Garrett counsels clients throughout their corporate life cycle on corporate formation and structuring; ongoing operational agreements, including leases, supply/distribution agreements, licensing agreements, and services agreements; as well as debt/equity financing and mergers and acquisitions. Garrett’s practice often involves serving as outside general counsel and is inclusive of both corporate/M&A and regulatory compliance matters, along with issues relating to real estate, intellectual property protection, tax, litigation, policy, and international issues.
Garrett's practice centers on representing clients in a variety of regulated sectors, including cannabis (inclusive of both marijuana and hemp), food/beverage, and alcohol. Specific to the cannabis industry, Garrett represents clients on successfully obtaining licenses in numerous states in both competitive and non-competitive licensure processes. He also assists clients in general corporate matters, protecting intellectual property, establishing partnerships and joint ventures, and expanding clients’ footprints across multiple states and/or countries, along with regulatory compliance matters.
Garrett represents hemp companies across the country and world on matters including import/export, cultivation, processing and manufacturing, distribution, and navigating legislative and regulatory frameworks. He frequently works with federal, state, and local authorities on policy and enforcement matters. Notably, Garrett represented hemp industry stakeholders against the DEA in confirming the Farm Bill’s hemp provisions pre-empt DEA authority and the CSA. He also regularly works with stakeholders in drafting model legislative and regulatory policy.
Relatedly, from a regulatory perspective, Garrett counsels clients in navigating the many layers of international, federal, state, and local laws and regulations, ranging from marijuana- or hemp-specific laws and regulations to issues relating to conventional FDA and FTC compliance, Proposition 65 compliance, and import/export issues, along with other regulatory considerations.
Garrett has testified in judicial proceedings related to regulatory matters and frequently speaks in many forums - conferences, symposiums, and other events - regarding various issues, including cannabis and natural products.
- Represented multiple publicly or privately held companies and family offices in buy/sell transactions and related due diligence and regulatory compliance, ranging in value from $50,000 – $145,000,000, varying as corporate, regulatory, due diligence and/or local counsel.
- Represent and advise companies throughout the corporate life cycle, and consistent with the regulatory scheme, in drafting governing documents; corporate formation and structuring; operational agreements (e.g. leases; supply/distribution agreements; licensing agreements; services agreements); debt/equity financing; and mergers and acquisitions.
- Represent numerous companies (including multi-state operators) in industry-specific regulatory compliance, and complex multi-state compliance strategies, ranging from jurisdiction-specific legislative and regulatory issues to jurisdictional surveys.
- Represented publicly-traded company in the strategic deployment of over $300 million of assets in the cannabis industry, including advisement corporate, strategic and regulatory considerations.
- Drafted and advised on majority of merit-based applications for client who ultimately successfully obtained 2 out of 3 applications in a competitive license jurisdiction.
- Represent numerous companies in regulatory compliance matters, ranging from FDA and FTC compliance in marketing and labeling; data privacy; Prop 65; to import/export.
- Represent clients in various litigation or pre-litigation matters, with claims ranging from breach of contract, civil theft, fraud, FED, trade secrets, CRCP 106 to declaratory judgment.
- Represent hemp industry stakeholders in 2017 and 2020 challenges to DEA rulemaking.
- Advised numerous federal, state, local and tribal governments in drafting of legislation and promulgation of corresponding regulation to establish commercialized regulatory schemes.
- Represented association of Colorado hemp companies in lobbying and advocacy efforts.
Publications and Articles
“Ten experts reflect on state of U.S. hemp industry”
Natural Products Insider, April 2023
“Suing FDA over CBD would face procedural, substantive hurdles”
Natural Products Insider, March 2023
“Cannabis: Guidance for Real Property Owners”
Lexis Nexis | Practical Guidance, July 2022
“Lawyers Skeptical FDA Warning Letters Will Chill delta-8 THC Market”
Natural Products Insider, May 2022
“California’s CBD law: One step forward, two steps back?”
Hemp Industry Daily, February 2022
“Turning Over a New Leaf: Outlook for 2022”
Marijuana Venture, February 2022
“Hemp Experts Say 2023 Farm Bill Could Even Playing Field Between US and Rival Countries”
Hemp Industry Daily, October 2021
“State-Legalized Marijuana and Real Estate”
Lexis Nexis | Practical Guidance, September 2021
“Delta-8 THC Raises Questions About Intent of Farm Bill”
Natural Products Insider, July 2021
“An evolving perspective on therapeutic use of cannabis by athletes”
Natural Products Insider, June 2021
“Legal Cannabis Companies Pay Insane Tax Rates Thanks To A Minnesota Speed Dealer”
Forbes, April 2021
“Why the Cannabis Industry Needs To Get Greener”
Greenhouse Grower, January 2021
“Colorado hemp industry responds to new USDA rules”
MJBizDaily, August 2020
“The regulatory environment surrounding CBD-infused foods and drinks”
Natural Products Insider, July 2020
“Colorado hemp industry responds to new USDA rules”
Denver Business Journal, October 2019
“Hemp Investing 101: The Basics”
AG Web, August 2019
“Pennsylvania Senators Unveil Bill to Foster an Adult-use Cannabis Program”
Cannabis Law Report, April 2019
“Regulation of Different CBD Product Types”
National Products Insider, April 2019
“The FDA and Hemp: Status Check”
Cannabis Law Report, March 2019
“Leveling the Playing Field: New Developments in Colorado Marijuana Investment”
The Maven, June 2018
Speaking Engagements and Presentations
“CBD, The FDA, and an Act of Congress… Oh My”
NoCo Hemp Expo, March 2023
“The Top Three Legal Trends for Maintaining a Successful Brewery”
Colorado Craft Brewers Summit, November 2022
“What Investors are Looking for in Today’s Cannabis and Hemp Space”
NoCo Hemp Expo, March 2022
“Lighting up Cannabis: Parallels between State Cannabis Regulation and Income Taxation”
ABA-IPT Virtual Advanced State Income Tax Seminar, March 2022
“Regulatory Roulette: Federal and State Updates”
MJBizCon, October 2021
“How CBD Can Keep Disrupting Categories”
Informa Markets/Supply Side Network 365, August 2021
“Federal Policy – The Future of FDA and Cannabis Regulation”
International Cannabis Bar Association, August 12, 2021
“Cannabis: Organizational Forms for Growers and Dispensaries”
CPA Academy, July 21, 2021
“The Shake-Out Since the Farm Bill”
International Cannabis Bar Association, October 2020