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Psilocybin Law


The Future of Psilocybin Law

As research continues to demonstrate the value of psilocybin in treating mental health conditions, the legal landscape is beginning to evolve accordingly. Both the federal government and state governments are reconsidering their psilocybin laws and regulations, paving the way for psilocybin medicines and even the eventual recreational use of the drug. Harris Sliwoski is a leader in this exciting and fast-moving area, helping businesses understand the legal landscape and pursue new opportunities with confidence.

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Changes to the Legal Status of Psilocybin

The loosening of restrictions on psilocybin is progressing on two fronts. Similar to cannabis, the first major changes to the legal status of psilocybin mushrooms and related drugs have occurred in the medical context. While it remains illegal to possess, sell, or use psilocybin at the federal level, federal criminalization of psilocybin appears increasingly outdated. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recognized psilocybin’s potential as a treatment for depression, granting its Breakthrough Therapy designation to two drugs developed for that purpose. These drugs, and any others that receive this designation in the future, will benefit from expedited development and review.

This focus on psilocybin’s mental health benefits was the driving force behind Oregon’s legalization of psilocybin in 2020. Though prescriptions and doctors’ referrals are not required, the state is limiting the administration and use of the drug to licensed psilocybin therapy centers. As the first state to permit psilocybin and establish a program for its use, Oregon serves as an example for other states considering their own approaches. Psilocybin treatment centers and the potential for FDA-approved psilocybin drugs present enormous business opportunities for companies, investors, and entrepreneurs.

The second path forward for psilocybin is the decriminalization or legalization of recreational use. The next steps on this front are less clear than in the medical context. However, many local governments are leading the way by downgrading psilocybin as a law enforcement priority.

These actions by local governments across the country signal a growing acceptance of psilocybin use. If psilocybin continues to follow the pattern of cannabis, we may eventually see recreational use decriminalized or legalized at the state level. This would present another set of opportunities for psilocybin-focused businesses.

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Lawyers Experienced in Psilocybin Laws

Harris Sliwoski is uniquely positioned to assist companies and individuals in this area. We were among the first law firms to establish a cannabis practice and we have been leaders in cannabis law and policy for more than a decade. Building on that expertise we created our psychedelics practice, which addresses similarly complex legal and regulatory issues for businesses. We regularly analyze these and other topics on our Psychedelics Law Blog.

We combine our deep understanding of the law with a commitment to providing our clients with advice that allows them to pursue their goals prudently and aggressively. Our services in the psilocybin law space include:

  • Providing advice on forming the legal entity best suited to your business’s goals
  • Continuing support with corporate administration and governance
  • Registering and protecting your intellectual property
  • Negotiating and drafting contracts and technology-related agreements
  • Navigating applicable licensing requirements
  • Providing counsel and advice on regulatory matters

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Surrounding Psilocybin

psychedelics law blog


An intelligent, timely resource for the Psilocybin industry

Harris Sliwoski’s psychedelic business lawyers are more than legal strategists—they are thought leaders: forward-thinking bloggers, educators, writers, and speakers.

We speak to business and trade groups, academic institutions, and government bodies on a variety of psychedelic legal issues, and our lawyers are frequently quoted by global, national, and local media outlets.

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Get in Touch with Our Psilocybin Law Team

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