Marijuana businesses have a hard time handling their money, because most banks won’t take it. Contrary to popular belief, it is not at all illegal for federally regulated banks to take money from marijuana businesses, but they refuse to do it. One bank in Florida helped mostly solve this problem in the state when it decided to take deposits from cannabis businesses, a bank called First Green Bank (not for the reasons you think), but that era appears to be over.

According to the Miami Herald, the community bank will stop doing business with marijuana companies in January. Representatives from the bank have assured the press another institution will take its place, but no details have been released about that. The Miami Herald reports that a larger institution is buying First Green Bank, and its owners didn’t want to buy a bank that has cannabis industry clients.

“It’s an important initiative for us to act as a safe harbor for professionals in the cannabis industry,” First Green Bank said in a statement. “However, we have made the tough business decision to end our medical cannabis business practices and have an alternative solution for banking in place for our customers in the industry.”

With recreational sales about to begin in California, the largest state to legalize, the state is also trying to grapple with the banking problem. Because of its size, whatever decision is made in California may change how other states operate. Nationwide legalization seems like an easy to this problem.

[Photo by Yourowgirl/Wikimedia]

About The Author

Thor Benson is a traveling writer currently based in Los Angeles. His writing has been featured in Vice, The Atlantic, The Daily Beast and elsewhere. He can be found in a run-down whiskey bar. Follow him on Twitter at: @thor_benson.

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