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Don’t Let Your Hard Work Go Up in Smoke - Protecting Your Canna-Legacy

I spend a lot of my time talking about things that nobody wants to talk about.

For many years, it was cannabis. The industry has grown so much so quickly that now everybody wants to talk about it. But it wasn’t always that way. And even today, I still find myself bringing up the topics that everybody else just wants to stay quiet about.

Like death.

I’m thinking about estate planning a lot right now because a lot can change in a year. You can get married or divorced, buy or sell a house, lose a loved one or bring a new life into the world. As many of you know, my husband and I welcomed our second kid in November 2018, and naturally, with a baby toddling around, the mama bear in me comes out. Which is why I’m talking about planning ahead, right now.

In case you didn’t already know, I offer estate planning services.

It’s the foundation on which I built my legal career in Florida before moving to Colorado and specializing in cannabis business law. And estate planning is something I’ve found is most needed by cannabis business owners. And everyone else!

A comprehensive estate plan will include a combination of the following documents and more, depending on your situation:

  • Living Will: A declaration of decisions and types of care to be received in the event the declarant cannot communicate such decisions/consents at the time of care

  • Medical Power of Attorney: A declaration as to the person (and back up person) to make medical decisions for the declarant in the event the living will doesn’t cover it and declarant cannot communicate such decisions/consents at the time of care

  • Durable Power of Attorney: Names an agent who can make decisions on another’s behalf regarding finances and property.  DPOAs are only operative during the principal’s lifetime

  • Will:  A declaration of how an individual wants their real and personal property distributed upon their death

  • Trust: valuable planning tool in the event of a taxable estate (applicable when decedent dies with over $11.4M in assets currently) or for privacy (trusts are not filed with the courts)

And whether you are a cannabis consumer, home grower, business owner - or all three! - your estate plan should be prepared with those facts in mind.

In the world of cannabis, you encounter a lot of problems. You’ve gotten really good at managing them.  One problem you may not have known about is how differently your estate needs to be handled. As you build your business, you’re building your legacy. But because of the classification of marijuana right now, your legacy will be handled differently — everything from the probate process to the effect of death on the business is different when marijuana is involved.

You have valuable cannabis assets that a typical estate planning attorney may not know how to deal with and a DIY solution won’t account for at all. These assets are unique, because laws and regulations around cannabis are still evolving.

And without a quality estate plan, you have no way to protect all of your hard work.

You need an estate plan if:

  • You don’t have an estate plan

  • You had an estate plan in another state, but now live in Colorado

  • You had a child, got married/divorced, acquired new assets recently

  • You started a marijuana business since your last estate plan

And you need to work with an attorney with experience in both estate planning and cannabis law. That’s where I come in.

Book an estate planning session before the end of Q2, and let’s protect everything you’ve worked so hard to create.  Book here or give me a call at (303) 586-5020.

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