Washington issues gun permits for open and concealed carry of firearms.

The state requires that applicants meet all requirements of its gun law before applying.

Washington Gun Permit Summary

Washington has a shall-issue policy for gun licenses. The local sheriff county or police department is in charge of processing the permit.

Washington does not issue purchase permits to buy firearms. But a buyer must complete a criminal record check while purchasing firearms.

The state issues pistol permits to both residents and non-residents.

How To Get A Gun Permit In Washington?

Washington issues gun permits to those that are twenty-one years old and do not have federal or state prohibition against the possession of firearms.

Washington Gun Permit Laws

You can open carry in Washington without a gun license as long as you are twenty-one years old or more, and you have legal rights to possess firearms. However, to openly carry loaded firearms, you must have a Washington pistol permit.

However, Washington still has location restrictions for the possession of firearms. Examples of these places are schools, courthouses, etc.

Washington prohibits the manufacturing, assembling, possession, and transfer of machine guns in the state.

Those exempted from this are law enforcement officers, military members, peace officers, and federally licensed individuals.

There are no prohibitions for the types of ammunition used in the state.

Washington Pistol Permit Requirements

The requirements you must meet for the possession of a firearm in Washington include the following:

  • You must be at least twenty-one years old.
  • You must not be a convict or have any pending indictment.
  • You must not be a fugitive or have an arrest warrant in your name.
  • You must not be a felon or have any felony conviction.
  • You must not have any court protection order that has to do with the handling or possession of firearms.
  • You must not be awaiting trial or in a sentencing process for a felony crime.
  • You must not be a drug abuser or deal with substances under control by the Drug Law Enforcement Agency.
  • You must not have any firearm restrictions in the past year.
  • You must not have a previously revoked Washington concealed pistol license.
  • You must not be a mentally impaired person or have any reoccurring mental illness.
  • You must meet all federal law requirements for the pistol permit.

Different Types Of Gun Permits In Washington

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

  • State permit to purchase long guns: Washington does not issue a state permit to buy long guns.
  • State permits to purchase handguns: Washington does not issue a state permit to purchase guns.
  • State permit to open carry: Washington is a license open carry state.
  • State permits to conceal carry long guns: Washington does not issue a state permit to conceal long guns.
  • State permits to conceal carry handguns: Washington issues a pistol permit to conceal carry handguns in the state.

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

Initial permit applications in Washington cost thirty-six dollars, but this includes a fee for fingerprints.

Renewal applications cost thirty-two dollars.

Gun Permits Application And Renewal Law In Washington

The processes to apply for gun permits in Washington includes the following:

Complete Your Application

You can visit your local county sheriff’s office to pick up the application or download it from the web portal.

Submit The Necessary Documents

Submit at a local law enforcement agency. Other documents you will provide includes:

  • Proof that you are a resident of the state. You must stay in Washington for at least ninety days before application.
  • Means of identification, either a state-issued ID card or your driver’s license.
  • Submit a permanent resident card if you are a resident alien.
  • Your fingerprint.

Receive Mail Notification

You will receive a mail to notify you of an approved or a denied CCW application.

For the renewal permit process, you can begin the application ninety days before its expiry date, and you have until ninety days after the permit expires to complete the application.

However, any application after the expiry date will attract a late renewal fee.

If you do not renew your Washington pistol license ninety days after the expiry date, your permit becomes invalid, and you have to apply for a new one.

Gun Permit Reciprocity With Washington

For gun permit reciprocity with other states, Washington requires specific requirements. It will only accept licenses from states that meet the requirements.

The requirements include the following:

  • The states must, in return, honor a Washington gun license.
  • The states must not issue pistol licenses to anyone that does not meet the age requirement of twenty-one.
  • The state must require a health and mental history and request an applicant fingerprint to complete a criminal record check.

Other aspects of its reciprocity include the following:

States That Washington Accept Their Gun Licenses

These states meet Washington gun license requirements, and their residents can possess firearms in Washington with the pistol permits. They are:

  • Idaho
  • Kansas
  • Louisiana
  • Michigan
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • South Dakota
  • Utah

State That Recognizes Washington Pistol Permit

These states will allow you to possess firearms in their territory if you have a Washington gun license. The states are:

  • Alabama
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Louisiana
  • Montana
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Virginia
  • Wisconsin
  • Puerto Rico

States That Have Restricted Reciprocity With Washington

In Michigan, you need a Washington gun license to possess a firearm, and at the same time, you must meet some individual requirements too.

States That Do Not Require A Gun Permit For The Possession Of Firearms

These are permitless carry states that do not require a gun license for either open or concealed carry in their territory. They include the following:

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

FAQs About Gun Permits In Washington

Some of the most frequently asked questions about Washington gun licenses, its renewal, application, and other important information includes the following:

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

Yes, you must obtain a Washington gun license before you conceal carry firearms in the state.

