Everything You Need to Know About CCW Permits in California
A California Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) license is the only legal gun license a person can receive in the state. Here’s everything you need to know about deciding whether to apply for a CCW permit in California.
A person must be 18 years of age or older to apply for a CCW, and the license itself may include any restrictions or conditions that the issuing authority deems appropriate. Such restrictions may pertain to the time, place, manner, and circumstances by which the individual can carry a firearm.
What is a CCW?
Concealed carry is the practice of carrying a concealed weapon on one’s person in public places. A CCW, which stands for “Concealed Carry Weapon,” authorizes the individual to carry a concealed weapon and is issued by the state. A concealed firearm can be carried on one’s body, off their body in a purse, in a backpack, or another kind of specialized concealment accessory. Regardless of which accessory is used, it is critical that there is a trigger guard on the weapon to prevent it from being fired.
Who is eligible?
The state of California regulates who can carry a concealed, loaded firearm in public by issuing CCW licenses to certain approved residents of the state. A CCW can be issued by a local police department or county sheriff. A CCW typically expires after 2 years and is valid throughout California. Some of the reasons a person can apply for a CCW is if they believe they are in grave danger due to the circumstances of a current court-issued restraining order, if the defendant is found to pose a threat to the safety of the gun owner, or if the person spends “a substantial period of time” at their place of work.
A CCW can include written restrictions or conditions on where the gun can be used, yet no liability insurance is needed to apply for the license. Additionally, the license must explicitly state the kind of firearm the person is authorized to carry, the name of the gun manufacturer, the serial number, caliber, as well as some of the licensee’s personal information: name, employment status, residence, business address, height, weight, eye and hair color, age, and their intent for carrying the weapon.
An applicant is eligible to obtain a CCW license if they:
- Are at least 18 years of age,
- Are deemed to have good moral character,
- Have completed the firearm safety training course,
- Have met all relevant residency requirements,
- After a background check, they are not prohibited by the state to own, receive, or purchase a firearm, and
- There is a good cause illustrated for issuing the CCW license.
Stipulations for Receiving a CCW
Off-limits areas where an individual cannot hold a firearm are schools, courthouses, and businesses that buy or sell liquor and spirits. As of January 1, 2019, individuals in California have to undergo an 8-hour firearm training course on firearm use and gun safety. In this training, individuals will fire a gun in a “live-fire” exercise in a shooting range. The State of California will issue CCWs to residents, members of the military stationed in the state, and those who work for the state. California does not honor any CCW’s issued by another US state.
It is important to note that a US citizen may carry a handgun within their home, place of business, or other means of private property that they own without a CCW.
Reasons to Get A CCW Permit in California
Having a CCW permit eliminates any concern that the person holding the gun is a rightful gun owner. This license communicates to law enforcement and other citizens that this person has passed their background check, among other criteria, in order to be legally authorized to carry a gun. While one should not obtain a CCW solely for the purpose to prove to others that they can, there is a sense of pride associated with abiding by this law and proving to others that the individual has been legally authorized to purchase and carry a firearm within the state of California. It also translates to the greater public that this individual has gone above and beyond to take the time and expense to live by the law.
If you have any more questions about getting a CCW permit in California, contact us. We can help you obtain your CCW permit, from start to finish. Get your free consultation with the most qualified attorney for your unique legal situation!