John McDonald

John is an experienced litigator in Harris Bricken’s Seattle office. He represents clients in complex commercial, insurance, and partnership matters. John practices in both state and federal courts and advises his clients from the inception of a matter through arbitration and trial. He has successfully drafted and argued many motions, he has extensive deposition experience, and he has experience in a variety of alternative-dispute resolution fora.

cannabis property seized at the border

Customs Seized Our Cannabis Related Property. What’s Next?

The intersection of state and federal law on cannabis has led to some interesting situations at the border, especially where cannabis related property is seized. States such as Washington, Oregon, and California have legalized cannabis for all uses, while the federal Controlled Substances Act still prohibits marijuana distribution and sale anywhere in the United States.

cannabis business insurance

Our Cannabis Business Insurer Denied Our Claim. What’s Next?

Like companies in any other industry, licensed cannabis companies typically carry insurance and sometimes find themselves at odds with their cannabis business insurers. Those companies purchase a policy to cover a specific risk for a stated premium and when that risk presents itself, their business insurers suddenly have fine-print explanations for everything. In these situations,

insure cannabis investment

How to Insure Cannabis Financing

Many investors and cannabis businesses are keen on opportunities to participate in financing rounds. As with any other investment or business venture, financing rounds for cannabis operations carry various risks. Investors and businesses looking to participate in these financing rounds naturally wonder how to insure cannabis financing, and what insurance options are available to protect

suing a cannabis insurer

Suing Your Cannabis Insurer? Choose Your Battleground Wisely

If you are suing your cannabis insurer, read this first. The venue in which you plan to file is of the utmost importance. The status of marijuana as a schedule I narcotic has made cannabis insurance litigation a bit of a chess match. Many cannabis businesses enjoy the benefits of state legalization and the ability

stolen cannabis insurance coverage

A “How To” on Insurance for Marijuana Theft in Transit

These days, marijuana is constantly on the move in states with marijuana legal reform. As a result, marijuana theft in transit is not unusual (see here and here for example). Typically, licensees have to transport marijuana themselves or a licensed distributor does it on their behalf. Some of these companies may carry their own insurance

cannabis insurance reserve rights

My Cannabis Business Insurer Reserved Rights. What Does That Mean?

Many insurance coverage issues in the cannabis space are relatively new. From fire protection at farms to theft protection in transit, policyholders and insurers alike are facing novel situations applied to old policy language. In the insurance world, when a new or complicated situation presents itself, many insurers will conditionally accept coverage under a “reservation

My Insurer Is Stonewalling: Can I Get Attorneys’ Fees For That? (In Washington, You Might)

My Cannabis Business Insurer Is Stonewalling: Can I Get Attorneys’ Fees For That? (In Washington, You Might)

Insurance issues in the cannabis space are multiplying daily as operations continue to expand across United States markets. Cannabis companies face the risk of operational losses as a result of fires, burglary, business interruptions, and myriad other events. Cannabis companies also pay hefty premiums on insurance policies to cover those very losses. Many companies discover,

cannabis insurance coverage litigation

Cannabis Insurance and Coverage Disputes

Legal representation in disputes with insurers has become paramount for cannabis companies in an ever-expanding operational environment. Cannabis companies may seek to insure against risk of loss as a result of challenges such as unexpected fires, crop protection, business interruption, or adverse consumer reactions to products. In many instances, cannabis companies are even required to