Certain residents of North Carolina may be eligible to obtain a permit which would allow them to carry a concealed handgun under certain conditions. N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-415.11. No other weapons may be carried concealed pursuant to such permit.
North Carolina also allows out-of-state concealed handgun permittees to carry concealed handguns, pursuant to such permits, in North Carolina. N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-415.24(a). While carrying a handgun pursuant to such permit, qualified out-of-state permittees are held to the same standards as North Carolina permittees. Consequently, there are a number of areas where concealed handguns cannot be carried in North Carolina, regardless of the individual having a permit to carry a concealed weapon. Included on the North Carolina Department of Justice’s website is a list of “Do’s and Don’ts” for carrying a concealed handgun in North Carolina. In order to acquire a North Carolina permit, an individual must apply to the sheriff’s office in the county in which he/she resides. As part of the application process, the applicant must accomplish the following:
1. Complete an application, under oath, on a form provided by the sheriff’s office;
2. Pay a non-refundable fee of $80.00;
3. Allow the sheriff’s office to take two (2) full sets of fingerprints, which may cost up to $10.00;
4. Provide an original certificate of completion of an approved handgun safety course; and
5. Provide a release authorizing disclosure to the sheriff of any record concerning the applicant’s mental health or capacity.
N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-415.13.
Any person or entity who is given an original or photocopied release form as described in N.C.G.S. § 14-415.13(a)(5), must promptly disclose to the sheriff any records concerning the mental health or capacity of the applicant who signed the form and authorized the release of the records. The sheriff must forward this request and release for records within 10 days of receiving the application materials. No person, company, mental health provider, or governmental entity may charge additional fees to the applicant for background checks. N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14- 415.14(c).
NOTE: Permit fees for a North Carolina retired, sworn law enforcement officer can be reduced. The retired North Carolina officer must provide a copy of the officer’s letter of retirement from either the North Carolina Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System or the North Carolina Local Governmental Employees’ Retirement System, and written documentation from the head of the agency where the person was previously employed, indicating that the person was either involuntarily terminated nor under administrative or criminal investigation within six (6) months of retirement. Once presented, the fees are $45.00 for an initial application and $40.00 for a renewal application. N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14- 415.19(a1)(1-2).
The sheriff has forty-five (45) days from the time all application materials, to include receipt of mental health records, are received to either issue or deny a permit. N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14- 415.15(a). In order for an applicant to be approved, he/she must:
1. Be a citizen of the United States or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the United States;
2. Have been a resident of the State of North Carolina for not less than thirty (30) days immediately preceding the filing of the application;
3. Be at least twenty-one (21) years of age;
4. Not suffer from any physical or mental infirmity that prevents the safe handling of a handgun; and
5. Have successfully completed an approved firearms training course (unless specifically exempted from the course by State law). N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-415.12(a)(1-5).
The sheriff must deny the permit if certain prohibitions exist. The application must be denied if the applicant:
1. Is ineligible to possess or receive a firearm under federal or State law;
2. Is under indictment or against whom a finding of probable cause exists for a felony, or has ever been adjudicated guilty in any court of a felony;
3. Is a fugitive from justice;
4. Is an unlawful user of or addicted to marijuana, alcohol, or any depressant, stimulant or narcotic drug, or any other controlled substance;
5. Is currently, or has previously been adjudicated by a court, or administratively determined by a governmental agency whose decisions are subject to judicial review, to be lacking mental capacity or mentally ill. Receipt of previous consultative services or outpatient treatment alone shall not disqualify an applicant;
6. Has been discharged from the U.S. armed forces under conditions other than honorable;
7. Has been convicted of an impaired driving offense under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 20-138.1, 20-138.2 or 20-138.3 within three (3) years prior to the date of application submission;
8. Has had an entry of prayer for judgment continued for a criminal offense which would disqualify the applicant from obtaining a concealed handgun permit;
9. Is free on bond or personal recognizance pending trial, appeal, or sentencing for a crime which would disqualify him/her from obtaining a concealed handgun permit; or
10. Effective July 1, 2015 for all concealed handgun permit applications submitted on or after that date, an applicant who has been found guilty of or received a prayer for judgment continued or a suspended sentence for one of the following crimes listed in
(a) through (t), AND THREE YEARS HAS PASSED PRIOR TO SUBMITTING THE APPLICATION, can (if otherwise qualified) receive a concealed handgun permit: a. N.C.G.S. § 14-33(a), Simple assault; b. N.C.G.S. § 14-226.1, Violation of court orders; c. N.C.G.S. § 14-258.1, Furnishing poison, controlled substances, deadly weapons, cartridges, ammunition or alcoholic beverages to inmates of charitable, mental or penal institutions, or local confinement facilities; d. N.C.G.S. § 14-269.2, Carrying weapons on campus or other educational property; e. N.C.G.S. § 14-269.3, Carrying weapons into assemblies and establishments where alcoholic beverages are sold and consumed; f. N.C.G.S. § 14-269.4, Carrying weapons on State property and courthouses; g. N.C.G.S. § 14-269.6, Possession and/or sale of spring-loaded projectile knives; h. N.C.G.S. § 14-277, Impersonation of a law enforcement or other public officer; i. N.C.G.S. § 14-277.1, Communicating threats; j. N.C.G.S. § 14-277.2, Carrying weapons at parades and other public gatherings; k. N.C.G.S. § 14-283, Exploding dynamite cartridges and/or bombs (however violations for fireworks violations under N.C.G.S. § 14-414 are NOT a bar); 1. N.C.G.S. § 14-288.2, Rioting and inciting to riot; m. N.C.G.S. § 14-288.4(a)(1), Fighting or conduct creating the threat of imminent fighting or other violence; n. N.C.G.S. § 14-288.6, Looting and trespassing during an emergency; o. N.C.G.S. § 14-288.9, Assault on emergency personnel; 17 p. Former N.C.G.S. § 14-288.12, Violations of city State of Emergency Ordinances; q. Former N.C.G.S. § 14-288.13, Violations of county State of Emergency Ordinances; r. Former N.C.G.S. § 14-288.14, Violations of State of Emergency Ordinances; s. N. C. G. S . § 14-415.21(b), Violations of the standards for carrying a concealed weapon; t. N.C.G.S. § 14-415.26(d), Misrepresentation on certification of qualified retired law enforcement officers.