Overview

Our experienced hospitality attorneys provide peace of mind and in-depth legal counsel to business owners and managers.

We understand the enormous pressures those in the hospitality and tourism industry sectors are under, whether from investors, employees, regulators, guests, social media or your competition. At Bond we actively assist our clients in managing these pressures with our legal experience, knowledge of the hospitality industry and familiarity with our clients’ operations.

Read Full Overview >

Breweries, distilleries, wineries and cideries are among the fastest growing businesses in New York and are driving tourism within the state like never before. But with this growth comes numerous challenges—particularly for startups operations.

Alcohol production is among the most highly regulated industries in the United States, with virtually every aspect of the operation subject to federal and state oversight. Whether it’s applying for federal and state manufacturing licenses, seeking formula and label approval, maintaining and filing necessary paperwork or simply avoiding the many regulatory pitfalls hidden within the Federal Alcohol Administration Act and the New York State Alcohol Beverage Control Law, the regulatory environment is fraught with obstacles.

Our attorneys' extensive experience and knowledge of the industry can help ensure that you get off on the right foot and remain in compliance, allowing you to concentrate on what you do best.

We are also there for our clients in other matters that arise in the course of their operations. Thanks to our emphasis on teamwork across our practices and approach to solving problems, we bring the right professionals together to provide targeted guidance on the multiple dimensions of your business. We work with a diverse corporate clientele – from craft microbreweries, distilleries and cideries to major wine and alcohol-distributing corporations. Our attorneys provide a variety of services, including:

  • real estate transactions
  • marketing and advertising issues
  • financing
  • labor and employment matters
  • trademark protection
  • tax compliance
  • trade secret protection
  • corporate governance
  • cybersecurity
  • succession issues

With the enactment of the Marihuana Regulation and Taxation Act (MRTA) in 2021, New York State entered the unsettled legal landscape of the multibillion-dollar cannabis industry, with its complex web of regulations affecting cultivators, retailers, delivery services, employers and municipalities. With the enactment of MRTA, the cannabis space will continue to grow. And that growth brings not only expanded opportunities but also legal challenges in what will be a highly regulated industry.

Bond has long worked with alcohol-industry clients on many of the same issues that the cannabis industry will face, from licensing and regulations to marketing, financing, trademark and copyright protection and more. Bond’s multidisciplinary cannabis team includes attorneys with experience in business, intellectual property, tax, real estate and labor and employment. 

We can assist with:

  • Business formation: creation of by-laws, formation resolutions, creation of company record book, publishing requirements, etc.
  • Compliance with federal and state regulations, including those established by the new NYS Office of Cannabis Management and Cannabis Control Board
  • Compliance with federal and state tax laws, including establishing strategies for addressing the different treatment of income and expenses under state and federal law
  • Business licensing and zoning issues
  • Real estate and land use issues
  • Labor and employment advice and counseling, including workplace issues (e.g., drug testing, collective bargaining agreements) 
  • Negotiating commercial leases and license agreements for office, retail, agriculture and other workspaces
  • Drafting terms and conditions, terms of use, service agreements and privacy policies
  • Intellectual property services, including non-disclosure agreements, trademarks and copyrights
  • Litigation arising from business disputes, regulatory issues or any other commercial litigation that might arise within the industry
  • Debt and equity fundraising, investment and private placements

Representative Matters

  • Counseled cannabis organization on capitalization, corporate structure and financing arrangements
  • Advised cannabis organization on all matters related to submission of applications for licenses to grow, process and/or dispense cannabis in several jurisdictions
  • Represented licensed organization in labor and employment matters, including efforts to establish a union within the licensed organization 
  • Advised existing and new businesses on the utilization and sale of hemp and CBD products, both in their original form and infused into current product offerings
  • Facilitated private equity fundraising deals for a proposed chain of dispensaries in Oregon and Colorado (as many traditional financing options are still unavailable due to the federal prohibition) 
  • Private equity transactions with minority and women owned business enterprises (MWBEs) and service-disabled veteran owned small business (SDVOSB) space where the structuring is important to maintain the control requirements for the certification.

