Arizona is well-known for its gun-friendly laws and strong support for the Second Amendment. As a “constitutional carry” state, Arizona allows law-abiding citizens to carry a concealed firearm without a permit. However, obtaining a Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) permit in Arizona can still provide a variety of benefits, such as reciprocity with other states, faster firearm purchases, and the ability to carry in certain restricted areas. In this comprehensive guide, we will discuss the steps and requirements to obtain an Arizona CCW permit, including eligibility, application process, fees, and training requirements.
Benefits of Obtaining an Arizona CCW Permit
Even though Arizona is a constitutional carry state, there are several advantages to having a CCW permit, including:
- Reciprocity with other states: An Arizona CCW permit is recognized in 37 states, allowing you to carry a concealed weapon while traveling outside of Arizona.
- Faster firearm purchases: With a CCW permit, background checks are expedited, and you can avoid the waiting period when purchasing a firearm.
- Carrying in certain restricted areas: A CCW permit allows you to carry in certain areas that are off-limits to those without a permit, such as establishments that serve alcohol for consumption on the premises.
Eligibility Requirements for an Arizona CCW Permit
Before applying for a CCW permit in Arizona, you must meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Be a resident of Arizona or a U.S. citizen.
- Be 21 years of age or older, or 19 years of age if a member or veteran of the United States Armed Forces.
- Not be under indictment for, or convicted of, a felony offense.
- Not suffer from mental illness and have not been adjudicated mentally incompetent or committed to a mental institution.
- Not be an unlawful user of, or addicted to, any controlled substance.
- Complete a firearms safety training program approved by the Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS).
For a complete list of eligibility requirements, visit the Arizona DPS website.
Steps to Obtain an Arizona CCW Permit
Step 1: Complete a Firearms Safety Training Course
Before submitting your application, you must complete a firearms safety training course approved by the Arizona DPS. Caswells Shooting Range offers approved courses at a variety of times to fit your schedule.
To view and register for our CCW courses, visit the Caswells Shooting Range course calendar. Our courses are designed to provide you with the knowledge and skills required to safely and responsibly carry a concealed weapon in Arizona.
Step 2: Prepare Your Application Packet
After completing an approved firearms safety training course, prepare your application packet, which should include the following documents:
- Completed Arizona CCW Permit Application
- Two sets of fingerprints on standard FBI fingerprint cards (FD-258). These can be obtained through local law enforcement agencies or private fingerprinting services.
- A photocopy of your firearms safety training course certificate or documentation proving completion of an approved course.
- A photocopy of a valid government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license or passport.
- A check or money order for the application fee, made payable to the “Arizona Department of Public Safety.”
Step 3: Submit Your Application Packet
Mail your completed application packet to the following address:
Arizona Department of Public Safety Attn: Concealed Weapons Permit Unit P.O. Box 6488 Phoenix, AZ 85005-6488
Do not send your application via certified mail, as the Arizona DPS will not accept applications sent this way. Instead, use standard first-class mail or another non-certified method.
Application Fees and Processing Time
The application fee for an Arizona CCW permit is $60 for new applicants and $43 for renewals. The Arizona DPS accepts checks or money orders only – do not send cash.
Once your application is submitted, the Arizona DPS has 60 days to process it. During this time, they will conduct a background check to ensure you meet all eligibility requirements. If your application is approved, you will receive your CCW permit in the mail. If your application is denied, you will receive a letter explaining the reason for the denial.
Renewing Your Arizona CCW Permit
Arizona CCW permits are valid for five years. To renew your permit, you must submit a renewal application before the expiration date. The renewal process is similar to the initial application process, but you do not need to complete a firearms safety training course again.
For more information on renewing your Arizona CCW permit, visit the Arizona DPS website.
Reciprocity and Traveling with Firearms
An Arizona CCW permit is recognized in 37 states, but it is essential to understand the laws of each state you plan to visit, as they may have different requirements and restrictions. The U.S. Concealed Carry Association’s (USCCA) reciprocity map is an excellent resource for checking which states honor an Arizona CCW permit.
When traveling with firearms, ensure they are unloaded and stored in a locked container, separate from any ammunition. Additionally, familiarize yourself with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) guidelines if you plan to fly with firearms.
Obtaining a CCW permit in Arizona may not be required for carrying a concealed firearm, but it offers several benefits, such as reciprocity with other states, faster firearm purchases, and the ability to carry in certain restricted areas. To apply, ensure you meet the eligibility requirements, complete an approved firearms safety training course, and submityour application packet to the Arizona Department of Public Safety. Keep in mind the application fees and processing time, and stay informed about renewal procedures to maintain your permit’s validity.
Remember, carrying a concealed weapon is a significant responsibility that comes with a duty to understand and follow applicable laws and safety practices. Always stay updated on local, state, and federal regulations, and continue to improve your firearms handling and safety skills to be a responsible CCW permit holder.
We hope this comprehensive guide has provided you with all the information you need to obtain your Arizona CCW permit. Safe and responsible carrying!