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Is Modafinil Legal? #1 Guide for All Countries

Nearly all people around the world can have the benefits of buying modafinil online. However, some individuals find it very difficult to get the pharmaceutical product due to the stringent country-specific customs rules and drug usage laws.

Modafinil Legality

If interested in knowing the legality of modafinil in your country, this guide is the best for you, as it addresses all the basic facts about modafinil, its legality country by country, the possibility of buying it online, and as usual, our verdict of modafinil legality and usage.

Let’s get to know the facts!

Basic Facts About Modafinil Legality

Indeed, modafinil is a drug that does wonders. People with sleep disorders have bid goodbye to drowsiness, while others, the healthy population, often use it off-label as a very powerful productivity enhancer or to augment their brainpower.

However, unlike Panadol that you can possess and use it to treat aches & pains as well as to reduce fever, can you possess and use modafinil anytime you want? Although anybody can use this product, it’s not that easy and many factors are considered.

Modafinil is considered the safest nootropic ever designed. It’s favored by tech professionals from around the world since it helps them solve complex programming tasks as well as in cases where competition is die-hard. Students also use it to augment their brain function to pass exams and get good grades needed for certification. This revelation has delved into concerns whether modafinil is a legal drug. Indeed, it has more advantages than disadvantages, but various countries prohibit its usage and country-specific laws are governing it.

Modafinil Smart Pills

The likelihood of facing any Moda legal issues has challenged several people – especially the healthy populations who need to get their hand on this med and are brand new to the nootropics scene. Competitions and striving for excellence are indeed a target for every individual, especially if involved in highly competitive careers, and the only savior is a brain-boosting med like modafinil. Its benefits are really undeniable. However, fear around this drug’s legality has stopped people from trying this powerful “smart pill” just to experience its ameliorated brainpower benefits for themselves.

This article is tailored with the sole purpose of putting your worries & fears to rest. By reading to the end, you’ll know if modafinil is legal for you to possess and how you can avoid risks if deciding to purchase it online.

So the answer is entirely dependent on which country you are living in & its regulations regarding modafinil’s distribution, purchase, & personal use. Indeed, you can import it for personal use into the United States and Morocco with a prescription. Ecuador is one of the few nations across the globe where it’s 100% legal to stroll into a local pharmacy and purchase modafinil or import it without an Rx.

Convinced? Keep reading this guide. Later in another section, we’ll give the legality of modafinil based on various countries and whether you can possess and use it for your end needs.

Now the big question!

Is It Legal to Buy Modafinil Online?

The direct answer is YES and NO. “Smart pill” enthusiasts seeking a competitive advantage through brainpower augmentation can get this drug with or without a prescription.

Prescription Pills

The first two possible outcomes that may arise if you attempt to purchase Moda online & have it shipped to your doorstep include:

  • smooth parcel shipping: Indeed, officials doing their job at border agencies don’t investigate an individual package thoroughly before allowing it to go through;
  • the border officers may find out that the shopper’s parcel contains modafinil & seize it. If this happens, a customer will receive a seizure letter from their country’s border agency requesting valid proof of a legit prescription for modafinil.

If modafinil is seized, there are two options:

  • a shopper may elect to do nothing in reaction to the customs notice. In this case, modafinil (which is a controlled substance) will be considered relinquished after 30 days & destroyed;
  • a receiver of the package may elect to request that Customs and Border Protection (CBP) commences seizure & forfeiture proceedings to permit the owner to engage in a formal legal process to petition for the return of the property.

The option is determined by the modafinil owner. When a parcel is held at customs, it may be a hard thing to go through. But don’t worry! You always have the safest option of inaction. Just leave it. In other words, never attempt to reply to the customs letter so that the officials’ will automatically assume you opt for the first option – to do nothing.

The third outcome is that your government could legally prosecute you for illegally purchasing & importing Moda to your country of residence. Indeed, if this happens, it’s the worst-case scenario! However, this act has never happened in the US, Australia, and other western countries.

Despite all this, several published scientific research reveals that the “smart drug” is readily available for purchase online by anyone without a prescription. Moreover, it can be bought at the lowest cost & delivered to your address much faster [1] [2].

What Is the Reality?

Regarding the legality of modafinil, what’s the reality? Here are the real facts you acquaint yourself about real-world risks analogous with getting modafinil online.

The fact is you will not get arrested if you order the “smart pill” online & import it for personal use. However, you may be arrested if you endeavor to sell tabs or share them with another person. The real challenge is when trying to get modafinil delivered to your doorstep. Shoppers may encounter certain situations leading to legal difficulties with purchasing this drug online.

Buy Pills Online

Although it rarely happens, there was an instance involving individuals importing modafinil for personal use in Japan. However, these guys were importing more than 100 tabs at a time [3]. With a doctor’s prescription, the shopper is legally permitted to import no more than 6 g (~60 pills of 100 mg modafinil) [4].

