US Supreme Court passes – again – on hearing IRS marijuana lawsuits

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The U.S. Supreme Court confirmed for a second time that it will not enter the legal fray between a number of marijuana businesses and the IRS.

According to Law360, the nation’s highest court again declined to hear appeals from Standing Akimbo and Eric Speidell, who owns The Green Solution and other marijuana businesses, in a long-running fight over the impact Section 280E of the federal tax code has on the cannabis sector.

The Colorado plaintiffs had attempted to persuade the justices that their cases were worth hearing in the wake of:

  • Justice Clarence Thomas’ comments in June that federal marijuana prohibition “may no longer be necessary.”
  • Allegations that the IRS had retaliated against the plaintiffs with additional tax assessments.

Standing Akimbo tried to argue that the IRS had no right to the company’s state tax records during the course of a federal tax audit.

Speidell tried to convince the courts that the IRS didn’t have the legal authority to determine if The Green Solution’s operations were prohibited under federal law and the Controlled Substances Act.

Both cases were attempts at overturning 280E, the federal tax provision that bars marijuana businesses from claiming standard tax deductions.

The cases now appear to be at an end, after both plaintiffs lost at the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals last year and have now been denied hearings twice by the U.S. Supreme Court, Law360 reported.