While Americans can write off many of their medical expenses, it seems reasonable to question whether or not one can write off medical marijuana, especially when a doctor’s or medical professional’s prescription is required to obtain it in states that have made it legal. However, marijuana is federally illegal in the United States. Therefore, you cannot deduct it as a medical expenses on your federal income tax return, nor can you use the expenses to reduce your adjusted gross or taxable income.

Medical MarijuanaWhat if Medical Marijuana is Legal in My State?

According to the IRS, marijuana is still considered a Schedule I drug (not legal under federal law) and you cannot deduct it from your taxes. In some states, however, you may be able to take a medical marijuana deduction on your state return, but it is risky and we advise against it. If your deduction is ever challenged through an audit, and you lose, you could face having to pay a penalty for inaccurately filing your taxes.

Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Connecticut all conform to the IRS and 26 U.S. Code Section 280E, which is the federal statute that disallows tax deduction or tax credits on those engaging in the trafficking of a Schedule I or II controlled substance (cannabis).

For more information about what medical and dental expenses are deductible, view IRS Publication 502, or contact us at 401-831-0200.