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Question: Under New York law, are business contracts involving cannabis invalid because they are illegal under federal law?

Posted by David Holland | Apr 25, 2021 | 0 Comments


No, New York has taken special measures to ensure that the business of cannabis is protected under the law. More specifically, the MRTA contains the following express provision:

MRTA, Article 6, Section 134 – Lawful Action – Contracts entered into in accordance with adult use and medical cannabis programs “…shall be lawful and shall not be deemed unenforceable on the basis that the actions permitted pursuant to the registration, license or permit are prohibited by federal law.”

About the Author

David Holland

As Executive Director of Empire State NORML and President of the New York City Cannabis Industry Association, David has been a leading advocate in the cannabis space for over 20 years. He has represented clients in marijuana related proceedings everywhere from traffic court to the United States Supreme Court, and he helped obtain clemency for five elderly prisoners servicing life without parole for marijuana. David also handles complex civil and criminal litigation in other areas including employment, First Amendment, and business.


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