Basic Employment Rights in a Federally Illegal Industry

Federal court in Colorado finds FLSA applies to marijuana businesses

A patent on a cannabis product is the focus of a lawsuit in federal court.
A patent on a cannabis product is the focus of a lawsuit in federal court.

As legalization of marijuana expands from state to state, businesses in the industry are constantly feeling out the reach of the federal laws they’re bound by. And a recent Colorado class action case working its way through the U.S. District Court is telling marijuana businesses that, yes, their employees are protected by the Fair Labor Standards Act and no, the protections do not depend on the legality of the business itself under federal law. An attorney for the plaintiffs says at its heart, the case is a quite basic FLSA case about employees seeking the un-paid wages to which they are entitled.

To read this story and other complete articles featured in the June 25, 2018 print edition of Law Week Colorado, copies are available for purchase online.