On Demand Audio

The End of Prohibition? Pending Federal Cannabis Legislation in 2020

(520 reviews)

Produced on April 20, 2020

Taught by
$ 89 Business, Corporate, & Securities and Cannabis In Stock
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Course Information

Time 1h 5m
Difficulty Intermediate
Topics covered in this course: Business, Corporate, & Securities Cannabis

Course Description

This program will examine the most important pending Federal legislation focused on cannabis in 2020, and what changes to the industry their potential enactment might unleash. The presenter will examine the STATES Act, the MORE Act, and the SAFE Banking Act, and will take a “deep dive” into what passage of each - or all - of these bills could mean for current cannabis industry participants, as well as for the numerous outside companies, banks, and investors currently watching the cannabis industry from the sidelines.

Learning Objectives:
  1. Discuss how marijuana and hemp are regulated today in the United States, both by the federal government and at the state level
  2. Analyze what the primary proposed federal legislation could do (and definitely won’t do) for participants in the cannabis industry
  3. Appreciate the challenges faced by state-compliant cannabis businesses in navigating federal regulations 

Credit Information

After completing this course, Lawline will report your attendance information to {{ accredMasterState.state.name }}. Please ensure your license number is filled out in your profile to ensure timely reporting. For more information, see our {{ accredMasterState.state.name }} CLE Requirements page . After completing this course, {{ accredMasterState.state.name }} attorneys self-report their attendance and CLE compliance. For more information on how to report your CLE courses, see our {{ accredMasterState.state.name }} CLE Requirements FAQ .


James Rieger

Tannenbaum Helpern Syracuse & Hirschtritt LLP

James Rieger has a broad corporate and securities law practice. James represents public and private companies, hedge funds, merchant banks, private equity funds, exchange traded funds, venture capital funds, investment banks, underwriters, and private investors in many types of transactions, including public and private debt and equity offerings, credit facilities, mergers, acquisitions, fund formation, activist investments, restructurings and divestitures of assets and divisions. James counsels companies and funds on their filings under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and their participation in tender offers, proxy contests, and other hostile takeover actions. James also handles general corporate matters, including employment agreements, contracts, cannabis-related matters, and joint venture agreements.

A representative sample of James' private equity-related experience follows:

  • Representation of Life Sciences fund in taking control of a publicly-traded Canadian medical marijuana company.
  • Representation of real estate private equity fund in fund formation.
  • Representation of timber fund in fund formation and seeding.
  • Representation of a solar fund in fund formation and seeding.
  • Representation of an investment adviser in micro-lending fund with backing from multi-lateral institutions.
  • Representation of Latin-American focused private equity fund in fund formation.
  • Representation of one of the sponsors of private equity fund management business in the formation and ongoing matters.
  • Representation of one of the equity sponsors in the $14 billion club acquisition of a savings bank from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
  • Representation of equity sponsor in the acquisition and recapitalization of an airline.
  • Representation of equity sponsor in $400 million sales of helmet manufacturer to another private equity fund.
  • Representation of equity participant in $150 million buyouts of publicly traded sporting goods manufacturer.
  • Representation of a temporary staffing business in $70 million in sales to a private equity fund.
  • Representation of management in connection with the recapitalization of private equity fund controlled temporary staffing business.
  • Representation of a defense contractor in $10 million recapitalizations of private equity fund controlled entity.
  • Representation of aircraft component manufacturer in $20 million recapitalizations by private equity fund.
  • Representation of extended warranty business in $20 million in sales to a private equity fund.
  • Representation of Latin-American focused private equity fund in a $25 million long-term credit facility from the quasi-governmental agency.
  • Representation of medical products equipment supplier in $50 million sale to private equity fund.
  • Representation of broker-dealers in $5 million in sales to a private equity fund.
  • Representation of a consulting business in $10 million sales to a private equity fund.
  • Representation of seed investor in $35 million investment in a new private equity fund and fund manager.
  • Representation of private equity fund in $25 million purchase of stationery and gift items manufacturer.
  • Representation of private equity fund in Section 363 acquisition of assets in bankruptcy.
  • Representation of private equity fund in the recapitalization of security and alarm company and later provision of debtor-in-possession financing.

Law School:


  • State University of New York at Albany , 1988, BA
  • Honors: Cum Laude
 Prior Affiliations
  • Over 12 years as counsel and associated with the law firms Dechert LLP and Swidler Berlin Shereff Friedman, LLP


  • Chair, New York State Bar Association Business Law Section's Mergers and Acquisitions Committee
  • New York
 Award Recognitions
  • Super Lawyers: 2014-2019

Case Studies



Ryan G.

Very well done

John-Paul G.


Kenneth H.

The course was fun and interesting.

Brian K.

Vey interesting

Allison P.

It would have been preferable to teach the course from a neutral position, but it was otherwise a great course. Thanks!

Roy C.

It's an interesting new area. I was glad to learn a bit about it.

Charles S.

The presenter was excellent. Neutral presentation of the material.

Erin B.

Thanks. Really enjoyed learning from this course.

Douglas H.

It was drier than I hoped but it is a CLE. Cannabis is a big issue on the legal horizon perhaps I was more focused on policy v law

Paul I.

Excellent update.

Susan M.

Loved the overview, and the complexity of this topic. Thank you!

Michael S.

Solid presentation - a great amount of substantive info on relevant and pending Fed legislation in 1 hour.

Joshua R.

Most informative and well crafted class on this site so far.

John M.

Very knowledgeable presenter i

Heather P.

It was hard to hear sometimes, although I had the volume at maximum., but that's understandable in this time. It didn't detract too much from program itself.

Jeffrey D.

Very good! Thank you!

Casimir W.

Very informative. Presenter is very knowledgeable.

Deanna M.

Another relavant in the time of COVID lecture!

Gerard M.

Great presentation.

Natalie C.

I thought the Zoom format worked really well, and very much appreciate that the presentation still went forward with everything going on! Very interesting material!

Catherine D.

So timely and spot on.

Nathan C.

Good information on a very volatile area of the law.

Sarah S.

Thank you for offering this LIVE. In this COVID era, I would hope more states would forego their LIVE CLE requirements, but until they do, please offer more of these LIVE sessions. Thankfully, technology makes a LIVE presentation possible!

Margaret Holly M.

Fantastic overview of the law. Very informative!

Antoine M.

Clear, simplified insight and overview from attorney who concentrates in this field.

Daniel D.

Good job on the Zoom worked well on the short notice COVID-19 Speaker was well prepared and he covered a lot of material.

Andrew T.

Presenter was excellent.

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