Cannabis Attorney and Civil Litigator
Fatima Afia is a cannabis attorney and civil litigator at Hiller, PC, with a background in commercial and business litigation, land use and landmarks law matters, and disability insurance law. As a litigator, Fatima was an instrumental member of the litigation team behind Washington v. Barr, a pro-bono lawsuit brought against the federal government that sought to declare the federal law criminalizing cannabis unconstitutional. As part of her work in Washington v. Barr, Fatima led the effort in securing overwhelming amicus support before the U.S. Supreme Court from seven members of Congress, 19 disparate and highly regarded organizations, and two eminent cannabis researchers and scientists. In connection with her disability insurance work, she has helped secure and maintain disability benefits for clients from some of the largest disability insurance companies in the United States, playing a vital role in the firm's successful administrative appeal against Unum Insurance Company which resulted in an award of approximately $1 million in retroactive benefits for the client.
As a cannabis attorney, Fatima assists cannabis clients navigate the legal cannabis and hemp industry in the areas of corporate law and regulatory compliance, business transactions, litigation, and state licensing applications in various jurisdictions including New York, Massachusetts, and New Jersey. Fatima is also a social equity advocate, providing instrumental testimony to the Cannabis Control Commission in Massachusetts in 2019 which resulted in an expedited license application-review process for women-and-minority-owned businesses that were unfairly excluded from the regulatory definition of a social equity applicant. Fatima is also an article contributor for Marijuana Venture, has regularly organized and chaired CLE panels and events for the International Cannabis Bar Association (“INCBA”), and is the Co-Chair of INCBA’s CLE Committee. She was the Moot Court Winner at the Medical Cannabis Conference held at Columbia University in 2019, and in 2021 was named a Rising Star by Super Lawyers Magazine.
Prior to working at Hiller, PC, Fatima attended Brooklyn Law School where she graduated in the top 20% percent of her graduating class.