Concealed Pistol Licenses
Changes to Firearms Laws in Washington State - Effective July 1, 2019
Washington State Firearms laws and regulations are changing in 2019 due to voter-approved Initiative 1639, as well as processing changes from the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, or NICS. The Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs have created a guide to help explain the changes taking place to firearms laws, including age limits for possession, background checks, storage, and waiting periods:
*Due to a high volume of Concealed Pistol License (CPL) service requests at the Sheriff's Office in the County Courthouse, wait times can be up to two hours and it may take up to 30 days to process your request.
North, South and East Precinct services for CPLs are by appointment only.
For walk-in service at the County Courthouse please plan to arrive by 3 p.m. and bring a completed CPL Application (PDF) with you. The Courthouse location does not take appointments and services are offered on a "first come, first served" basis. Please be advised if you arrive after 3 p.m., we may not be able to accommodate your request until the next business day.
Obtaining the License
CPL applications must be completed in person. The application process may take up to 45 minutes. NOTE: We are only able to accept cash or check.
What to Bring
You will need to show proof of identification. Accepted photo identification is:
- A current passport
- A current Washington state driver’s license
- A current Washington state identification card
- Equivalent out of state identification
- Law enforcement identification
- Military identification card
Where to Apply
City residents may apply to the local law enforcement agency (Police Department) in the jurisdiction where they reside. County residents (unincorporated) may apply at the Sheriff’s Office precincts (see locations and hours under "Contact Us" on the right side of this page.)
Conditions that may prevent the ability to obtain a CPL are listed in RCW 9.41.070.
Permit Issue Date
It takes approximately 30 days to process an application. Issued permits can be picked up or mailed to you.
Washington has reciprocity for concealed pistol licenses issued by certain other states, so long as the handgun is carried in accordance with Washington law. The Washington State Attorney General's website provides a list of those states that have reciprocity with Washington for concealed pistol licenses.
The Sheriff’s Office will issue concealed pistol licenses to out-of-state residents. The waiting period may take up to 60 days for nonresidents.
Alien Firearms Licenses
The Department of Licensing has additional application information for resident aliens living in Washington state who wish to apply for a firearms license.
Please refer to our "Fees for Services" page.