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Crime & Law Enforcement Issues & Death Penalty/Can a person legally buy over the counter medication


Can a person legally buy over the counter medication in Canada and resell this in the United States? Those drugs are manufactured by an FDA approved manufacture (FDA approved) and you can buy the exact same medicine legally over the counter at most pharmacies in the United States.


Unfortunately,there is no simple answer to your question. The U.S. tends to have some pretty quirky laws concerning importing of any type of medication into the US - OTC or not. Secondly, it would depend on the type of medication and the quantity you wanted to bring in.

For example, several allergy type medications are OTC in the U.S., but, depending on the presence of (and quantity of) pseudoephedrine, those medications are "controlled" in the U.S. - primarily because pseudoephedrine is a precursor chemical needed to manufacture methamphetamine. Therefore, it is highly unlikely the U.S. would allow you to bring any significant quantity of that type of medication into this country even though it is OTC in both countries.

The best answer would be to call The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Office of Diversion Control, or U.S. Customs (Department of Homeland Security) and get a definitive answer from them when you know what type of medication and how much you want to bring in.

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Kevin M. Tamez


An adjudicated expert in most, if not all, federal/state criminal investigations. Also an adjudicated and CJA approved expert in federal post-conviction advocacy, sentencing mitigation and the federal prison system.


27-years in both state and federal law enforcement.

Bachelor of Arts Degree and Graduate Studies at George Washington University. Graduate of the Northern Virginia Criminal Justice Academy as well as both the Basic and Advanced Special Agent Courses at Quantico, VA.

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