Vermont Gov. Scott signs compromise gun bill after veto

March 25, 2022 GMT

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — Vermont’s Republican Gov. Phil Scott signed into law Friday a bill that extends the maximum waiting time for a background check to buy a gun from three to seven days and bans firearms from hospitals.

Last month, Scott vetoed legislation that would have extended to 30 days the maximum background check waiting period to purchase firearms. Under the existing law if a background check isn’t completed within three days, the purchase is allowed to proceed creating what is known as the Charleston Loophole.

The compromise bill that Scott signed extended that waiting period to seven days, which Scott said he found acceptable.

The new law, which takes effect July 1, would also help keep firearms out of hospitals and it clarifies when a judge can order a defendant to relinquish firearms while an emergency relief-from-abuse order is in effect.


The Charleston Loophole is a provision in federal law that gives a gun seller discretion on whether to proceed with a sale if the FBI fails to determine within three business days whether a buyer is eligible to purchase a gun. It was used by the shooter in a 2015 massacre at a historically Black church in Charleston, South Carolina, to buy a gun.