Friday, May 11, 2012

Insurer Terminates Lawyer's Coverage Because of Medical Marijuana Ties

After several years of representing clients who are and were in the medical marijuana industry, Denver-based attorney Ann Toney was informed her insurer would no longer cover her for malpractice.

The Hanover Insurance Group, the company that covers Toney, told her the termination was because of her involvement with medical marijuana. The Medical Marijuana Business Daily speculates that this may have a similar, chilling effect on other professionals who provide services for medical marijuana clients, such as other lawyers, other insurers and accountants.

This action comes at a time when banks are skittish handling similar transactions and U.S. Attorneys are stepping up raids on dispensaries in states that have legalized pot for medical use.

The Medical Marijuana Business Daily quotes Brian Vicente, another Denver medical marijuana attorney as saying:
I’m concerned that this could spread, as insurance carriers can be very risk averse at times. However, there are many (lawyers) out there who represent the mob and child molesters, and the fact that (an insurance company) would say that’s OK and medical marijuana isn’t doesn’t make sense.

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