How to Get a Firearm License

Canada is a vast and peaceful country that has one of the lowest crime rates in the world. Still, if you need to get a firearm license as to increase your personal security or as part of your job requirements, the guide below will take you through the five steps of the application process.

Where to Apply for a License?
First, keep in mind that the legal term for a firearm license in Canada is Possession and Acquisition License (PAL), while the application and approval is monitored by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). This branch is also responsible for the management and control of the already issued PALs. It usually takes RCMP at least a month and a half to process a new PAL application. With these basic notions in mind, you can proceed to the actual application process.

Step 1 – Sit a Test
All Canadian citizens and permanent residents who wish to carry firearms have to pass the Canadian Firearms Safety Course and successfully pass the final test before filing their PAL application. CFSC covers basic safety practices on using firearms, as well as firing techniques, different kinds of ammunition, safe storage practices, and main responsibilities of the firearms owners.

Step 2 – Obtain Application
Having completed the basic firearms safety course, you have to now get a PAL application. You have two ways to go about obtaining your application: download an online form from the website of RCMP or call your local police station to order one.

Step 3 – Fill in Application
Under step three, you need to fill the application you obtained, which is usually a time-consuming process. The first section of the PAL application contains personal information about the applicant such as his or her full name, residential address, whether he or she has a criminal record, the name of the applicant’s current or former spouse, and the names of at least two reference persons who have known the applicant for not less than three years. Keep in mind that your reference persons and your former or current spouse should also sign the PAL application for you. So as to validate your PAL application, you must also have it signed by a photo guarantor – a person who has known you for more than 1 year and who guarantees that you are the person on the photo included in your PAL application.

Step 4 – Collect Supporting Documentation
Having completed and signed your PAL application, you should now attach to it your supporting documents: a certificate of successfully passed CFSC and a recent photo, which must be signed by the photo guarantor on the back side.

With regard to the PAL application fees, you will pay $60 for an ordinary rifle or shotgun and $80 for a semi-automatic gun or handgun. These are payable by credit card, cheque or money order, depending on your preferred payment method.

Step 5 – Mail Application
Finally, you should mail your application to the Central Processing Site and wait for their response.