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Disabled veteran denied a VA mortgage over his marijuana dispensary job in Massachusetts

The Department of Veterans Affairs Building on Vermont Avenue in Washington, D.C. (JeffOnWire/Flickr)

As a benefit of serving in the military, veterans have access to a low-rate mortgage with no money down. One disabled Massachusetts veteran was denied that benefit, though, due to his legal job in the marijuana industry, according to the Boston Globe.

A 35-year-old veteran spoke to the newspaper anonymously to protect his military relationship, but said he was denied a loan in January because he was an assistant manager of a licensed cannabis store.

“I was actually accomplishing a lifelong goal of mine, and then to have it pulled right out from under you at the 11th hour … I was blown away,” he told the Globe. “It was very frustrating and demoralizing.”

While marijuana is legal and several states, it remains illegal federally. The distinction has created many problems including marijuana companies working with banks to secure loans or establish checking or savings accounts.

Marijuana is legal in Massachusetts, but your boss doesn’t have to allow it — yet

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A proposed bill would forbid employers from penalizing or discriminating against an employee for marijuana use outside the office, as long as the employee is not impaired while working.

The veteran, a native of Revere, called his congresswoman, U.S. Rep. Katherine Clark, after being denied the loan, he told the Globe.

Clark’s office, the Globe reported, was told the VA didn’t deem the veteran’s source of income as “stable and reliable.”

Clark vowed to draft a legislative response, however, the veteran remains looking for a home for his wife and two children, and unable to receive a loan he is entitled to as a veteran, he told the Globe.

Cash-heavy marijuana industry faces banking, security challenges

Marijuana businesses are developing creative solutions to the problem of a lack of banking services for a cash-heavy industry.

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© 2019 MassLive.com, Springfield, Mass.

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.