NOTICE: IOWA'S GUN LAWS HAVE CHANGED CONSIDERABLY AS OF JULY 1, 2017. WE WILL CONTINUE TO UPDATE OUR WEBSITE AND INCLUDE INFORMATION RELATED TO THE NEW LAWS AND CHANGES TO OUR APPLICATION PROCESS.
Part of the new law includes a uniform permit card but that process will not be immediately available on July 1st. Our office is working closely with the State of Iowa on this process and will post more information as it becomes available. The new uniform permit cards are estimated to be ready in a couple months and a public announcement will be made, when they are ready.
To apply for a permit to carry a weapon (professional or nonprofessional) applicants must show a valid ID, on which the address must be current. A professional permit also requires an employer's authorization on the application, along with a letter on company letterhead stating they are employed with that company and requests the individual to carry a weapon while on duty.
You must be in line prior to 4:30 p.m. as it will take anywhere from 20 to 30 minutes to complete the application process. It will then take a few days to complete the rest of the process before the permit can be issued.
Iowa Code Requirements
Applicants must show proof that they have met the requirements set forth in Iowa Code Chapter 724 before receiving a permit. To summarize this code:
- Applicants must show proper identification.
- Applicants must apply for a permit to the sheriff of the county in which the applicant resides.
- Applicant must have completed any required training.
- Applicant will pay required fee at time of application; $50 for new permits to carry and $25 for Renewals and Duplicates.
- Permits to Acquire are $25 and these permits are now valid for 5 years.
- ALL FEES MUST BE PAID IN CASH OR WITH CREDIT/DEBIT CARD, CHECKS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.
Effective July 1, 2017, there is a 60 day renewal window. A person wishing to renew a Permit to Carry Weapons must apply within 30 days before the permit expires, or within 30 days after the permit expires, otherwise the higher NEW permit fee must be charged.
** Please note that while a permit can be renewed within 30 days after it expires, a person whose permit has expired should not go armed in a fashion that requires a permit until a person has renewed their permit.
New Permit ......... $50
Renewal .............. $25
Duplicate ............ $25
Permit to Acquire $25 (This permit is now valid for 5 years)
Training for Renewals
A person who holds (or held) a permit issued on or after 1/1/2011 is not required to complete another training course to renew or obtain a new permit to carry weapons, however, please note that even though re‐training is not required, completing another training course or taking other steps to learn about law changes could be highly beneficial to a person who intends to go armed.
Uniform Permit Cards
The new law requires that weapons permits be of uniform appearance, size, and content. For decades, Iowa’s standard permits have been large paper tear‐off forms that are not durable or convenient to carry. A number of years ago, rules adopted by the Iowa Department of Public Safety allowed Sheriffs Offices to develop and print wallet size permit cards of their own design and content. While this allowed many counties to develop better quality permits, it also resulted in wide variation in permit appearance and type. In passing HF 517, Iowa’s elected officials established a requirement that permit cards be standardized.
Permit Card Availability
As soon as HF 517 was signed into law, work began to identify the options to have truly uniform, durable, and secure permit cards. The Iowa Department of Public Safety has been working closely with Iowa’s 99 Sheriffs Offices to identify a method to generate uniform permit cards, while still allowing Sheriffs Offices to use their existing systems and procedures for processing applications, issuing permits, and storing permit records. To become operational with a system to print uniform permit cards, it is necessary to design the various permit card types (permit to acquire, nonprofessional permit to carry, professional permit to carry, etc…), acquire printing services and materials, provide measures to protect confidential permit related data, and develop rules and procedures for issuance of the permits. Despite the complexity of the initiative, DPS and Sheriffs Offices have been working diligently to become operational with a new permit printing system in just a few months following the law change. Though Sheriffs Offices and DPS are working cooperatively on the uniform permit card project, ultimately, each individual Sheriff’s Office will have to proceed according to the statewide rollout schedule specified by DPS. When the new permit cards are available, a public announcement will be made.
Most of the changes were made in House File 517. However, there were also some highly technical changes made in another bill, Senate File 516. To see the actual wording of the new laws, it would be necessary to read both House File 517 and Division V of Senate File 516. Both bills are available online at the following web addresses:
HF 517: https://www.legis.iowa.gov/legislation/BillBook?ga=87&ba=hf517
SF 516: https://www.legis.iowa.gov/legislation/BillBook?ga=87&ba=sf516
- Application for Permit to Acquire a Revolver or Pistol: This form is being updated and will be made available soon.
- Application for Permit to Carry Weapons: This is the current application for a Non-Professional Permit to Carry Weapons. A "carry permit" can also be used as a permit to purchase so you do not need both a carry permit and a purchase permit but you may get both if you want.
- 2017 Law Changes FAQ: Contains answers to frequently asked questions on the new weapons law. This form is provided by the Iowa Department of Public Safety. This form has been updated to reflect many law changes taking place July 1, 2017. The DPS will provide another more in-depth FAQ form as the details for obtaining the new uniform permits are worked out.
- Information regarding handgun training course
- Weapon Code Section: This link will be updated with the newly updated weapons law, once it is codified (estimated date of December 2017). For now, this link reflects the law, prior to 2017 changes.