Medical Marijuana and Employee Benefit Funds

In May 2019 Employee Benefits Shareholder Elizabeth Manzo spoke at the International Foundation of Employee Benefits Plans’ Heatlhcare Management Conference on the topic of medical marijuana and how changes in state laws will impact employers and benefit funds.

Kenneth Corbin wrote an overview of Elizabeth’s presentation for Employee Benefit News titled, Will Medical Marijuana Become Part of Your Benefits Mix.

Many health plans might not want to touch marijuana with a 10-foot pole, but it might be time to start thinking differently about including cannabis in the benefit mix.

So argues Elizabeth Manzo, an attorney with Lindabury, McCormick, Estabrook & Cooper based in New Jersey who specializes in benefits law with a focus on funds in the construction sector.

“Should your fund cover marijuana products?” Manzo said recently in a presentation at a conference hosted by the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans. “We have that conversation, and then I will tell you that most of my construction funds are kind of, ‘Heck no,’ but I wonder if that’s not where the conversation may be going in the future as you continue to see kind of this evolution and this change in feeling about marijuana.”

In surveying the dozens of states that have been moving toward decriminalizing or legalizing marijuana for medicinal or recreational purposes, Manzo sees a seismic shift under way.


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