Virginia Concealed Carry Permit Requirements

Applicant Requirements:

  1. You must be 21 years of age or older to apply for a concealed handgun permit.
  2. You will be required to submit to a background check.
  3. You must demonstrate handgun competence by completing a state-approved firearms training or gun safety course.*

Document Requirements:

  1. Documentation showing successful completion of an approved gun safety class or training program*
  2. Completed Application for Concealed Handgun Permit
  3. Non-residents must also submit a photograph, fingerprint card, and a photocopy of one valid form of photo identification issued by a governmental agency.

Issuing Authority:

Virginia Resident Concealed Handgun Permits are issued by the circuit court of the county or city in which the applicant resides. There is a circuit court in each city and county in Virginia. Nonresident Concealed Handgun Permits are issued by the Virginia State Police.

Permit Length:

Concealed carry permits are valid for five years.

Permit Cost:

Resident permits are $50. Non-resident permits are $100.

Permit Application Timeline:

The application processing time for a new Resident Concealed Handgun Permit is up to 45 days from the date the county receives your completed application.

Permit Renewal:

The fees and timeline for new permits also apply to permit renewals. Non-residents must submit a new photograph and fingerprint card. The state suggests that all renewal application packages be submitted at least 60 days prior to the expiration of the existing permit.

Permit Denial:

Residents who are denied a permit may request an appeal within 21 days, and a petition for review may be presented to the Court of Appeals. Non-residents who are denied a permit and are not satisfied with the explanation provided by the Firearms Transaction Center may appeal such denial to the Superintendent of State Police within 30 days.

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Resident Concealed Carry Permits

Virginia Resident Concealed Handgun Permit:

The Virginia Resident Concealed Handgun Permit is issued by the circuit court of the county or city where you reside. You must be 21 years of age or older and a resident of Virginia. For specific application instructions, contact the applicable court in your area.

Additional Resources:

For additional information about resident permit requirements, visit the Virginia State Police website.

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Non-Resident Concealed Carry Permits

Virginia Non-resident Concealed Handgun Permit:

The Virginia Non-resident Concealed Handgun Permit is issued by the Virginia State Police. You must be 21 years of age or older to apply for the permit.

How to Apply:

To apply for the out-of-state permit, you will need to request an Application Package by contacting the Virginia State Police Firearms Transaction Center. You can submit your request by standard mail or email. All written requests must include the applicant’s complete name, mailing address, and telephone number.

Instead of requesting an application package by mail, you may create and submit all the necessary information and documentation yourself. To prevent a delay in processing your application, be sure to review the application checklist to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information you provide, and to prevent a delay in the processing procedures.

Additional Resources:

Applying for a non-resident concealed carry permit requires additional documentation, including a fingerprint card, a photograph, and a photocopy of a government-issued ID. For additional information about non-resident permit requirements, visit the Virginia State Police website.

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Virginia State Police Firearms Transaction Center

Firearms Transaction Center
Nonresident Concealed Handgun Permits
Criminal Justice Information Services Division
Department of State Police
P.O. Box 85141
Richmond, VA 23285-5141

Email: [email protected]

Virginia Concealed Carry Reciprocity Map
This map is accurate as of October 2017.

Virginia Concealed Carry Reciprocity

Permits from Other States:

As of July 1, 2016, the holder of a valid concealed carry permit issued by another state may carry a concealed handgun in Virginia if:

  1. The holder of such permit or license is at least 21 years of age and…
  2. The permit or license holder carries valid photo identification issued by a government agency of any state, or by the U.S. Department of Defense or U.S. Department of State and…
  3. The holder displays the permit or license and the government-issued photo ID when requested by a law enforcement officer and...
  4. The holder has not previously had a Virginia concealed handgun permit revoked.

The law now requires Virginia to grant recognition to all states that issue permits. You can read more about the recent law change on the Virginia State Law website.

States That Recognize Virginia's Permit:

Virginia does have CCW reciprocity agreements with certain states. Some states will only recognize Virginia's resident permit at this time. Virginia permit holders should always check the other state's reciprocity laws to determine if their Virginia permit will be honored in that state.

Concealed Carry Permit Reciprocity Maps

Concealed carry reciprocity maps display the states that honor a concealed carry permit or license from another particular state. While Virginia recognizes concealed carry permits from every other issuing state, many states have tighter reciprocity laws. If you plan to carry a handgun in another state, make sure you check that state's reciprocity laws before doing so.

Concealed Carry Laws & Regulations

Shall-Issue State

Since Virginia is a Shall-Issue State, an applicant cannot be denied a concealed handgun permit unless he or she is disqualified under Virginia Code. Virginia issues Resident and Nonresident Concealed Handgun Permits.

Transportation of Firearms

A concealed handgun permit is not necessary when you are carrying a handgun in a personal, private motor vehicle or vessel and the handgun is secured in a container or compartment in the vehicle or vessel. More information on the transportation of firearms can be found on the Virginia State Police website.

Off-Limit Areas to Concealed Handgun Permit Holders

  1. Federal government buildings
  2. Private property when prohibited by the owner of the property, or where posted as prohibited
  3. A place of worship while a meeting for religious purposes is being held at such place, without good and sufficient reason
  4. Courthouse
  5. School property
  6. Airport terminal

*Refer to Virginia state law for a complete list of regulations.

Alcohol and Consumption

Virginia law states that is illegal for any person to carry a (permitted) concealed handgun in a public place while under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs. Virginia classifies this offense as a Class 1 misdemeanor.

Virginia does not prohibit concealed carry in an establishment that serves alcohol. However, no person who carries a concealed handgun onto the premises of any restaurant or club that serves alcohol may consume an alcoholic beverage while on the premises. This law does not apply to a federal, state, or local law enforcement officers.

Remember that concealed carry is off-limits when prohibited by the owner of the property. Refer to Virginia state law for the most current alcohol and consumption legislation.

We try to keep the information on this page as up to date as possible; however, we strongly advise that you verify this information with your local circuit court or the Virginia State Police. The information on this page is for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice.

Concealed Carry Laws Book

Open Carry Law

Open carry is allowed without a permit for people 18 years of age and older, but there are restrictions.

Assault Weapons:
Certain cities and counties disallow the open carry of assault weapons or shotguns with high-capacity magazines. These restrictions do not apply to valid concealed handgun permit holders.

For open carry in a vehicle, the firearm must be properly secured in a container or compartment within the vehicle. The container or compartment does not have to be locked, the firearm may be within the reach of the driver or a passenger, and the firearm may be loaded.

City and County Restrictions:
In most cases, open carry is generally accepted in the state of Virginia. However, there are cities and counties that have restrictions. Please refer to your specific city or county for more information on specific open carry legislation. You also may refer to Virginia state law for additional information.