Virginia issues gun permits for the possession of firearms in the state.

To apply, you must meet all requirements mandated by the state gun laws.

Virginia Gun Permit Summary

Virginia is a shall-issue state for the application of gun permits.

The sheriff’s office in a local county is in charge of processing residents permits, while the state police department is in charge of non-residents permits.

Virginia does not issue a permit to purchase firearms in the state.

How To Get A Gun Permit In Virginia?

To get a gun permit in Virginia, you must not have a prohibition against the possession of firearms in the state, and you must be at least twenty-one years old.

However, pistol permits in Virginia are only valid for concealed carry.

Virginia Gun Permit Laws

You can openly carry firearms in Virginia if you are at least eighteen years old, and you have legal rights to possess firearms. Virginia does not require a pistol permit for open carry of firearms.

However, local areas like Alexandria and Newport completely prohibit the open carry of firearms, especially in parks, events, and buildings accessible to the public.

The magazine limit for handguns in Virginia is twenty round ammunition, and any firearm that exceeds this is an assault weapon.

For the possession of machine guns and automatic firearms, Virginia gun laws require you to register these firearms at least twenty-four hours after acquisition.

Virginia state police will be in charge of this registration process.

In Virginia, there are no restrictions or prohibitions for types of ammunition.

Virginia Pistol Permit Requirements

Virginia pistol permit law requirements for the application of gun license in the state include the following:

  • You must meet the minimum age requirement of twenty-one.
  • You must be a resident of the county you are making the application.
  • You must undergo an approved Virginia firearm training to demonstrate your competency in firearms.
  • You must not be a convict for multiple charges of misdemeanor five years before Virginia permit application.
  • You must not be a drug addict, or an illegal user of marijuana, narcotics, and substance controlled by the Drug Enforcement Agency.
  • You must not be a convict for any drunkenness crime for three years before the application.
  • You must not be someone a law court believes is likely to possess a firearm illegally or is a threat to lives.
  • You must not be a convict of any violent crime, sexual assault, or brandishing of a firearm for three years before the pistol permit application.
  • You must not be a convict or under any indictment for stalking.
  • You must not be under any restriction or protective order from the court, to protect a person or a family member.
  • You must not have been involved in a juvenile delinquent act, which if committed by an adult, would be a felon.
  • You must not be acquitted from crime due to insanity reasons or being mentally impaired for at least five years before the application.
  • You must not be a legally incompetent person unless you ave your rights restored at least five years before your application for Virginia concealed carry permit application.
  • You must not be voluntarily or involuntarily admitted to a mental hospital. In the case of involuntary admission, you must have been discharged for more than five years before application.
  • You must not be a felon or have any involvement in an ongoing felony case.
  • You must not be a fugitive, or have an arrest warrant in your name.
  • You must not be a dishonorably discharged member of the United States Armed Forces.
  • You must not be a mentally impaired person, or under rehabilitation for the use of drugs within five years before CCW application in Virginia.
  • You must meet all federal law requirements for permit application in the country.

Different Types Of Gun Permits In Virginia

A summary of firearms permits issued in Virginia includes the following:

  • State permit to purchase long guns: Virginia does not issue a state permit to purchase long guns.
  • State permits to purchase handguns: Virginia does not issue a state permit to purchase handguns.
  • State permit to open carry: Virginia is a permissive state, so no permit is required to open carry.
  • State permits to conceal carry long guns: Virginia does not issue a state permit to conceal handguns.
  • State permits to conceal carry handguns: Virginia issues a pistol permit to conceal carry handguns in the state.

How Much Does It Cost To Get A Gun License In Virginia?

The cost for initial and renewal permit applications for residents of Virginia is fifty dollars. The only exception to this is King William County that charges residents fifteen dollars for initial and renewal permits.

Non-residents applying for Virginia gun licenses will pay a hundred dollars for initial permit applications.

Note that retired law enforcement officers who spend at least fifteen years in Virginia’s service will apply for a gun license at zero cost.

Gun Permits Application And Renewal Law In Virginia

The processes to apply for gun licenses in Virginia includes the following:

Complete A Firearm Training Application

First, enroll for a Virginia concealed carry permit class. There are many state-approved courses you can apply for.

Obtain The Application Form

You can either do this by downloading online or visiting the sheriff’s office or a local county to pick it up.

Submit The Application

Do this by applying along with the necessary documents like your training certificate.

Mail it to the clerk of a local court or the sheriff’s office in your county of residence.

Receive Notification Mail

After the processing period, you will receive an approval or denial mail.

However, as long as you meet all the requirements, your permit application should be approved.

For the renewal permit process, you will receive a reminder mail notifying you about the application at least ninety days before your current permit expires.

Also, you have a grace of one hundred and eighty days after the expiry date to apply.

If this period elapses, you can no longer renew your permit, and you may have to apply for a new one.

After forty-five days, you will receive a mail notifying you of your renewal status.

Gun Permit Reciprocity With Virginia

Virginia will acknowledge permits from every jurisdiction of the United States Of America.

Other details of its reciprocity include the following:

States That Will Recognize Virginia Pistol Permit

In these states, you can possess firearms with a pistol permit issued by Virginia. The states are:

  • Alabama
  • Georgia
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Louisiana
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New Mexico
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Wyoming
  • Puerto Rico

States That Have Restricted Reciprocity with Virginia

These states will allow you to possess firearms with A Virginia gun license, but you must meet other individual requirements before you do so. They include the following:

  • Colorado
  • Florida
  • Michigan
  • South Carolina
  • Wisconsin

States That Have Permitless Carry Policy

You can open or conceal carry in these states without a gun permit. They are constitutional carry states and do not require licenses for the possession of firearms in their territory as long as you meet other firearm requirements.

