RANCHO CORDOVA (CBS13) — The business of growing marijuana is generating opportunities for other businesses, including a local insurance company cashing in on the green.
Mike Aberle of GP Insurance Brokers offers a variety of policies, but there’s one that’s considered one of a kind.
“We offer coverages outside the norm,” he said. “We offer crop coverage. We cover your living plants.”
People are looking for coverage for their pot plants, businesses and dispensaries.
“Lately it’s been an explosion,” he said. “We’re receiving 20-25 applications a day.”
The Rancho Cordova business sells marijuana crop insurance to business owners across the country, and business is booming. Right now, if offers everything from general liability to theft to more than 6,000 clients nationwide, and they’re hoping to hire 40 to 70 more people.
“We’re looking to expand,” he said. “We have our accounting, our processing services.”
The average premium for a marijuana business owner is $700 per year. People who grow at home aren’t eligible for coverage.
There are 20 states and the District of Columbia allowing people to use marijuana with a doctor’s recommendation. Colorado and Washington legalized marijuana for recreational use this year.
“We also have several states that are getting ready to pass, so we’re already accepting their applications so we can start the process,” he said.
And if local cops raid the marijuana growing business? There’s coverage for that, too.
“If a state agency or lesser came in and that person was found innocent, in the end we pay, because it wasn’t an illegal action,” Aberle said.
Marijuana is still illegal under federal law, but under certain circumstances, the Justice Department says it’s not challenging states’ marijuana laws.
But if the FBI comes knocking, business owners are still on their own.
“When it comes to federal, you can’t cover federal because it’s illegal and we’d all go to jail for insuring an illegal operation,” he said.