Legal Cannabis Support – Clarion Call

Legal Cannabis Support – Clarion Call

Legal Cannabis Support – Clarion Call
aBIZinaBOX Inc.

Legal Cannabis Support – Clarion Call – I am writing this post to express my personal views regarding the incredible opportunity 2018 provides me as a CPA – tax practitioner with thirty-seven years in professional practice. I was prompted to write this post in part as a consequence of the posts of others as is described below. The principal reason for writing this post is to call on all advisors with any interest in this incredible opportunity to act as members of a group whose over-riding goals are the successes of their clients.

First, let me describe the incredible opportunity that 2018 provides me and many others. Over the past 18 months, I have been given the opportunity to become immersed in the legal commercial cannabis industry in California. The overnight transformation from a laissez-faire, largely unregulated marketplace into an exceptionally complex, highly regulated marketplace with twenty-three state-level agencies, and hundreds of county and municipal agencies are breathtaking. In a short span of time, a professional advisor has been presented with the greatest challenges of a professional lifetime in a Wild West landscape. In this environment, professional advisors have both an opportunity, and of far greater significance, the obligation, to provide their skills, guidance, and creativity so their clients succeed and California’s fledgling regulated cannabis industry thrives.

I also want to take the opportunity of this post to describe the exceptional opportunities and experiences that have brought to this point in time. It began at the University of Illinois – Urbana Accountancy program. I had the good fortune to be pointed to the MS – Taxation Program at the University of Texas – Austin by Professor Robert Jamison. Arthur Wyatt, CPA [deceased] encouraged me to join Arthur Andersen LLP where I ultimately become a Tax Partner.

Andersen culture taught us from day one that a client’s business success was of paramount importance. We were expected to subordinate personal and family commitments to pursue business success for our clients – a perspective that appears to have changed in recent decades. Not only were we encouraged to use all of the worldwide resources of the global Arthur Andersen organization to assist our clients, but also we were aggressively encouraged to seek out and engage with our client’s legal counsel. Leveraging the complementary knowledge and skills we had as certified public accountants and global presence of Anderson with the talents and skills of exceptionally gifted attorneys allowed us to jointly make the maximum possible contribution to the successes of our clients.

When I take a moment to reflect upon the group of exceptionally talented attorneys with whom I have had the good fortune to work and learn, the list is astounding. While I did not start out with the intention of recognizing them, and there are many more who should be mentioned, a few who come immediately to mind are:

• Currently – The Law Offices of William E. Taggart Jr, [formerly Taggart and Hawkins] – William E. Taggart, Jr. Esq. as well as his former partner Karen L. Hawkins, Esq. [Chair of the ABA Tax Section and formerly the Director of the IRS Office of Professional Responsibility].

Schulte, Roth & Zabel – Real Estate, Hedge Funds, and Tax Practice – Daniel S. Shapiro, Esq. [Deceased] and Allen Waldenburg, Esq.

Paul Weiss, Rifkind, Garrison, and Wharton – Arthur Liman, Esq. [Deceased]

Katten, Muchin Rosenman LLP – Harvey Silets Esq. [Deceased] – [Multiple Clients].

Gould & RatnerGerald A. Weber Esq, and Gail P.  Bley Esq. – [Tishman Speyer Properties].

Williams & Connolly – Jerry Feffer Esq. [Deceased] and James Bruton III, Esq. – [Representation of Leona Helmsley].

Anyone who has been involved in tax practice at a national level in the United States over the past fifty years ought instantly to recognize the contributions of several if not all of this group. I am indebted for what I have learned. I am proud of the contributions we made working together for the successes of our mutual clients without deteriorating into efforts to demonstrate to a client which advisor was brighter, more creative or more aggressive.

Legal Cannabis Support – Clarion Call

During the last week, I happened upon two articles:

What to Look for in a Cannabis Accountant – James Hunt Esq, Harris Bricken

Tax Audit Defense Worth It?David W. Klasing, Esq.

Both of these articles were unfortunately written by very skilled and accomplished tax attorneys who appear to have completely abandoned the “client success comes first” principle that seemed to be second nature to the attorneys named above and so many others with whom I have worked. The authors of these two articles made a deliberate choice in these articles to use a combination of fear-mongering, intimidation and leveraging off of client anxiety to pursue their own enrichment. Demeaning CPA’s enrolled agents and other advisors in the pursuit of self-aggrandizement is not a formula for client success.

Our next post is going to specifically focus on the needs of the cannabis industry and what attorneys and CPAs can do to effectively and efficiently serve those needs.

Legal Cannabis Support – Clarion Call

This post should be read in conjunction with –

Cannabis Biz Tough – Lawyers – CPA’s


Author: abizcannabis

Managing Director & CEO of integrated transactional financial advisory, tax, and technology consulting firm - aBIZinaBOX Inc New York, Chicago, and OaklandCPA.CITP.CISM.CGEIT.CGMAExpertise with: Alt. Investments/Private Equity, Real Estate, Professional Services, CA Cannabis, Tech Start-Ups and Distressed Assets/DebtTechnology Certifications including:Advanced & High Complexity Cloud Integrator AICPA PCPS, CAQ,, IMTA, CITP ISACA CGEIT, CISMState CPA Societies in California, Florida, Illinois, New York and TexasExpertise with Regulatory Compliance - US - HIPAA, FINRA, SEC Rule 17(a)(3)/(4), eDiscovery, FINCEN - EU- EBA, ESMA, EIOPA UK - BoE, PRA, FCA