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Guide released to help cannabis businesses better assess cannabis banking options

The Cannabis Financial Industry Group (CFIG), a coalition of financial institutions and associated risk-mitigating service providers serving the regulated U.S. cannabis industry, announced the publication of a guide to help state-legal cannabis-related businesses (CRBs) understand the importance of engaging with a financial institution with a strong cannabis banking program to keep their accounts safe and sound (click here to view). This resource will help CRBs to better assess financial institutions offering cannabis banking services and the importance of working with institutions that have established and compliant programs. The document also aims to help educate CRBs about the requirements and compliance costs associated with servicing this unique industry that financial institutions must adhere to presently and in the future, even once the SAFER Banking Act or other federal cannabis policies shift. Additionally, it highlights the importance of CRBs providing required documentation for both onboarding and continued monitoring for maintaining a banking relationship that is highly compliant, which is essential for both the financial institution and the client.

The release of this guide for CRBs to better assess cannabis banking options follows the publication of program standards for cannabis-serving financial institutions by CFIG in July 2023 (click here to view).

“Just as important as our work at CFIG in educating lawmakers and financial institutions as to the existing compliance mechanisms in place for cannabis banking programs and the extreme due diligence financial institutions must adhere to when servicing the state-legal industry, it is vital that cannabis-related businesses and individuals involved in the industry understand the importance of choosing the right financial institution to enter into a banking relationship with,” said Saphira Galoob, Executive Director of CFIG. “While Congress continues to debate cannabis banking legislation, those operating or supporting cannabis businesses in the 38 states with legal programs need to know that there are financial institutions that will allow them to maintain banking relationships, critical for their operations and personal livelihoods. At the same time, CRBs need to understand the requirements financial institutions must have to maintain such relationships and be able to better assess if a potential bank has the compliance mechanisms in place to protect them both. Our objective with this document is to help those in the state-legal cannabis industry better navigate a successful and compliant banking relationship.”

“As more states continue moving to establish or expand cannabis programs, new businesses, operators, and employees are facing uncertain banking options due to federal inaction on cannabis reform,” said Erin Moffet, CFIG’s Director of Communications and Policy. “With this document, we hope to provide those in the state-legal cannabis industry with a better understanding of the importance of a transparent and highly compliant banking relationship, the requirements and documentation needed to enter into and maintain such a relationship, and how to better assess the integrity of a financial institution’s cannabis banking program to protect their livelihoods.”

For more information:
Cannabis Financial Industry Group
www.cfig.org

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