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Immigration Issues and Cannabis

The Cannabis Industry

With major legislative differences between the U.S. and Canada in relation to cannabis, those working in the industry can expect increased scrutiny when crossing the U.S. border. Under U.S. federal law, the sale, possession, production and distribution of cannabis is considered illegal. Therefore, crossing the border or arriving at a U.S. port of entry, in violation of this law, could result in seizure, fines, arrest and deemed inadmissible.

According to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency (CBP) official statement on Canada’s legalization of cannabis and crossing the border:

‘A Canadian citizen working in or facilitating the proliferation of the legal marijuana industry in Canada, coming to the U.S. for reasons unrelated to the marijuana industry will generally be admissible to the U.S. however, if a traveler is found to be coming to the U.S. for reason related to the marijuana industry, they may be deemed inadmissible.’

Currently, the U.S. CBP has not specified what types of activities are related or unrelated to the marijuana industry and so uncertainty about admissibility to the U.S. continues to remain.

How we can help

While it is impossible to eliminate all risk associated with entering the United States, by addressing the current cross-border situation with a proactive rather than reactive posture, Green and Spiegel can help manage risk, maximize border crossing and help your organization expand in this burgeoning industry.

Compliance & Risk Mitigation Services

  • Creating travel policies that adhere to current border regulation
  • Providing webinars and in-person seminars with key team members regarding permissible activities in the United States
  • Creating individual travel packets to present at the border if questioned by a CBP officer
  • Providing 24-7 availability for those encountering difficulty at the border
  • Providing remediation efforts for those that have been found inadmissible to the United States including reapplication for admission and waiver applications
  • Providing expert advice to Human Resources on new employment considerations.

For more information regarding the issue of cannabis and entering the U.S., please contact Jonathan A. Grode, Esq. jgrode@gands-us.com or Matthew Galati, Esq mgalati@gands-us.com.


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