Banks Say No to Marijuana Money, Legal or Not
Banks have many compliance requirements placed on them by regulators and governments, some of these include obligations to detect and prevent things such as money laundering, etc. While the objective makes perfect sense, this is raising an interesting side-effect for those dealing legally with marijuana, such as dispensaries.
Legal marijuana businesses are finding themselves caught between the devil and the deep blue sea because marijuana is still classified as a Schedule I under the Controlled Substances Act and therefore illegal under federal law. Inadvertently caught on the wrong side of banking compliance, merchants are being denied access to services like bank accounts and credit card processing – essential services in this day and age.
Unable to acquire the banking services many merchants take for granted, these businesses are consequently being forced into dealing with large piles of cash. Imagine pillow cases or suitcases filled with bundles of cash and you’re probably not far off :-)
Seems like some special kind of dispensation is going to be required, but no one ought to hold their breath since everyone knows how fast anything to do with governments moves. Maybe these merchants need people to help take their piles of cash to the bank :-)