘Indirectly’ With Marijuana Industry Should Get COVID Relief

The American Bar Association (ABA) sent a letter to the heads of the Treasury Department and Small Business Administration (SBA) on Friday, urging them to end a current policy preventing law firms that service state-legal marijuana businesses from receiving federal coronavirus relief. SBA has made clear that cannabis companies are ineligible for its Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans—but its policy also bars those that work with marijuana businesses indirectly from getting the aid. ABA, which has nearly 200,000 dues-paying members, said it wants clarification or a formal policy change to make it so indirect businesses are not impacted. “The ABA supports amending federal law to ensure that lawyers do not face the threat of criminal charges when they represent clients in states that have legalized marijuana,” the organization said. “Even before those changes are made to federal law, lawyers should also not be penalized for providing legal services to cannabis-related businesses that comply with state laws.” ABA also argued that the policy is excessively broad in that it stipulates that companies that derive any revenue from servicing a cannabis business cannot receive relief during the pandemic. “Thus, a law firm where a single lawyer provided advice to a single marijuana business client on legal issues for a nominal fee would arguably be ineligible under this language for the SBA PPP loan program,” the organization wrote. ABA’s letter further notes that 78 percent of firms are located in states where marijuana is legal in some form. “We urge SBA to provide…

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Source : MJ moment
Link to original : American Bar Association Says Firms Working ‘Indirectly’ With Marijuana Industry Should Get COVID Relief
reposted by Cannabis News World

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