Malpractice Insur. Co. Cuts Denver Lawyer For Advising Medical Marijuana Businesses

In what appears to be a first nationally, a malpractice insurance carrier has refused to renew Denver lawyer Ann Toney's policy because she advises medical marijuana businesses.

In its terse notice, the Hanover Insurance Group explained that Toney's practice "does not meet current underwriting guidelines because of the following risk factors: Area of practice involving medical marijuana."

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    And the lawyers for Seagrams, Coors, Busch...? (none / 0) (#1)
    by Dadler on Mon May 07, 2012 at 01:12:00 PM EST
    Plugging along with nothing in their pants but fat wallets and tiny joints. George Washington, hemp farmer, show thyself.

    I know Hanover Insurance Group... (none / 0) (#2)
    by kdog on Mon May 07, 2012 at 01:46:26 PM EST
    loves them some money, so what gives?  Did the DOJ put the screws to them in some way?

    Wonder what percentage of attorneys (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by oculus on Mon May 07, 2012 at 01:50:27 PM EST
    representing persons/companies assoc. with mj are actually sued for malpractice.  

    client:  you advised me it is legal to run a medical mj store, but it ain't.

    lawyer:  so, sue me.  


    My gut feeling is... (none / 0) (#11)
    by kdog on Tue May 08, 2012 at 09:23:04 AM EST
    those in the mj business know where any malpractice lies...with the state.

    I may be naive, but I think the growers and providers know the score of the murky legal situation and would give their attorney(s) wide berth, and not look to sue them at the drop of a hat.


    I asked my high school classmates (none / 0) (#12)
    by oculus on Tue May 08, 2012 at 10:42:57 AM EST
    For their opinions re fed. Legalization re marijuana. Results of my poll so far:  do it.  Surprising as on Obamacare and immigration this group includes some very conservative people.  

    Honestly... (none / 0) (#13)
    by kdog on Tue May 08, 2012 at 10:46:17 AM EST
    I don't see how any self-respecting free market conservative could support prohibition.  The "moral majority" conservative puritans yeah, but not a free marketeer...prohibition is an afront to everything they supposedly stand for.

    I was thinking along those lines too (none / 0) (#14)
    by ruffian on Tue May 08, 2012 at 11:04:59 AM EST
    When the state and the feds are in conflict over the law, it seems a risky business for lawyers in the middle.

    I think More Along... (none / 0) (#16)
    by ScottW714 on Tue May 08, 2012 at 01:23:31 PM EST
    ...the lines of filling paperwork/forms/taxes.

    For example, last year when the DEA went after the growers and retailers it decided that criminal enterprises couldn't deduct expenses on their tax returns.  I can't remember the amounts involved, but they were substantial, millions I believe.

    If a CPA or a tax attorney had advised them on filing the return, clearly it was bad advise.  Now if you are the person on the receiving end of the screwing from the Feds, and think this case was in the millions, and the Fed wants their bread, what are going to do ?

    Who knows, but certainly there is a huge liability for any professional who gives advise to legitimate businesses at the state level that are still illegal at the federal level.  And to me it stands to reason that a malpractice insurance carrier wouldn't want anything to do with those unknown liabilities.


    Not That I Agree, but... (none / 0) (#4)
    by ScottW714 on Mon May 07, 2012 at 04:14:15 PM EST
    ... surely the insurance can be expected to flip the bill on an industry that is still illegal at the Federal level.

    I can't think of an easier malpractice instance, an attorney basically giving advise on an illegal business.  Who are they going to go after when their business get seized and the Feds start pushing jail time and huge fines ?

    It's non-sense, when a half of the public thinks MM should be legal and 1/3 of the states have made it legal, the Fed should not be putting people in these kinds of positions.  Especially one lead by a man who said they would be left alone.  We are tying ourselves in knots because of ridiculous and antiquated views of MM.

    Hmmmm (none / 0) (#6)
    by jbindc on Mon May 07, 2012 at 05:03:07 PM EST
    I can't think of an easier malpractice instance, an attorney basically giving advise on an illegal business.

    Should an attorney give advice on how to rob a bank or murder someone?

    Just asking.


    Not if They Want Malpractice Insurance (none / 0) (#10)
    by ScottW714 on Tue May 08, 2012 at 08:51:30 AM EST
    See below, that can should have been a can't... sorry.

    Should be Can't, Not Can... (none / 0) (#5)
    by ScottW714 on Mon May 07, 2012 at 04:15:07 PM EST

    joys of free enterprise (none / 0) (#7)
    by diogenes on Mon May 07, 2012 at 07:37:07 PM EST
    If this is such a lucrative business, then surely some other insurance company will pick up this policy and rake in the profits.

    SITE VIOLATOR (none / 0) (#9)
    by jbindc on Tue May 08, 2012 at 06:20:25 AM EST
    Busy guy

    USAA (none / 0) (#15)
    by Chuck0 on Tue May 08, 2012 at 11:15:11 AM EST
    refused to renew my automobile and homeowner's insurance because they found out my ex-wife (wife at the time) was a convicted felon. She was not covered by the auto policies whatsoever, but my mere association was cause to refuse to renew. I promptly transferred approx. $60K from their bank to my local credit union. I also re-financed my USAA mortgage with another lender. I guess they don't need customers that bad. Funny, though, they used to NEVER advertise, now I see ads all over TV and on billboards.