International Cannabis: Guidance for Companies Entering the U.S. Market, Part 2 – Taxation

In prior blog posts (see here and here), I described how we have been fielding regular inquiries regarding international cannabis, both from companies inside the U.S. looking internationally and from international companies looking to the U.S. market. This post deals with taxation issues for international companies seeking to enter the U.S. market.

Tax Treaties. The first level of taxation inquiry when looking to do business in the U.S. is to determine whether your home country is one of the 68 that has a bilateral tax treaty in place with the U.S. (see here for the IRS’ definitive list). The “tax” purpose of these tax treaties is to ensure taxable income is accounted for so that it can be taxed. The “treaty” part of the tax treaties refers to the agreement between the countries that their respective taxing authorities will apply certain reduced tax rates or entirely do away with other tax rates so as to avoid double taxation, fostering a more favorable business environment between the two countries.

IRC Section 280E. In the U.S. where cannabis as marijuana (> 0.3% THC content) continues to be illegal at the federal level, the IRS (Internal Revenue Service) keeps an eye on

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