Another instance involves individuals who attempted to import huge amounts of modafinil pills in China. In Qingdao Customs District, the Post Customs Office intercepted ten cases of this drug, totaling a thousand pills & 1.2 kg in a parcel sent from India [5]. There can also be instances where the “smart drug” is packaged with other meds, as with the case of 140,000 illegal tabs sent through the postal system around the globe including Northern Ireland [6].

There can be several other circumstances. However, we are yet to perceive anyone getting arrested for using the Internet to order “smart pills” for personal use.

Indeed, a new federal law gives the FDA sole authority to destroy personally imported meds that are regulated, but not without notifying the owner first and providing them with suitable due process & opportunity to obtain their prescription drug order if possible [7].

The fact is nobody has ever been prosecuted for importing meds for their personal use. While the local government could legally prosecute you by following the law, there is a next-to-zero possibility of this happening. It is not concerned with your “smart pill” usage & is more focused on seizing dangerous illicit substances such as heroin, cocaine, & marijuana.

Despite all these cases, an estimate of about 1% of all “smart pill” orders placed online involve confiscation, as very few incoming shopper parcels get flagged down for additional inspection [8].

There is a sure way of getting a smart pill online. You will not experience any of these issues if you purchase this nootropic from reputable, reliable, and legitimate online modafinil vendors such as ModafinilXL.com, BuyModafinilOnline.com, BuyModa.org, and Afinil.com selling only quality and genuine pharmaceutical products.

These vendors have excellent shopper reviews and do what they promise. They offer generic modafinil and armodafinil drugs, which are as equally influential as Provigil® and Nuvigil® respectively, at a more affordable price. These generics are produced by approved and legitimate Indian pharmaceutical companies such as Intas Pharmaceuticals, Sun Pharma, Healing Pharma, and HAB Pharma, which possess multiple global manufacturing certifications.

To avoid seizure at customs, the aforementioned e-pharmacies deliver your parcel in discreet packaging that keeps your desired privacy safe & passes the immense majority of spot checks. If you examine the exterior packaging, you won’t see “modafinil” imprinted on the label! Nonetheless, this isn’t a 100% sure way of escaping border checks. There can be a few unusual cases where the shopper order still gets seized. However, in case of such experiences, these vendors will instantly offer you a 100% refund or send you another shipment. You solemnly get to decide!

Modafinil Legality: Country-by-Country Guide

As mentioned, various countries have various drug importation and usage laws. Now, what do you need to know about using modafinil in your country?

Laws of Different Countries

Without further ado, let’s get to know about the legality of this nootropic in various countries across the world where it is popular.

Country Legal Status of Modafinil Comments
USA A Schedule IV controlled substance [9] It has a low potential for abuse. Besides, it is illegal to import by anyone other than a DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) registered importer without a prescription.

However, an individual may legally bring the nootropic into the U.S. in person from a foreign country, provided that there’s a prescription for it and the med is properly declared at the border crossing. The U.S. residents are limited to 50 tabs [10].

Australia A Schedule 4 medicine An individual requires a medical specialist’s prescription to purchase the nootropic.
United Kingdom (UK) A prescription-only medication In the UK, it’s not listed in the Misuse of Drugs Act, so possession is not illegal, but a prescription is required [11].

According to the European Medicines Agency (EMA), the use of modafinil should be restricted to medicate only sleepiness associated with narcolepsy. It should no longer be used as a remedy for chronic shift work sleep disorder (SWSD) or obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) [12].

Canada A Schedule F prescription med Modafinil in Canada is not listed in the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act [13]. However, it is a Schedule F prescription med, so it is subject to seizure by Canada Border Services Agency [14].
Finland An Rx-only drug In this country, modafinil is not listed as a controlled substance. However, to shop for this medication, one should have a valid prescription.
Ireland A prescription-only med Modafinil isn’t listed as a controlled substance in the Misuse of Drugs Acts, but a doctor’s approval is required to get this med. According to the Health Products Regulatory Authority in Ireland, the nootropic may only be prescribed to adult patients with excessive drowsiness due to narcolepsy.
Singapore An unregistered health product In Singapore, the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) is the regulating body that controls the supply of health products in its territories. According to it, modafinil is not available in this country, but you may import it into Singapore provided it has been prescribed by your overseas doctor [15]. Also, up to a max of 3 month’s supply of the medication can be brought into Singapore for personal use.

While modafinil is not included in the HSA’s list of psychotropic substances, the HSA warned Singaporeans not to consume this drug. This is in accordance with a February 2018 press release [16]. The HSA counsels that the supply & sale of an unregistered health product such as modafinil is an offense under the Health Products Act. If convicted, an individual can face a fine of up to $50,000 or a jail term up to two years or both.

