Firearms Training Requirement for Concealed Carry Weapons License for all States and United States Territories

I have compiled a list of the fifty states and American territories and their firearm training requirements. Please refer to the USA Carry website for more information.


ALABAMA – No

ALASKA – No

AMERICAN SAMOA – No. Prohibits carrying firearms and does not issue CCW permits.

ARIZONA – Yes

“Has ever satisfactorily completed a firearms safety training program authorized by the department of public safety pursuant to subsection N, paragraph 1 of this section or has ever demonstrated competence with a firearm as prescribed by subsection N, paragraph 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 or 9 of this section and provides adequate documentation that the person has satisfactorily completed a training program or demonstrated competence with a firearm in any state or political subdivision in the United States. For the purposes of this paragraph, “adequate documentation” means:

  • A certificate, card or document of completion from a firearms safety training program authorized pursuant to subsection N, paragraph 1 of this section, dated not more than five years earlier than the date of application, that has affixed to it the stamp, signature or seal of the instructor or organization that conducted the program, or a current or expired permit issued by the department of public safety pursuant to this section.
  • An original or copy of a certificate, card or document that shows the applicant has completed any course or class prescribed by subsection N, paragraph 2, 3, 4, 5, 8 or 9 of this section or an affidavit from the instructor, school, club or organization that conducted or taught the course or class attesting to the applicant’s completion of the course or class.
  • An original or a copy of a United States department of defense form 214 (DD-214) indicating an honorable discharge or general discharge under honorable conditions, a certificate of completion of basic training or any other document demonstrating proof of the applicant’s current or former service in the United States armed forces as prescribed by subsection N, paragraph 6 of this section.
  • An original or a copy of a concealed weapon, firearm or handgun permit or a license as prescribed by subsection N, paragraph 7 of this section.”

ARKANSAS – Yes

Satisfactorily completes an approved firearms safety program

CALIFORNIA – Yes

The applicant has completed a course of training (16-24 hours)

COLORADO – Yes

Demonstrates competence with a handgun by one of the following means:
a. evidence of experience with a firearm through participation in organized shooting competitions or current military service
b. certified firearms instructor
c. honorable discharge from the Armed Forces within past three years
d. proof of pistol qualification in Armed Forces within past ten years, if discharged
e. retired law enforcement with pistol qualification within past ten years
f. proof of completion of a handgun training class within the past ten years

CONNECTICUT – Yes

Has successfully completed an approved handgun safety course

DELAWARE – No

FLORIDA – Yes

To obtain a Florida Concealed Weapon License, you must be 21 years of age or older and display competency with a firearm.

GEORGIA – Depends

Georgia has generally pre-empted the regulation of firearms with the exception that cities/counties may regulate the discharge of firearms and laws governing the carry of firearms by city/county employees while working.

GUAM – No

HAWAII – Yes

Qualified to use the firearm

IDAHO – Yes

Proof of training – You must demonstrate familiarity with the firearm. Usually, one of the following courses is required:
a. A hunter education or hunter safety course approved by the Idaho Department of Fish and Game or a similar agency of another state;
b. A National Rifle Association firearms safety or training course or any National Rifle Association hunter education course;
c. A firearms safety or training course or class offered by a law enforcement agency, community college, college, university, or private or public school or firearms training school. You may wish to utilize instructors certified by the National Rifle Association or the Idaho State Police;
d. A law enforcement firearms safety or training course or class offered for security guards, investigators, special deputies, law enforcement agencies or security enforcement agencies.

ILLINOIS – Yes

Successfully complete 16 hours of firearms training, including classroom and range instruction.

INDIANA – No

IOWA – Yes

There is also the following training requirements:

  1. Completion of any National Rifle Association (NRA) handgun safety training course.
  2. Completion of any handgun safety training course available to the general public offered by a law enforcement agency, community college, college, private or public institution or organization, or firearms training school, utilizing instructors certified by the National Rifle Association or certain other firearms training certifying bodies (such as the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy).
    Completion of any handgun safety training course offered for security guards, investigators, special deputies, or any division or subdivision of a law enforcement or security enforcement agency approved by the Iowa Department of Public Safety.
  3. Completion of small arms training while serving with the armed forces of the United States as evidenced by any of the following:
    a. For personnel released or retired from active duty, possession of an honorable discharge or general discharge under honorable conditions.
    b. For personnel on active duty or serving in one of the national guard or reserve components of the armed forces of the United States, possession of a certificate of completion of basic training with a service record of successful completion of small arms training and qualification.
  4. Completion of a law enforcement agency firearms training course that qualifies a peace officer to carry a firearm in the normal course of the peace officer’s duties.

The following training documentation is accepted:

  • Photocopy of certificate of handgun training
  • Honorable/general discharge or DD-214
  • Affidavit attesting to completion of handgun training
  • Certificate of completion of military basic training
  • Qualified on a firing range under the supervision of a certified instructor (applies to renewal application only)

KANSAS – Yes

A photocopy of a certificate signed by an AG approved instructor showing the applicant’s completion of an approved training course. A certificate of completion may not be required if: (a) you are a retired law enforcement officer and apply within 8 years of retiring; (b) you are a state corrections or parole officer, or federal corrections officer who qualified with a handgun within the 12 months preceding application; or (c) you are a resident of Kansas in possession of a valid concealed handgun license issued by a jurisdiction whose training is equal to or greater than the Kansas training requirement.

KENTUCKY – Yes

Demonstrate competence with a firearm by successful completion of a firearms safety or training course offered or approved by the Department of Criminal Justice Training.

LOUISIANA – Yes

In addition to meeting the qualifications in R.S. 40:1379.3(C), an applicant must demonstrate competence with a handgun by completion of an approved firearms safety or training course taught by an NRA or P.O.S.T. certified instructor that is registered with State Police, or completion of small arms training while serving in the military (as evidenced by a DD-214), [active service members, reservist and national guard members must include a clear photocopy of their military ID (front & back) with a copy of their last qualification record from their 201 file], or possession of a current valid license to carry a concealed weapon issued by a parish law enforcement officer.

MAINE – Yes

  1. Demonstrates to the issuing authority a knowledge of handgun safety. The applicant may fully satisfy this requirement by submitting to the issuing authority, through documentation in accordance with this subparagraph, proof that the applicant has within 5 years prior to the date of application completed a course that included handgun safety offered by or under the supervision of a federal, state, county or municipal law enforcement agency or a firearms instructor certified by a private firearms association recognized as knowledgeable in matters of handgun safety by the issuing authority or by the state in which the course was taken. A course completion certificate or other document, or a photocopy, is sufficient if it recites or otherwise demonstrates that the course meets all of the requirements of this subparagraph.
  2. As an alternative way of fully satisfying this requirement, an applicant may personally demonstrate knowledge of handgun safety to an issuing authority, if the issuing authority is willing to evaluate an applicant’s personal demonstration of such knowledge. The issuing authority is not required to offer this 2nd option.
  3. The demonstration of knowledge of handgun safety to the issuing authority may not be required of any applicant who holds a valid state permit to carry a concealed firearm as of April 15, 1990 or of any applicant who was or is in any of the Armed Forces of the United States and has received at least basic firearms training.

MARYLAND – No

MASSACHUSETTS – Yes

Approved training course given by a Massachusetts state certified instructor within the last year

MICHIGAN – