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The lack of federal legalization of marijuana creates an interesting legal dichotomy for insurers. (Photo: Shutterstock)

Medical marijuana is currently legal in 29 states and the District of Columbia, with legalization pending in two additional states. Attempts to legalize it failed this year in 13 states, and it is still considered a Schedule 1 controlled substance on the federal level. Recreational use of marijuana is currently legal in eight states.

The increase in legalization has created a new industry for grow operations and a number of coverage issues for insurers willing to insure these enterprises that are legal on a state level, but considered illegal by the federal government. Part of the challenge stems from a lack of actuarial information in order to assess and price the risks associated with these farming operations.

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Patricia L. Harman

Patricia L. Harman is the editor-in-chief of Claims magazine, a contributing editor to PropertyCasualty360.com, and chairs the annual America's Claims Event (ACE), which focuses on providing claims professionals with cutting-edge education and networking opportunities. She covers auto, property & casualty, workers' compensation, fraud, risk and cybersecurity, and is a frequent speaker at insurance industry events. Contact her at [email protected]

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