For How Long Is Washington Gun Permit Valid?

Washington pistol license is valid for five years.

Can Non-Residents Apply For Washington Gun Permits?

Yes, non-residents can apply for gun licenses in Washington. However, the process cannot be completed via mail. The applicant has to appear physically at any law enforcement agency in Washington.

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

You can change the details of your gun license by notifying the sheriff’s local county office and applying for the replacement permit. The cost for this is ten dollars.

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

For stolen, missing, or damaged permits, visit your county’s sheriff office and pay a fee of ten dollars to apply for the replacement permit.

How Soon Can I Apply For Washington Gun Permit After Moving To The State?

As soon as you establish residency in Washington, you can apply for the gun license at the office of the county closest to your resident.

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

Yes, you can make use of your Washington gun license after moving to another state as long as you complete the change of residency application. The permit will be valid until its expiry date.

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

Yes, you need a Washington gun license to open carry loaded firearms. However, you can open carry unloaded firearms if you are at least twenty one years old, and you do not have a restriction for the possession of weapons in the state.

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

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

Do I need A Permit To Purchase Firearms In Washington?

No, you do not need a purchase permit to buy firearms in Washington.

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

No, you must complete a criminal record check before buying firearms from a licensed dealer in Washington, regardless of whether you are a pistol permit holder.

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

No, you do not need to be a pistol permit holder to possess firearms in your private properties, dwelling place, personal workplace, or anywhere you occupy by renting or leasing.

Do I Need To Complete A Firearm Training Before Applying For Washington Pistol Permit?

No, there are no requirements to complete firearm training for the application of gun licenses in Washington.

What Is The Processing Period For Firearm Permits In Washington?

The processing period for a pistol permit application in Washington is thirty days with a driver’s license and sixty days without a driver’s license.

Does Washington Have Ammunition And Firearm Restrictions?

There are no ammunition restrictions in Washington. However, there is a prohibition for the possession of machine guns and automatic firearms except for law enforcement officers, peace officers, military members, and federally licensed individuals.

Is Washington A Preemption Gun Law State?

Yes, the state government has the authority to regulate firearms except that local municipalities may:

  • Control the shooting of firearms within their boundaries for public safety.
  • Prohibit or restrict the possession of firearms in public places like stadiums, event centers in local areas, and counties.
  • Also, the supreme court allows employers in local municipalities to control or prohibit employees from possessing firearms while they are on duty within the premises of a law court.

Can I Conceal Carry Firearms While Hunting In Washington?

Yes, Washington gun law does not prohibit concealed carry of firearms while hunting.

However, it is a prohibition to shoot wildlife with such firearms, especially during bow hunting.

What Is The Age Requirement For The Possession Of Firearms In Washington?

You must be at least eighteen years old before you can possess firearms legally in Washington.

Relevant Gun Laws Permits And Legislature In Washington

Some of Washington pistol permit laws relating to the possession of firearms in the state include the following:

Possession Of Firearms In Private Vehicles

You can possess firearms in private vehicles if you have a pistol permit Washington or a gun license from a state that it recognizes if:

  • The firearm is in possession of the licensee.
  • The licensee remains in the vehicle where the firearm is at all times.
  • The licensee is not in the vehicle, but the firearm is locked away in a compartment or trunk of the car in such a way that it is out of public sight.

If you are carrying a firearm in your vehicle without a pistol license, it must not be visible from outside.

[Wash. Rev. Code 9.41.050(2)(a) and 9.41.050(3)(a)]

Possession Of Firearms In Roadside Areas

You can conceal carry firearms in roadside areas of the state as long as you have a Washington gun license or any permit from another state it recognizes.

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

According to the statutes, [Wash. Admin. Code 352-32-120], [Wash Admin. Code 332-52-145] and [Wash. Admin. Code 220-500-140] you can possess firearms in these places as long as you have a gun license issued by Washington or any state that it recognizes.

Possession Of Firearms In Restaurant And Bar Areas

You can possess firearms in restaurant areas of the state if you have a Washington gun license or anyone from a state it recognizes.

However, it is prohibited to possess firearms in bar areas, even if it is a restaurant and bar venture.

[Wash. Rev. Code 9.41.300(d)]

Possession Of Firearms In Hotels

Washington does not have gun laws against the possession of firearms in Hotels or similar lodging ventures. Management of these places can develop a policy to regulate the possession of weapons.

If you plan on visiting a hotel, make sure that you check its website for more information about its firearm requirements.

Additional Resources

Washington Gun Laws
Washington Concealed Carry Laws
Washington Open Carry Laws

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