Our Research Methodology for Hemp and Cannabis Compliance Guides

Hemp and Cannabinoid Laws: In order to produce our state-by-state guides to hemp and cannabinoid laws and regulations, we read through all relevant state laws that have either been passed or were still pending at the time of writing, as well as promulgated regulations, draft regulations and agency guidance, in addition to the 2018 Farm Bill. The relevant laws were read in their entirety, cross-referencing with other pieces of legislation where needed.

Generally speaking, we focused on some key areas for each state:

  1. Does the state have a commercial hemp program?
  2. Is “hemp” defined in line with the 2018 Farm Bill, or are there differences in the definition?
  3. Is hemp exempted from the state’s controlled substances bill for both marijuana/cannabis and THC?
  4. Are there exemptions to a state’s food laws that carve out hemp ingredients as an adulterant?
  5. Are there any specific restrictions on the sale of products for human consumption that would affect delta-8 THC or other intoxicating hemp cannabinoids? E.g. is it illegal to sell products created through isomerization?
  6. Is delta-8 THC or other intoxicating hemp products practically available in the state? Despite state law, hemp-derived THC is still sold as hemp in some states where sales are not legal. Likewise, in some places it is theoretically available in the state marijuana industry, but practically there are very few or no products for sale.
  7. Are there any relevant outstanding legal actions in the state?

Based on the research and the answers to these questions, we produced short paragraphs detailing the law in each state, which are being expanded in specific articles about each state.

Following the initial draft, the content was checked for accuracy by Neil Willner, co-chair of the Cannabis Group at Royer Cooper Cohen Braunfeld. Based on the feedback and suggestions, laws were re-checked and the content was updated accordingly, until the content was agreed to be accurate.


The state-by-state guides will be continuously updated and reviewed as the situation changes. While this should ensure essentially continuous accuracy, there may be short delays as we work through the above process for any new changes.

Learn more about our editorial guidelines.


The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice or reliable statements of the status of any laws. The laws are different from state to state and are constantly evolving.

If you have any questions or feedback, please email us at [email protected].