American Express is no longer allowing transactions to be processed at medical marijuana dispensaries nationwide, according to published reports.
A spokesperson told the LA Weeklythat the company made the decision to not allow its credit cards to be accepted for medical marijuana because it is their “policy to adhere to the federal law in such matters.”
The American Independent reported that Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO) plans to introduce legislation to clarify that banks can maintain normal business relationships with legal medical marijuana dispensaries, possibly as soon as this week.
“I haven’t seen it with other credit cards,” Aaron Smith, executive director of the National Cannabis Industry Association, said. “I don’t understand why they would turn their back on a $2 billion industry. It’s perplexing.”
The company has given no explain of its decision, but Dennis Romero of LA Weekly believes the decision may be a result of businesses complaining about the credit cards they issue to employees being used to purchase marijuana. Ilana Greene of Business Insider added that American Express may have received a high number of fraudulent charges from medical marijuana dispensaries, thanks to thieves using stolen cards to try to buy marijuana.
Raw Story is a progressive news site that focuses on stories often ignored in the mainstream media. While giving coverage to the big stories of the day, we also bring our readers' attention to policy, politics, legal and human rights stories that get ignored in an infotainment culture driven solely by pageviews.
Founded in 2004, Raw Story reaches 5 million unique readers per month and serves more than 19 million pageviews.