Cannabis Law: Everything You Always Wanted to Know (But Were Afraid to Ask) |

Cannabis Law: Everything You Always Wanted to Know (But Were Afraid to Ask)

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Professionalism (Ethics, etc.): 0.25
20 minutes
Substantive: 0.75
45 minutes
Russell Bennett
Matt Maurer
Toronto Lawyers Association (TLA)
65 minutes
$99.00 plus tax

Matt Maurer and Russell Bennett, two Toronto cannabis lawyers candidly converse about the potential perils of practising cannabis law.

Curious about the latest developments in cannabis law?

Matt and Russell will talk about what it’s like to be a cannabis lawyer, explain what the law is and is not, describe who the clients are and what they need, and point out where the pitfalls are.

Topics of Discussion


  • purchase of a cannabis production and/or processing company
  • in addition to regular issues of a share purchase, must consider issues of security clearances, notification requirements, licence-holder, QAP
  • compliance - knowing what your client is doing - eg. CannTrust


  • licensing
  • zoning prohibitions
  • security clearances - what to do if you have a criminal record?
  • online distribution

Commercial leasing

  • Is the landlord unwittingly allowing someone to start an illegal cannabis production facility because they do not know what is permitted
  • what is a designated grower under Part 14 of the Cannabis Regulations and how does it differ from a production licence?

Medical cannabis growing under Part 14

  • zoning issues
  • distribution

Ethical issues (throughout each topic)

  • Competence – if a lawyer is not competent in an area of law, what are his/her obligations?
  • Dishonesty, Fraud - A lawyer shall not knowingly assist in or encourage any dishonesty, fraud, crime, or illegal conduct. Cannabis law still has many “grey areas”, but are they “illegal?”
  • Threatening Penal or Regulatory Proceedings – Can a lawyer advise a client to complain to a regulatory authority like Health Canada or CRA?


Russell Bennett

B.Sc., LL.B., author of Canada’s Cannabis Act: Annotation and Commentary, and the founder of Cannabis Law

Matt Maurer

Matt is a partner at Torkin Manes and Vice Chair of the firm’s Cannabis Law Group. He is an accomplished trial and appellate lawyer in our Litigation Group with over a decade of experience advocating on behalf of his corporate clients.

Matt provides regulatory advice to a wide range of cannabis industry stakeholders, including licensed producers, producer applicants, owners of businesses that provide ancillary services to the cannabis industry, entrepreneurs with start-up aspirations, and foreign businesses who are looking to enter the Canadian market or enter into partnerships with established Canadian cannabis businesses.

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