Cannabis Safe Harbor Legislation Reintroduced

PIA has been advocating to protect insurance agents from federal prosecution for doing business with cannabis-related enterprises in states in which such businesses are legal. Nearly every state has legalized cannabis to some degree.

PIA does not take a position on the legalization of cannabis and views this issue strictly a matter of respecting state insurance laws. In addition, given the evolving landscape of state law on this issue, insurance agents that engage in the business of insurance with businesses that comply with state laws must be protected from prosecution by the federal government.

To that end, PIA helped develop and supports two bills, both of which were recently reintroduced in the 118th Congress, which would provide protection for those engaging in insurance-related transactions associated with cannabis businesses that are otherwise legal under state law.

H.R. 2984/S. 1359, the Clarifying Law Around Insurance of Marijuana (CLAIM) Act is an insurance-specific bill introduced by Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-NY) and Warren Davidson (R-OH) and Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) and Senators Rand Paul (R-KY), Jon Tester (D-MT), Steve Daines (R-MT), and Jeff Merkley (D-OR). The CLAIM Act provides protections for the insurance industry to conduct business with cannabis-related businesses in states in which such entities are legal. Please see a letter PIA signed onto in support of the CLAIM Act here.

The second bill is the bipartisan Secure And Fair Enforcement Banking Act (SAFE Banking), S. 1323/H.R. 2891, introduced by Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Dave Joyce (R-OH) and Senators Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Steve Daines (R-MT). Please see a letter PIA signed onto in support of SAFE Banking Act here.

Initially conceived as a banking-specific bill, the current SAFE Banking Act includes key insurance provisions from the CLAIM Act meant to protect agents, brokers, and insurers.

The SAFE Banking Act passed the House four times last Congress, though it stalled in the Senate. PIA urges the 118th Congress to pass the SAFE Banking Act with the insurance protections from the CLAIM Act.