Legal Information: Maine

State Gun Laws

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November 10, 2017

If the abuser has been convicted of a crime, can s/he keep or buy a gun?

Under Maine state law, a person cannot get a legally get a firearm permit --to have or buy a firearm-- if any of the following apply:

  1. as an adult, s/he was convicted of (or found "not criminally responsible by reason of insanity" of) any of the following crimes:
  2. as a juvenile, s/he was found to have engaged in conduct that would have been considered any of the above-mentioned crimes if s/he committed the act as an adult. If it was the type of crime listed above in paragraph 1, sub-paragraph g, the prohibition only applies if, while committing the act, s/he caused bodily injury to another person or bodily injury was threatened;2
  3. s/he was found to be "not criminally responsible by reason of insanity" for any crime;
  4. s/he was found to be "not competent to stand trial" for any crime; or
  5. s/he is a fugitive from justice.3

Note: If the inability to get a firearm permit is due to committing one of the crimes listed in paragraph 1, the restriction on getting a permit only lasts for a certain period of time. For the crimes listed in paragraph 1, once five years has passed after the adult or juvenile completes the sentence imposed as a result of the conviction, s/he can apply for a firearm permit. However, if the conviction was for one of the domestic violence crimes listed in paragraph 1, sub-paragraphs a through f, there is the additional requirement that the person must not have been convicted of any crimes during the five-year period. If the person is convicted of a new crime during the five-year period, s/he has to wait an additional five years after the sentence for that new crime is completed before applying for the firearm permit.4

The length of the prohibition is even shorter if the crime was nonviolent and was committed by a juvenile. If the juvenile did not cause or threaten bodily injury while committing any of the acts described in paragraph 1, s/he can get a firearm permit when s/he turns 18 or three years after completing of the sentence, whichever is later.5

Also, federal laws, which apply to all states, may restrict an abuser's right to have a gun. Go to Federal Gun Laws to get more information.

1 ME ST T. 15 § 393(1)(A-1), (1-B)
2 ME ST T. 15 § 393(1)(C), (1-B)(B)
3 ME ST T. 15 § 393(1)(E)(2)-(3), (1)(F)
4 ME ST T. 15 § 393(2), (1-B)(B)
5 ME ST T. 15 § 393(1-A)