Posted on January 2, 2012
Last updated February 17, 2012
In our publication Gun Laws Matter 2012: Understanding the Link Between Weak Laws and Gun Violence, the Law Center ranked each state based on a review of state laws in 29 different firearms-related policy areas. Maine ranked 32nd out of 50 – having enacted few gun violence prevention laws. Among other things, Maine does not:
- Require a background check prior to the transfer of a firearm between private, unlicensed parties;
- Require firearms dealers or purchasers to obtain a state license;
- Prohibit the transfer or possession of assault weapons, 50 caliber rifles, or large capacity ammunition magazines;
- Require firearm owners to register their firearms;
- Limit the number of firearms that may be purchased at one time;
- Impose a waiting period on firearm purchases;
- Regulate unsafe handguns (“junk guns” or “Saturday night specials”);
- Significantly regulate ammunition sales; or
- Provide local governments with authority to regulate firearms.
Local law enforcement does, however, have limited discretion to deny a permit to carry a concealed handgun.
In 2009, Maine had the 15th lowest number of gun deaths per capita among the states. However, based on data published by Mayors Against Illegal Guns (“MAIG”), Maine was the source state for guns recovered in crimes in other states at four times the rate at which guns from other states were recovered after being used in crimes in Maine. In fact, in that year, Maine had the third highest ratio of crime gun exports to imports among the states.
Maine Firearms Laws
For details about specific firearms laws in Maine, choose a topic below, or see all of the firearms laws in this state.