  • Arizona
  • Alaska
  • Arkansas
  • Idaho
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Maine
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • New Hampshire
  • Oklahoma
  • South Dakota
  • Vermont
  • West Virginia

FAQs About Gun Permits In Virginia

Virginia gun laws relating to the pistol permits in the state and the possession of firearms include the following:

Do I Need A Permit To Conceal Carry Firearms In Virginia?

Yes, to conceal carry in Virginia, you must apply for a pistol license.

For How Long Is Virginia Gun Permit Valid?

Virginia gun license is valid for five years, after which you have to apply for a renewal.

Can Non-Residents Apply For Virginia Gun Permits?

Yes, non-residents can apply for the gun permit via mail. To do this, send mail to the Virginia police department.

You will receive an application package that will contain all necessary information you need, the state police fingerprint card, an envelope for submitting your application, and a checklist to make sure that you complete the needed information.

For more information, visit the state police website.

Virginia will process non-residents permits between three to six months.

How Can I Change The Name And Address On My Virginia Gun License?

To change your name or address on Virginia pistol license, submit a notice in the form provided by the state police. The cost for this is ten dollars.

What Can I Do If I Lost My Virginia Gun Permit Or It Gets Stolen?

For destroyed, missing, or stolen Virginia gun licenses, contact your county’s local sheriff office for a replacement permit. This would cost ten dollars.

Some counties have an online option replacement application.

How Soon Can I Apply For Virginia Pistol Permit After Moving To The State?

You can apply for a gun permit in Virginia as long as you have a pistol license from a state you are moving from if such a state has a reciprocity deal with Virginia.

However, make sure that you apply for a change of residency prior.

Can I Make Use Of Virginia Gun Permit After Moving To Another State In The Country?

As long as you apply for a change of residency before moving out of Virginia, your gun license will be valid until it eventually expires.

Do I Need A Virginia Permit To Open Carry In The State?

No, Virginia is a permissive open carry state, and as long as you are eighteen years old or more, with legal rights to possess firearms, you can open carry in Virginia.

What Is The Minimum Age Requirement To Apply For A Virginia Gun Permit?

You must be at least twenty-one years old to apply for a pistol permit in Virginia.

Do I need A Permit To Purchase Firearms In Virginia?

No, Virginia does not require a pistol permit to purchase firearms in the state.

Does My Firearm Permit Exempt Me From Completing A Criminal Record Background Check Before Buying Firearms In Virginia?

No, regardless of if you are a licensee or not, you must complete a criminal record check before you can buy firearms in Virginia.

Do I Need A Virginia Gun Permit To Possess Firearms In My Private Property?

No, you can possess firearms in your private property with or without a gun license.

Do I Need To Complete A Firearm Training Before Applying For Virginia Gun Permit?

Yes, you just complete one of the state-approved firearm training before applying for a gun license in Virginia.

Is Virginia A Preemption Gun Law State?

Virginia has partial preemption gun laws with local municipalities having the authority to regulate the discharge of firearms within their boundaries.

What Is The Age Requirement For The Purchase Of Firearms In Virginia?

You must be at least eighteen years old to possess firearms in Virginia.

Relevant Gun Laws Permits And Legislature In Virginia

Some of Virginia pistol permit laws that concern the possession of firearms in the state include the following:

Possession Of Firearms In Private Vehicles

According to the statute, [Va. Code Ann. § 18.2-308], you can possess firearms in your private vehicle in Virginia with or without a pistol permit.

However, if you do not have a permit, you must lock the firearm in a compartment, the trunk of the vehicle, or anywhere that can close.

Possession Of Firearms In Roadside Areas

You can conceal carry firearms in roadside areas of Virginia. However, make sure you are familiar with county laws before doing so.

Possession Of Firearms In State, Parks, Forests, And Wildlife Management Areas

If you have a Virginia pistol license or anyone from a state that it recognizes, you can possess firearms forests, parks and wildlife management areas. But first, visit the park website for more information on firearms regulations.


Possession Of Firearms In Restaurant And Park Areas Of The State

According to the statute, [Va. Code Ann. § 18.2-308.012], If you are a gun permit holder, you can possess firearms in restaurants and bar ventures, except there is a post prohibiting such or you are under the influence.

Possession Of Firearms In Hotels

Being a Virginia permit holder does not guarantee that you have the right to possess firearms in Hotels or similar establishments in the state.

Virginia laws, [Va. Code Ann. § 18.2-308.01(c)], allows private properties and business owners to be able to regulate the use of firearms within their premises. Hence, hotels can develop their firearm policies.

For more information, you can check the website of the hotel you plan to visit.

Possession Of Firearms In Employee Parking Lots

No local municipality or employer can prohibit someone who is a legal firearm owner from storing his or her gun or ammunition in a locked private vehicle parked in an area designated for it.

The only exceptions to this law are local or regional jails, detention homes, government buildings, and law enforcement agencies.

[Va. Code Ann. § 15.2-915]

Additional Resources

Virginia Gun Laws
Virginia Concealed Carry Laws
Virginia Open Carry Laws

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