Legal and Business Implications of Cannabis Legalization in Virginia (On Demand Seminar)

MCLE Credits: 1.5
Ethics Credits Included: 0.0

MCLE Credit: 1.5 (Ethics: 0.0)
Live-Interactive Credit: 0.0
Price: $119 (Includes a downloadable audio version.)
Viewable Through: 07/31/2024


A pre-recorded streaming video replay of the June 2021 webcast, Legal and Business Implications of Cannabis Legalization in Virginia.

Topics Covered

  • Learn which parts of cannabis legalization are effective immediately, and which aspects are delayed pending additional legislative and regulatory action
  • Know the immediate legal implications of legalized personal possession and home cultivation, including whether landlords may prohibit cultivation, what liability a property owner might assume, and how human resource directors may respond
  • Examine the new, complex regulatory and permitting structure and how it is still evolving; success for clients in the years ahead requires an immediate understanding of the law and process
  • Discover how the establishment of a new $1.2-billion industry will impact dozens of other areas of law and practice
  • Understand how social equity is an important aspect of the law, and the direct requirements related to equity within the licensing and permitting process
  • Examine the development of diversity, equity, and inclusion plans required for certain types of licensees, and legislation including some SWaM provisions important to understand

In 2021, the Virginia General Assembly enacted legislation to legalize cannabis in the Commonwealth. The final legislation legalizes possession of small amounts of marijuana for personal use beginning July 1, 2021, and establishes a new independent regulatory authority within state government responsible for establishing the commercial cannabis industry, issuing regulations for cultivation, wholesaling, and retail sale of marijuana.

Early estimates conservatively project the value of Virginia’s cannabis market at $1.2 billion or more, and this new industry will have broad ripple effects across a number of ancillary industries including banking, finance, insurance, construction, real estate, distribution, marketing and advertising, hospitality, agriculture, and more.

The legalization of cannabis also presents unique new challenges to businesses, employers, and property owners, all of whom will face questions about what is and is not allowed under the law. In the years to come, all areas of law, such as regulatory, criminal, employment, and more, will be affected as the General Assembly continues to further refine the application of the law.

Virginia’s new cannabis law also includes specific provisions to ensure social equity in the licensing and permitting process, requires certain licensees to implement diversity, equity, and inclusion plans, and gives the new cannabis authority broad power to implement policies and regulations related to small, women-owned, and minority-owned businesses.

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Gregory D. Habeeb, Gentry Locke / Richmond
Erin M. Harrigan, Gentry Locke / Richmond
Todd A. Leeson, Gentry Locke / Roanoke


Gregory D. Habeeb, Gentry Locke / Richmond
Greg Habeeb is a former member of the Virginia House of Delegates, where he represented Virginia’s 8th District and served as Vice-Chair of the Courts of Justice Committee. He retired from the Virginia House of Delegates in August of 2018 and now chairs Gentry Locke’s Government and Regulatory Affairs team in Richmond, Virginia, and serves as President of Gentry Locke Consulting. Mr. Habeeb is also a litigation partner specializing in complex business and catastrophic injury cases, representing individuals and companies in courts throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia and the nation. In 2017 he was named a “Leader in the Law” by Virginia Lawyers Weekly.

Erin M. Harrigan, Gentry Locke / Richmond
Erin M. Harrigan is a partner in Gentry Locke’s Criminal & Government Investigations practice group. She guides clients through federal and state government investigations and enforcement actions, and has directed internal investigations for businesses confronting allegations of misconduct. Ms. Harrigan previously served as Assistant United States Attorney in the Western District of Virginia, based in Charlottesville, where she prosecuted and investigated public corruption, money laundering, regulatory offenses, human trafficking, and fraud cases of local origin and involving multi-national corporations. She was recognized for her work as Lead Prosecuting Attorney for the Organized Crime & Drug Enforcement Task Force with the OCDETF National Director’s Award.

Todd A. Leeson, Gentry Locke / Roanoke
Todd A. Leeson is a partner with Gentry Locke and has over 30 years of experience representing and advising Virginia employers in employment and labor law matters and litigation. He regularly defends employment claims in Virginia courts and before agencies, including the EEOC, National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), DOL, OSHA (whistleblower and retaliation claims), and the Virginia Division of Human Rights. His experience includes the defense of companies as to alleged violations of Title VII, ADA, ADEA, FLSA, FMLA, the NLRA, and Virginia employment laws. Mr. Leeson regularly drafts, enforces, and/or litigates non-compete agreements and executive employment contracts. In addition, he has considerable experience representing management in labor union matters including union avoidance campaigns, unfair labor practice charges, and labor arbitrations. He also represents Virginia colleges in various student conduct matters including Title IX and sexual misconduct complaints.

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