Article 1, Section 16 of the State Constitutional Provision of Maine that serves as basis for Maine Gun Laws says, “Every citizen has a right to keep and bear arms and this right shall never be questioned.”
In general, the state does not require permit to purchase, registration of firearms and licensing of gun owners. But similar to most states in the US, it requires a permit to carry for the possession of handguns in public places.
Validity of Permits Issues Under Maine Gun Laws in Other States
There are only 23 states that honor permits issued under Maine Gun Laws, these are:
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- South Dakota
On the other hand, Maine Gun Laws only recognize permits issued from these states:
- North Dakota
- South Dakota
Rules and Regulations Provided by Maine Gun Laws
Here is a quick run on the standards and prohibitions enumerated in the Maine Gun Laws:
1. Despite the purchase of a rifle, shotgun or handgun not needing a permit to acquire, dealers are mandated by the law to keep track of all their transactions involving guns. The record should contain the manufacturer, caliber and serial number of the gun. The name and address of the buyer or recipient should also appear in the record.
2. A safety brochure must be given by the seller to a firearm buyer.
3. The possession or transfer of a gun to a person below 18 years old is illegal. Likewise, a juvenile convicted of selected non-violent offenses are barred from owning a firearm for three years.
4. A child under 16 is not permitted to buy an air rifle, gunpowder and ammunition except with the approval of his legal guardian or parent. Then, the use of the gun should be under the supervision of any of the persons mentioned.
5. Any commercial establishment that engages in the sale of fireams must post a warning in any conspicuous place of the store that which reads, “ENDANGERING THE WELFARE OF A CHILD IS A CRIME. IF YOU LEAVE A FIREARM AND AMMUNITION WITHIN EASY ACCESS OF A CHILD, YOU MAY BE SUBJECT TO FINE, IMPRISONMENT OR BOTH. KEEP FIREARMS AND AMMUNITION SEPARATE. KEEP FIREARMS AND AMMUNITION LOCKED UP. USE TRIGGER LOCKS.” The warning should appear in the entrances of gun shows too.
6. A concealed carry permit is required even for a person keeping a firearm inside a vehicle. In addition to this, the owner of the firearm must be diligent enough to keep the firearm unloaded, out of sight and store it in a safe or secure container like the glove compartment. Only law enforcement officials or persons expressly authorized by the law are exempted from this rule.
7. Even with a permit to carry, a person is not allowed to possess a firearm in schools, discharge a gun accross a public road, carry a firearm while intoxicated or in places that sell intoxicating substances. Again, exempted from this rule are law enforcement officials and individuals who are expressly authorized by the law.
8. A machine gun not legally registered or possessed in compliance to federal laws is prohibited.
9. Hunting with an automatic firearm is not allowed.
Permit to Carry Requirements
Applicants who wish to apply for a permit to carry should have the following requirements:
1. Must be above 18 years old.
2. Should not be prohibited to own a firearm by the court or Maine Gun Laws and with a good moral character for the past five years.
It should be noted that for a person to be considered to be of “good moral character”, he should not be a perpetrator of violent acts, free from conviction of serious crimes that is punishable by one year imprisonment, not convicted of three counts of crimes punishable with less than a year of imprisonment, not a controlled substance abuser, not a drug addict, and not involved in juvenile offenses punishable by less than one year of imprisonment.
3. Must be able to supply all the information needed in the forms and questionnaires. He should also furnish all the documentary requirements like mental health records and he must pay the fees associated with his application.
Maine Gun Laws expressly mention that “The State intends to occupy and preempt the entire field of legislation concerning the regulation of firearms, components, ammunition and supplies.”