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Question: What is the Cole Memo or other Attorney General policies on marijuana cannabis?

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


Ogden Memo - October 19, 2009 - Deputy Attorney General gave guidance advice to US Attorneys in districts which have Medical Marijuana advising to conserve prosecutorial resources and not target medical patients who are purchasing and consuming in accordance with the state law where they reside.

            Veteran's Administration Directive - 2011 - Guidance given to the V.A. instructing them not to automatically discharge a veteran who had been found to be using medical marijuana in accordance with a state program in the state where the patient resides.

            Cole Memo - (“Cole I”) - 2011 - Deputy Director Cole issues guidance to US Attorneys in Districts where there is medical marijuana to conserve resources and not target commercial medical marijuana grow and dispensary facilities as long as they are acting in conformity with state law where the facility is found. 

            Cole Memo (“Cole II”) - 2013 - Deputy Director Cole along with FINRA provides guidance to US banking system advising that subject to 8 governing criteria, chartered banks may receive funds from medical marijuana and recreational facilities as long as the facilities are compliant with state law in the states where they are found.

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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