Germany A prescription-only med While you’ll need a prescription to get this pill from a local pharmacy, it seems that the ownership is not illegal in this country. In our understanding, German officials do not consider modafinil ownership like a street substance such as a narcotic. This means that if found in possession of modafinil for personal use without a prescription, the authorities will not arrest you, as it is not perceived in the same light as cocaine or heroin.
Argentina An Rx medication Modafinil is sold with a prescription under the brand name Vigicer [17] and it is regulated.
Philippines A prescription-only drug Buying this “smart pill,” either in a local pharmacy or via online vendors, in this country is technically illegal without a valid prescription.
Denmark A prescription-only medication The Danish Medicines Agency approved modafinil for use in the treatment of narcolepsy. The body also endorses this medicine as a 3rd- or 4th-line therapy for ADHD. Besides, various individuals suffering from any of the conditions mentioned above will have no problem getting it in Denmark if they have a valid prescription [18][19].
Thailand An unregistered health product The Narcotics Control Division of the Thai Food and Drug Administration (FDA), inclusive of the website of the Ministry of Public Health, depicts that modafinil isn’t classified as a narcotic drug or psychotropic substance as per the country’s Narcotics Act B.E. 2522 [20].

It’s possible to order or carry up a 30-day supply of modafinil pills for personal use without a permit from the Thai FDA. Nonetheless, as a requirement, there might be a need to present a doctor’s prescription containing the patient’s name as well as the symptoms and sickness that requires modafinil use.

Peru A non-prescription drug As in several other Latin American nations, generics of modafinil are readily obtainable over the counter.
Italy A prescription-only medication Pharmaceutical drug sales are regulated by the Agenzia Italiano del Farmaco using the guidance of more widespread pharmaceutical regulatory bodies such as the EMA to ascertain the legal status of various meds. As per the recommendations of the EMA, modafinil should be used in the treatment of narcolepsy only.

This remedy is illegal to order within Italy without a prescription, but little is done to prevent individuals from ordering this nootropic drug or related pharmaceuticals online.

The Italian border officials inspect orders entering its country. Nonetheless, this is a rare occurrence. The vast majority of modafinil orders are allowed through the Italian border to arrive at their final destination without issues.

Czech Republic An Rx medicine It’s legal to purchase modafinil with a valid prescription for the treatment of certain sleep disorders like narcolepsy.
China A Class I psychotropic drug Modafinil is strictly controlled like its alternative stimulants such as methylphenidate as well as amphetamines. It’s only prescribed by a physician who has the right to prescribe narcotics & Class I psychotropic meds through special inspection. They can only prescribe it for no more than 3-day use (or 7-day use for control/extend-release products) [10].
Bulgaria A prescription-only drug Since Bulgaria is part of the European Union, drug usage rules are governed by the EMA [21]. Due to this, one can get modafinil only when submitting a doctor’s approval and only for the treatment of narcolepsy.
Romania An Rx-only medicine Romania is an EU country & is fully subject to the EMA rules.
Hong Kong An unregistered substance There is no registered pharmaceutical product containing modafinil active substance that is being sold in local pharmacies in Hong Kong [22]. However, if visiting this region, an individual is allowed to bring a 30-day supply of this nootropic with themselves, but only under one condition: a valid prescription is required.
Russia A Schedule II controlled substance The product is banned for personal use & the majority of medical uses as well. Possession of a few tabs can lead to 3–10 years imprisonment. Due to this, modafinil is not legal to purchase in Russia or to import from overseas.
Austria A prescription-only med It’s legal to purchase this medication with a medical specialist’s approval for the treatment of several sleep disorders.
Spain An Rx-only remedy In this country, modafinil is legal if a patient has a prescription from a local physician. It may be prescribed to those suffering from extreme daytime sleepiness due to certain sleep disorders.
Greece A Schedule D substance Modafinil is considered a drug with low potential for abuse. It’s obtained under the brand name Modiodal and can be bought only with an Rx.
Mexico An Rx-only med Buying modafinil in Mexico is legal if you have a prescription. It isn’t listed as a controlled substance in the National Health Law.
Netherlands An Rx-only substance As a member of the EU, the Netherlands has med laws very similar to the rest of Europe.
Switzerland A prescription-only med To legally get this drug, one should have a doctor’s approval. A physician may prescribe it to a patient who suffers from excessive daytime sleepiness associated with narcolepsy.
Sweden A Schedule IV substance The possession of the nootropic without a prescription is considered illegal.
Poland A prescription-only med A person can purchase this remedy only if they have a doctor’s approval.
Chile A prescription-only med If ordered without a prescription, there’s a chance that border security officials will confiscate the parcel until a prescription is submitted. This rarely happens. Modafinil isn’t one of the meds border security officials are looking to stop from crossing the border.
Portugal An Rx drug An individual suffering from narcolepsy can easily get a prescription from a doctor and buy the med in a local pharmacy.
Belgium A prescription med Belgium is a member of the EU, so it has strict laws regarding selling medications. No Belgian pharmacist will sell you modafinil without an Rx. In this country, it is only prescribed for treating a specific sleep disorder – narcolepsy.
New Zealand (NZ) A Schedule 1 controlled substance [23] It is legal to purchase & use modafinil with a valid doctor’s prescription. It is licensed here for the therapy of OSA, narcolepsy, and shift work sleep disorder (SWSD). If you are coming to NZ & carry a modafinil prescription, you must properly declare it at the border crossing [24].
France A prescription-only med Once an individual has an Rx from a physician, they can legally get and use this “smart pill” without any issues.
Japan A Schedule I psychotropic med Cephalon licensed Alfresa Corporation to produce & Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma to market modafinil under the brand-name Modiodal in Japan. Also, there have been reported arrests of individuals who imported this product for personal use [25].

