Gun Permits

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 required training.
  • Applicant will pay required fee at time of application; $55 cash for new permits to carry and $30 for renewals. The Linn County Sheriff's Office provides permits on hard plastic ID cards, which results in an additional $5 charge to cover the cost of the card. If you don't want the plastic ID card, you can opt for a paper permit and avoid the $5 added fee.  Permits to Acquire are $15.  ALL FEES MUST BE PAID IN CASH, NO CHECKS OR CREDIT/DEBIT CARDS ACCEPTED.
New & Renewal Applications
A “new application” is an application for an Iowa Non-Professional Permit to Carry Weapons filed when the applicant does not currently hold such permit or when the applicant does not file the application at least 30 days prior to the expiration of a currently held Iowa Non-Professional Permit to Carry Weapons.
A “renewal application” is an application for an Iowa Non-Professional Permit to Carry Weapons filed at least thirty days (but no more than 12 months) prior to the date of expiration of a currently held permit to carry weapons.

The "new" versus "renewal" issue has caused some confusion, so read our New vs. Renewal document below for further clarification and training requirements for each.
You can also view the updated FAQ page (below) from the Department of Public Safety, which addresses the renewal process and other frequent questions.

  • Application for Permit to Acquire a Handgun: This is also referred to as a "Permit to Purchase" a pistol or revolver.
  • 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.
  • Frequently Asked Questions: These are 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 as of September 2015 and contains detailed information on the renewal process.
  • Information regarding handgun training course
  • New vs. Renewal: This clarifies and gives examples of when an application qualifies as either a "new" application or a "renewal" application and the training necessary for each. This form provided by the Iowa Department of Public Safety.
  • Weapon Code Section: This contains copies of a few code sections from the Weapons Chapter (724) of the State of Iowa Code. This covers sections that are relevant to the changes in the Weapons law that took effect January 1, 2011. This also includes information on weapon laws that we get asked questions about frequently.