Providing Honest, Reliable Business Counsel For 29 Years

Preeminent Counsel In Business, And Cannabis Law and Regulatory/Criminal Defense

Operating a business successfully takes more than one person. It requires an attorney who can offer guidance for formation, regulatory compliance, dispute resolution, transactions,  tax audits and more.  This is particularly so in a highly regulated industry such as the cannabis sector.

At Chernis Law Group P.C., you will have the sophisticated and cohesive counsel you need from an attorney who has more than 25 years of experience as an attorney and 12 years of experience handling the unique problems confronting individuals and businesses engaged in the cannabis sector.

Founder Michael S. Chernis has a unique background.  For 12 years he worked for some of the leading “big law” firms in Manhattan doing high states corporate litigation, and defense in white collar criminal cases and regulatory enforcement matters.  He was trained by some of the best lawyers in the profession, many former federal prosecutors.  As a result he has a tenacious work-ethic, creative approach to problem-solving and unparalleled commitment to his clients, his work product, and achieving the best result possible given the circumstances of the matter.

In 2008, upon moving to California and pursuing a love for surfing, Michael brought his work ethic and big-firm training to the burgeoning Los Angeles and California cannabis sector. At that time the practice was at the intersection of criminal defense and business law and thus a perfect fit for his skill-set. He is thus one of the first attorneys in the Country to provide legal services in the cannabis business space, and has maintained that focus for last 12+ years has cannabis law evolved from a joke amongst mainstream colleagues to a cutting edge area of the law.

As the cannabis legal sector has grown and become more cluttered,  Michael remains not only one of its founders but also one of its stalwarts, both among colleagues and clients.  He is frequently retained as an expert in civil litigation disputes pertaining to cannabis law and asked to speak at cannabis law seminars, particularly on issues concerning the legality of Industrial Hemp derivatives, 280E and federal enforcement policy and MAUCRSA. He was recently asked to draft a public comment letter (click to read the PDF) for the Los Angeles County Bar Association related to the Revised Proposed Consolidated Cannabis Regulations filed by the Department of Cannabis Control on July 6, 2022.

Cannabis law has become more specialized in recent years and while many lawyers promote themselves as generalists, Michael will only take on a matter if he feels he can be of service to the client. Both within cannabis law and beyond, he handles a broad range of sub-specialties, including:

  • Corporate law
  • Transactions
  • Regulatory Compliance
  • License acquisition and application (Cannabis specific)
  • Civil litigation
  • Criminal defense, particularly for cannabis offenses
  • Governmental investigations
  • Regulatory Enforcement
  • 280E Audit defense
  • Business and regulatory issues for products containing hemp, CBD, or non-Delta 9 THC cannabinoids

Read more about his credentials here:

One Of California’s Leading Cannabis Lawyers

Cannabis is a booming industry that can prove incredibly lucrative – if you have the right attorney to counsel you. Mr. Chernis is one of the longest-serving cannabis lawyers in Southern California. As a result, he has an extraordinary understanding of federal and state cannabis laws. If the state has accused you of violating a drug law, he can help you resolve the problem and remain in compliance.

Counsel For Your Business Or Cannabis Matter

Whether you are a business owner, grower, supplier or investor, you can benefit from the extensive legal acumen of Michael S. Chernis. To speak with him about representation, contact his office to schedule an appointment. To begin, call him at 310-558-2346 or send him an email.