Arkansas Medical Marijuana Business Sues Former Counsel For Botching Licensing Applications

Plaintiffs Holistic Industries of Arkansas, LLC, doing business as Sisters of Empathy (Holistic), and its majority member have filed suit against Feuerstein Kulick LLP (Feuerstein) for its alleged negligent handling of Holistic’s state marijuana cultivation and dispensary license applications. The complaint, filed in the Eastern District of Arkansas last week, alleges that the law firm committed malpractice by failing to ensure that the plaintiff’s applications met the legal standard.

According to the complaint, Holistic engaged the services of New York-based Feuerstein to help prepare and submit its licensing applications by September 8, 2017. Feuerstein and its attorneys allegedly “held themselves out to Holistic as experts in the field of medical marijuana application compliance, authorized to practice law in the State of Arkansas, and free of conflicts for the representation.”

Holistic claims that it expended “extraordinary” amounts of time and money preparing and drafting its applications. The plaintiff reportedly hired professional consultants to “assist them in preparing their applications to receive the highest merit scoring in order to obtain cultivation and dispensary licenses.”

Despite Holistic’s efforts, however, the complaint contends that Feuerstein failed to ensure that the applications met the “minimum qualifications for merit scoring” as provided by law. The state’s oversight body determined that Holistic’s applications did not satisfy the requirements and subsequently disqualified them.

Holistic argues that, as a result, it was deprived of the opportunity to receive medical marijuana cultivation and dispensary licenses. To remediate the alleged legal malpractice, Holistic requests a jury trial and a judgment of more than $5 million, plus interest.

The plaintiff is represented by Murphy, Thompson, Arnold, Skinner & Castleberry.