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Legal Status
by Erowid
Caution :   All legal information should be verified through other sources. [see below]
There are a large number of substances which qualify as "Opiates". Below is information on the legal status of opium. For information on the specific status of other opiates, see the schedule listings or Erowid's law page for the specific opiate.

Schedule II
Opium is Schedule II in the United States. This means it is illegal to sell without a DEA license and illegal to buy or possess without a license or prescription.

Opium is specifically listed in Schedule II with the following wording:

1) Opium and opiate, and any salt, compound, derivative, or preparation of opium or opiate excluding apomorphine, thebaine-derived butorphanol, dextrorphan, nalbuphine, nalmefene, naloxone, and naltrexone, and their respective salts, but including the following:

(1) Raw opium 9600
(2) Opium extracts 9610
(3) Opium fluid 9620
(4) Powdered opium 9639
(5) Granulated opium 9640
(6) Tincture of opium

2) Any salt, compound, derivative, or preparation thereof which is chemically equivalent or identical with any of the substances referred to in paragraph (b) (1) of this section, except that these substances shall not include the isoquinoline alkaloids of opium.

3) Opium poppy and poppy straw.

4) [. . .]

5) Concentrate of poppy straw (the crude extract of poppy straw in either liquid, solid or powder form which contains the phenanthrene alkaloids of the opium poppy), 9670.

Until 2000, it had been illegal in the U.S. to prescribe opiates for the management of opiate addiction. In June, 2005, the DEA announced a further loosening of the rules for allowing doctors to prescribe maintenance opiates to addicts: Federal Register Vol 70, Num 120.

Canada #
Opium is schedule I in Canada. (Note: Canadian schedules are very different than U.S. schedules)
If you have information about the legal status of this substance in any other country, please let us know.

Erowid legal information is a summary of data gathered from site visitors, government documents, websites, and other resources. We are not lawyers and can not guarantee the accuracy of the information provided here. We do our best to keep this information correct and up-to-date, but laws are complex and constantly changing. Laws may also vary from one jurisdiction to another (county, state, country, etc)...this list is not comprehensive.