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Federal law prohibits possession of a firearm or ammunition by any person who has been “adjudicated as a mental defective” or involuntarily “committed to any mental institution.”1 No federal law, however, requires states to report the identities of these individuals to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (“NICS”) database, which the FBI uses to perform background checks prior to firearm transfers.

In Michigan, upon entry of a court order directing that an individual be involuntarily hospitalized or involuntarily undergo a program of alternative treatment or a program of combined hospitalization and alternative treatment, the court must immediately order the Michigan Department of State Police (DSP) to enter the court order into the Law Enforcement Information Network (LEIN).2 Findings of legal incapacity or not guilty by reason of insanity are treated in the same manner.3

For general information on the background check process and categories of prohibited purchasers or possessors, see the Michigan Background Checks and Michigan Prohibited Purchasers Generally sections.

 See our Mental Health Reporting policy summary for a comprehensive discussion of this issue. 

  1. 18 U.S.C. § 922(d)(4).[]
  2. Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. § 330.1464a(1). DSP is required to remove the court order from the law enforcement information network only upon receipt of a subsequent court order for that removal.  Id. Moreover, DSP must immediately enter an order into LEIN or remove an order from LEIN as ordered by the court. Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. § 330.1464a(2).[]
  3. Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. §§ 700.5107(1), 769.16b(1). DSP must immediately enter an order or disposition into LEIN, or remove an order of legal incapacity from LEIN, as ordered by the court. Mich. Comp. Laws Serv. §§ 700.5107(3), 769.16b(2).[]