Federal law prohibits certain persons from purchasing or possessing firearms, such as felons, certain domestic abusers, and certain people with a history of mental illness.
Missouri law prohibits the knowing possession of a firearm by:
- Any person convicted of a felony under Missouri law or a crime under any other state’s laws or federal law which, if committed in Missouri, would be classified as a felony;
- A fugitive from justice;
- A person habitually in an intoxicated or drugged condition; or
- A person currently adjudged mentally incompetent.1
Missouri law generally allows a person who is intoxicated to possess a firearm as long as he or she does not handle or use it in a negligent or unlawful manner or discharge the weapon (except when acting in self-defense). Intoxicated persons may also possess a firearm that is: 1) not readily accessible; 2) transported in a nonfunctioning state; or 3) unloaded when ammunition is not readily accessible.2
However, Missouri law prohibits a federal firearms dealer who engages in the sale of firearms from failing or refusing to complete the sale of a firearm to a customer when the sale is authorized by federal law.3 This provision does not apply to any individual federal firearms license holder or his or her agents or employees to the extent they chose in their individual judgment to not complete the sale or transfer of a firearm for articulable reasons specific to that transaction, so long as those reasons are not based on the race, gender, religion, or creed of the buyer.4
See our Prohibited Purchasers policy summary for a comprehensive discussion of this issue.