As seen in the table, nearly all countries worldwide require a prescription of modafinil. The only way to get an Rx is if you can medically prove you are suffering from one of the health conditions we discussed earlier. Proving means undergoing a series of sleep tests to effectively diagnose you as having OSA, SWSD, or narcolepsy.

The Verdict: Is Modafinil Legal?

Based on the factual info we have gathered thus far, we can conclude that modafinil is legal in most countries. Thus, it’s possible to buy it as a remedy for certain sleep disorders either in a local pharmacy or from an online vendor with a prescription. However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t purchase the “smart pill” without any real-world risks. If you don’t have a prescription, getting it from trustworthy e-pharmacies that promise to ship to your country is the best action to perform. The only reason to worry is customs clearance. A parcel can be held at customs and a prescription will be requested before being cleared. Nonetheless, you cannot be arrested if you assume the experience and converse with the vendor asking for a refund or another reshipment.

References

  1. The availability and acquisition of modafinil on the internet. By Suat Dursun, Matthew Dunn, and Fiona H. McKay. Published: September 2019. Pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov.
  2. The Availability of Modafinil and Methylphenidate Purchased from the Internet in the United Kingdom Without a Prescription. By Joanna Hockenhull, David M. Wood, Paul I. Dargan. Published: August 20, 2019. Pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov.
  3. Japan – news (in Japanese) of actual arrests of people who have imported Modafinil from India. By wolframite. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Reddit.com.
  4. Japan – Medications, medicine and drugs in Japan. Last updated: February 2020. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Japan.aoimirai.net.
  5. Qingdao Customs Seizes 1,000 Modafinil Pills Posted from Abroad. Published: October 9, 2019. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. English.customs.gov.cn.
  6. 140,000 illegal tablets seized through postal system around globe including NI. By Grainne Connolly. Published: March 19, 2020. Goqradio.com.
  7. RECLAIM Your Seized Meds. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Prescriptionjustice.org.
  8. JFK is America’s largest mail room. Here’s how customs searches 1 million mail packages a day for drugs and counterfeit goods. By Abby Narishkin and Steve Cameron. Published: September 23, 2019. Businessinsider.com.
  9. Controlled Substances Act. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Wikipedia.org.
  10. Modafinil | Legal status. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Wikipedia.org.
  11. Misuse of Drugs Act 1971. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Wikipedia.org.
  12. Modafinil: restricted use recommended. From: Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency. Published: December 11, 2014. Article date: August 2010. Gov.uk.
  13. Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Wikipedia.org.
  14. Regulations Amending the Food and Drug Regulations (1184 — Modafinil). Published: March 26, 2005. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Web.archive.org.
  15. Regulations for bringing personal medications into Singapore. Last updated: January 13, 2020. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Hsa.gov.sg.
  16. HSA Alert: Woman Hospitalised for Serious Skin Reactions After Taking Modafinil to Improve Alertness. Published: February 6, 2018. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Hsa.gov.sg.
  17. Modafinil | Brand Names. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Drugs.com.
  18. Danish Pharmacovigilance Update. Published: December 16, 2010. Laegemiddelstyrelsen.dk.
  19. The use of medication against attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in Denmark: A drug use study from a national perspective. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Researchgate.net.
  20. International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) | Documentation required (pdf). Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Incb.org.
  21. The European regulatory system for medicines | A consistent approach to medicines regulation across the European Union (pdf). Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Ema.europa.eu.
  22. Safety Update (pdf). Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Drugoffice.gov.hk.
  23. Medicines Amendment Regulations 2018. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Legislation.govt.nz.
  24. Compliance | Personal Importation of Medicines. Revised: October 8, 2018. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Medsafe.govt.nz.
  25. Attorney Naoki Tani / Blog of a law firm dealing only with medical cases. Retrieved: December 21, 2020. Web.archive.org.

Modafinil.org is an informational resource about modafinil and other nootropics.