NC Concealed Carry FAQ

Who is able to get a concealed handgun permit?

To get a NC Concealed Handgun Permit you need to be a US citizen or permanent resident, a resident of North Carolina for at least 30 days and at least 21 years of age. You must also be able to legally own or possess  a firearm according to state and federal law. You must also have a “clean” record since a background check will be done by the FBI when actually applying for the permit itself.

What kind of offenses on my record could be used to deny me a permit?

There a number of offenses that will be checked for in your background including:

  • any felony
  • violation of court orders
  • any firearm or weapons offense
  • impersonating an officer/fireman/emergency medical technician
  • communicating threats
  • stalking
  • fighting/violence/breach of peace
  • child abuse
  • domestic violence
  • awaiting trial for any of the above crimes
  • DWI/DUI within the last three years
  • dishonorable discharge from the armed forces

If any of these are found on your record then you will likely be denied a concealed handgun permit. NOTE:  this is not a complete list of offenses. You will need to go to the NC DOJ website for the entire list. Or read it directly from the statute itself (NCGS 14-415.12) and read paragraphs (b) and (c).

How does the permit process work?

First, you must take and pass an approved NC Concealed Carry class from a duly certified instructor. TriggerAction teaches the approved curriculum and your instructor, Rich Wells, is certified by the NC Department of Justice. If you pass, you will receive a certificate indicating such. This certificate is then taken to the sheriff of the county in which you live. You will give them the certificate, fill out an application, they will take your fingerprints and you will pay them about $90. If you are former military then you should bring a copy of your DD 214 for proof of your discharge status.

How long is the permit certificate good for?

There is nothing in the NC state law that stipulates the length of time the certificate is valid for. This means it is up to the discretion of your sheriff so the time frame in which it will be honored can vary greatly. With this in mind we tell all of our students to take it to their sheriff AS SOON AS POSSIBLE! If you put it off it is VERY likely you will forget all about it or lose your certificate!

How long does it take after applying for a permit to actually get it?

This is dependent on the current load and the county in which you live. It might come back as soon as 30 days (but not likely) but in the worst of times it can take up to 3 months. You will then receive a letter from your sheriff telling you to either come down and pick up your permit or informing you the reason(s) why you were denied a permit.

How long is the permit good for?

The NC Concealed Handgun Permit is valid for 5 years. At the end of the 5 years you choose to let it expire or go through the application process (have another background check done) to renew it.

Once I have a Concealed Handgun Permit, do I still need to buy a Pistol Purchase Permit to buy a handgun?

No. The CHP replaces the PPP as long as your CHP is valid. Simply present your CHP (and valid ID) to the gun dealer or private seller when purchasing a handgun.

Overall, how does the class work?

An approved NC Concealed Carry class is dictated in a curriculum laid out by the State of North Carolina. Most of the time will be spent in the classroom (usually 7-8 hours) with the rest on the range for the shooting qualification (usually 2-3 hours). Classroom time  is largely comprised of teaching the law regarding justified self-defense and use of deadly force but also covered are handgun safety, operation and concealed carry issues as well as marksmanship and range operations. After this we head out to the range to administer the shooting qualification which is also mandated by the State curriculum.

So it’s an all-day class?

Yes, the State curriculum mandates a minimum of 8 hours. We start our classes at 8am and usually finish up around 7:00pm with some time plus or minus based on the class size.

So what must I do to pass the class?

You’ll need to clear three hurdles, so to speak. The first is to pass the legal examination regarding what was taught in the class regarding the law (use of deadly force, justified self-defense and concealed carry statutes). The second and third hurdles are firearm safety and marksmanship while out on the range. You must safely use your handgun during the qualification and you must show proficiency in using it (loading, firing, unloading and clearing) while target shooting.

What do I need to bring to the class?

The biggest items are a good attitude and a willingness to learn! But you will also need a pen or pencil to write with during the class, and eye/ear protection for the range portion. And be well rested since it is a long day!

Do I need to bring my own handgun?

We would strongly suggest you bring your own gun but if you are new to all of this and do not have your own just yet, you can rent one of ours ($15 fee + cost of ammo that you shoot).

Can I share my handgun with someone else?

Yes. If two or more of you are coming to the class but only have one gun you can share it among you shooting it on alternate rounds during the qualification.

I’m guessing I need to bring ammunition as well?

Yes, you should bring at least 50 rounds of ammo for the shooting qualification. If you rent a gun from us then you’ll also need to buy ammo for it (Walmart or gun shop) or buy it from us (22LR and 9mm only). We DO NOT allow students to bring reloaded ammunition for either their own guns or for use in ours!

What caliber of handgun can I use for the shooting qualification?

Whatever caliber you shoot well with! If you rent one of our handguns then you will be shooting 22LR or 9mm which is what we have available for rent.

What type of handgun should I bring?

Only revolvers and semi-automatic handguns in good working condition are allowed for use on the range. We do prohibit single-action cowboy revolvers from being used because most people do not know how to safely and efficiently load/unload them. And we discourage the use of small pocket pistols and snub-nose revolvers since we have found that the vast majority do not know how to shoot them well at the longer distances required for the class. If you insist on bringing them to the qualification then we strongly suggest you put a LOT of time into practicing with them before attending the class.

What is the range portion of the class like?

Our range is located outdoors on private property so you’ll need to dress accordingly for the weather conditions the day of the class (heat/cold/fluids). The State mandates that you shoot a minimum of 30 rounds at three distances from the target (3/5/7 yards) proving that you can be both safe and proficient with your handgun.

Since I don’t have a concealed handgun permit, how should I transport my handgun?

Unfortunately there are no regulations in NC state law which govern how to transport firearms so we must look to federal guidelines on firearm transportation. To be the safest, you should make sure your firearm is fully unloaded and stored as far away from vehicle occupants so that it can not be deemed to be readily accessible. It is best if you can lock it in its own container. And store the firearm and its ammunition as far away from each other as possible.

Can I bring my firearm into the classroom?

Where we teach the class has a bearing on whether this is allowed or not. Most of the time you can bring a FULLY UNLOADED handgun into the class but we are at the whim of those whom we rent our classroom facilities. The final word regarding your actual class will be found in the e-mail sent to the class participants a few days before the class itself. Also be aware that ammunition is NEVER, EVER allowed in the classroom.