Wear and Carry Permit Applications, Denials, Modifications and Revocations
Before you may legally conceal carry a handgun or carry a loaded handgun in a vehicle, you must acquire a Wear and Carry Permit. Unfortunately, unlike most states, it is extremely difficult to obtain a Wear and Carry Permit in Maryland, without experienced counsel, who is aware of the nuances of the law and current positions and policies of the Maryland State Police.
As Maryland does not have reciprocity with any other states, in order to be able to lawfully carry a loaded firearm on your person or in a vehicle, one must obtain a Maryland Wear and Carry Permit.
Who Is Eligible For A Wear And Carry Permit?
Any individual, 18 years of age or older, who meets the following criteria is eligible; although, the issuance is discretionary:
Has not been convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor for which a sentence of imprisonment for more than one year has been imposed; or convicted of a criminal offense for which you could have been sentenced to more than 2 years incarceration;
Has not been convicted of a crime involving the possession, use, or distribution of a controlled dangerous substance;
Is not presently an alcoholic, addict, or habitual user of a controlled dangerous substance unless under legitimate medical direction;
Based on an investigation, has not exhibited a propensity for violence or instability that may reasonably render the person’s possession of a handgun a danger to the person or others;
Has a Good and Substantial reason to wear, carry, or transport a handgun, such as finding that the permit is necessary as a reasonable precaution against danger;
Personal Protection: A Good and Substantial reason for a non-employment related application (i.e. general self protection) requires documented evidence of recent threats, robberies, and/or assaults, supported by official police reports or notarized statements from witnesses. Absent clear documentation, these are the most difficult permits to obtain.
Owner or Employee of a Business: A Good and Substantial reason related to employment requires submission of documentation reflecting the existence of the business, documentation of active cash flow for the business and if the permit is being sought by an employee, a letter from the employer on business letterhead explaining why the employee needs to carry a handgun as part of his/her duties.
As of October 1, 2013, has successfully completed the Maryland State Police approved firearms training course within 2 year prior to submitting the original or renewal application OR is exempt. Those who are exempt, include:
Those who are an active law enforcement officer with a law enforcement agency of the United States, the State or any local law enforcement agency in the State;
Those who are an active, retired, or honorably discharged member of the armed forces of the United States or the National Guard;
Those who are a Qualified Handgun Instructor registered with the Maryland State Police;
Those who have successfully completed a firearms training course given by a Qualified Handgun Instructor. For original applicants, this is a 16 hour course and for renewals it is an 8 hour course, where you must demonstrate gun safety and proficiency with a minimum score of 70% accuracy. For non-security personnel, this means shooting at least 25 rounds, from no further than 15 yards and score at least 70% accuracy.
You must be fingerprinted and have a background check performed through an authorized company. The fee for this is not included in the MSP fee. You are responsible for paying any assessed fees by the authorized company. Typically, you can expect between $50-75.
You must submit two 2×2 photographs of yourself.
The cost, regardless of approval, restricted approval or denial, is $75.00.
It is imperative, to ensure that no arguments are waived, that you have competent counsel prepare your application to ensure that all appropriate and necessary arguments and documentation are provided.
What If You’re Denied Or Issued A Restricted Permit?
In the event the Maryland State Police either denies your permit or places restrictions on your permit, which you do not agree with, you only have 10 days from receipt of the letter to request 1. an informal review; 2. a Handgun Permit Review Board hearing; or 3. both an informal review and Handgun Permit Review Board hearing. The request for review should be handled by competent counsel, who is familiar with the process and who can ensure that any request includes the appropriate and necessary arguments and documentation to ensure that your rights are protected.
How Are Renewals Handled?
The MSP does NOT SEND OUT RENEWAL NOTICES. It is imperative that you keep track of when your permit expires
You must submit all the same, but updated, information and documentation as you did originally; however, effective October 1, 2016, fingerprints are no longer be required for renewal application submissions. Your completed renewal application (i.e. you must have also completed your renewal training, unless exempt) must be RECEIVED at least two weeks prior to expiration. The MSP on its website under the FAQ has stated:
As long as the renewal application has been received at the Handgun Permit Section at least two (2) weeks prior to the expiration date of the current handgun permit, you are still allowed to carry on the expired permit until you receive your renewed permit. If the application is returned to you for incompleteness and you resubmit it after the two (2) weeks, you will not be allowed to carry your handgun.
If you are interested in obtaining your Maryland Wear and Carry Permit and want counsel who not only has experience handling Wear and Carry Permits and challenges to restrictions, but also has an unrestricted license, contact us today to discuss your options.