Many of us within the cannabis industry – especially legacy operators – obtain small to no experience with company governance. I don’t mean to verbalize that they don’t know the plan to bustle a industry; they likely assemble. What I mean as soon as I consult with company governance is the correct technique of adhering to governance agreements, getting required votes, papering company actions because it’ll be, and so forth. It is miles a topic in a regulated market where operators are no doubt compelled to take care of organized entities that wants to be ruled because it’ll be.

Final year, I appeared at why company governance is severe. In that put up I talked about some same old company governance errors. This day I desire to earn into element on a few of the same old company governance errors our cannabis attorneys robotically gaze within the industry.

#1 Overissuing inventory

Entities are formed by submitting documents to a snarl agency. In California, to illustrate, the submitting of articles of incorporation creates an group. Reckoning on the snarl and entity form, the incorporator or organizer must establish what number of shares of inventory the corporate can instruct in this initial submitting. If the entity wants to instruct extra inventory than the initial submitting authorizes, it must amend the initial submitting.

The problem is that cannabis firms in total ignore their initial authorization caps and instruct inventory above and beyond the cap. It is miles a mountainous instruct! It would possibly maybe maybe in point of fact per chance mean that the additional inventory is unauthorized and even invalid, exposing the corporate to legal responsibility from the contributors holding the unauthorized inventory. There is a extremely easy formula to earn to the backside of this: protect an inquire on inventory caps and amending articles of incorporation to enable extra inventory. Unfortunately, for many cannabis firms, this same old company governance characteristic in total gets overlooked.

#2 Improperly setting up multiple courses of fairness

In an identical plan, let’s snarl an group’s articles handiest authorize same old inventory however the board decides to instruct most smartly-most widespread inventory. If the corporate doesn’t amend its articles – which occurs loads – the issuance is set into ask. That will likely be correct even when the corporate has amended its shareholder agreement or other governing documents.

#three No longer getting required votes

Most company choices require a majority vote. When drafting a startup’s governance documents, the owners robotically ask to assemble obvious choices enviornment to unanimous or swish majority (2/three or three/Four hoping on the style you clarify it) votes. In total higher thresholds are reserved for mountainous-image things. However no longer consistently! If the corporate is purported to earn swish majority approval to earn on unique debt over $one hundred,000 and doesn’t earn the approval, the corporate will likely be in scorching water with the owners and maybe the lender.

#Four Protecting bad info

This would per chance be the biggest instruct we gaze continuously: founders produce an organization and hire a regulations firm to prepare a neat station of company cannabis governance documents. They pay their attorneys, set the doctors in a file cupboard, and never see at them again. Over the years they change the board of directors, appoint unique officers, and even instruct unique shares without papering any of it. Then, a time comes after they must raise out a deal that requires merely governance.

It is a form of more straightforward to pay a legal marvelous to draft up easy and short governance documents or motivate with concurs or resolutions on an ongoing foundation than it’s to dig out of a compliance cleanup nightmare enjoy this. It’s also a form of more cost-effective and faster, and doesn’t prolong inking a deal.

#5 No longer having a shareholder agreement

This is one other titanic one and applies to firms. Shareholder agreements are agreements among shareholders to manipulate an group. They customarily are no longer considerable but as an organization grows, it’d be crazy no longer to obtain one.

A total bunch founders set shareholder agreements on the backburner till they are considerable, but at that point it’ll also merely be too late. If an organization wants (or wants) a shareholder agreement to shut out a deal but one shareholder refuses to signal, all bets are off and the deal will likely be killed.


These are handiest factual about a examples of cannabis company governance errors, but they are errors we gaze on a routine foundation. We’ll continue to duvet extra on cannabis company governance, so protect finding out.

The put up 5 Hashish Corporate Governance Mistakes appeared first on Harris Bricken Sliwoski LLP.