Disclaimer: Even if a state law decriminalizes certain activities relating to marijuana or marijuana-based products, those activities are still illegal under federal law. None of the information provided in these materials is intended to aid any activity that violates federal law.

Our Team:
Caitlin A. Anderson
Michael D. Billok
Samuel P. Burgess
Thomas Clifford
Jeffrey P. Gleason
Charles D. Grieco
Elizabeth L. Lehmann
Lacey C. Miller
Jessica C. Moller
Hannah K. Redmond
Theresa E. Rusnak
Jeffrey B. Scheer
Jennifer L. Tsyn

Operating a hotel is no longer a narrowly focused endeavor; it requires hoteliers to take the major industry disrupters into consideration and integrate a variety of new services to keep pace. As important as "service" is to any successful lodging operation, it is just as important to us in the legal industry; we serve our clients with the same level of attention and professionalism as you would want your front-desk manager exhibiting to your guests.

Our attorneys have worked closely with iconic hotel chains, local and regional hotel operations, resort and spas, casino hotels and boutique hotels on complex and routine legal issues. Whether training your managers in key employment law provisions, defending your establishment against organized labor union petitions, ensuring your hotel entity is structured to obtain valuable tax credits or handling the financing of new construction – we stand shoulder to shoulder with you.

We also help secure the uniqueness of your brand through our intellectual property attorneys who work with you to research and file your marks, and prosecute them if an infraction is detected.

We understand why you’re in the hospitality industry and we want you to succeed.

The kitchens and offices of restaurants operate in a variety of styles, but “slow-paced” is not among them; crises may erupt at any moment. Our attorneys – in addition to providing prompt guidance and counsel – also take the time to understand the unique culture of each of their client’s restaurants, whether a local establishment or national franchise.

Our hospitality group has helped entrepreneurs through the opening phase of their restaurants, as well as guiding and advising them each step of the way.

For a number of our clients, we provide all-encompassing outside counsel legal services, working with owners so they can focus on running their business and maximizing their profits. We work closely with clients undergoing regulatory and environmental audits and defend them before the New York State Department of Health's Bureau of Community Environmental Health and Food Protection. Our litigation team can be ready to act on your behalf against any undesirable decisions or defense of other cases before the courts. We also advise on the myriad of employment issues that restaurant owners face every day, including wage order matters, employee benefits or workplace health and safety issues, to name a few. We are also thought leaders, lecturing on a nearly weekly basis, as well as authoring an award-winning blog on labor and employment law.

Our cross-disciplinary team handles both blockbuster and small-scale matters for our clients in the sports and entertainment industry:

  • Our business attorneys have successfully negotiated numerous leases, construction contracts, vendor agreements, and athlete and team contracts;
  • Our intellectual property practice group files, maintains and defends our clients’ protected trademarks; and
  • Our tax professionals provide our clients with a full range of services involving every level of complexity and sophistication in tax law.

Large scale operations come with large-scale legal issues, which require extraordinary attention to detail. There may be hundreds of contracts worth millions of dollars, negotiated over a span of months or even years. This monumental effort is required before a sports team steps onto its playing field or a group of children onto the grounds of the newest amusement park.

Liability is a central theme. Our team draws from decades of experience spanning litigation of all types, from breach of contract to tort and insurance litigation. We counsel our clients on the most effective strategies to avoid litigation, and if litigation is inevitable, we strive to prevail in an efficient and cost-efficient manner.

The attorneys of our sports and entertainment group are not only thoroughly familiar with these areas of law, but bring a unique perspective to our negotiations and transactions. Members of our group have formerly served as sports agents for professional sports teams and athletes, as well as in-house counsel.

We have a unique understanding of this complex landscape and are ready to help.