The Process is Simple
*UPDATE 6-25-22- The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on June 23, 2022 in the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association v. Bruen case that the 2nd Amendment extends to the right for protection outside of the home. The justices ruled 6-3 that it was unconstitutional to require a special need in order to obtain a CCW permit. Effectively, the California Attorney General quickly issued an AG Alert that directed all law enforcement agencies that issue permits to stop requiring a “Good Cause” reason from applicants. It is yet to be seen what other requirements will now be added by way of demonstrating “Good Character” or what new “sensitive areas” may be added to the list of prohibited locations to carry firearms, but the current situation will most likely see a very quick expansion of issuance of licenses. Future California laws will be tested in the courts according the new standards set by the Supreme Court this week.
You may have heard the news that the policies regarding California Concealed Firearm Licenses, also known as “CCW Permits”, have become less restrictive in a few counties and you’d like to know how to go about obtaining one. The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department was the center of a major court decision in the 2014 Peruta vs. San Diego District Court ruling. The court sided in favor of the plaintiff Peruta, citing that the county CCW process was too restrictive. Although the ruling was later overturned in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals’ “en banc” panel, the SDCSD began issuing permits in a much less restrictive manner.
While San Diego does currently require that you provide evidence that you are at greater risk to becoming a victim of violence than the general public, the sheriff has greatly broadened the scope of what they consider “good cause”. Reportedly, since 2017 the sheriff has not denied an applicant solely based on their “good cause” statement. In fact, the great majority of people who apply for a license- without a prohibiting criminal background- will be granted a CCW license in San Diego. When granted, the applicant will be permitted to legally carry a loaded and concealed handgun in public within California, with the exception of a few restricted areas where firearms are not allowed. Some San Diego County residents have always desired to obtain a permit, but are still very hesitant to apply because they are worried the process is complex. It’s not complex and the following steps will guide you through it.
1. Go online and read the SD Sheriff’s CCW issuing policy HERE. Then go the Permitium website HERE and complete the online CCW application. If you desire, you may save your place in the application and come back to it after you’ve filled out the first few pages. The application will ask you to upload certain documents like utility bills to establish your residency in the county and a copy of your driver’s license or state ID.
This is also where you also upload your “Good Cause” statement and supporting documentation. You do not need to upload any character reference letters or a letter from your employer if that is part of your good cause reasons (unless you are stating that your employer requires you to have a CCW for your job).
At the end of the online application submission, you will pay your initial application fee and then you’ll be able to pick a date for an appointment at the sheriff’s office to have your fingerprints done and your picture taken.
2. Attend your appointment at SDCSD and have your fingerprints and photo taken.
3. Wait for your background to be completed (less than 90 days). An email will then be sent to you with an approval letter. This email also directs you to take the mandated 8 hour training class from an approved county instructor. San Diego currently wants applicants to wait until AFTER they receive an approval letter before taking the required training class.
4. Choose your firearms training provider from the sheriff’s approved list of providers. Complete your class and upload your training certificate to the sheriff’s Permitium website. We can provide your approved training either by private appointment at your home or office in San Diego County or you can join us in Orange County for public classes. The bulk of your classroom training can even be done virtually through our online blended learning option.
5. After uploading your training certificate, the SDCSD will contact you to pay the remainder of your issuance fee and to schedule your final appointment to pick up your physical permit.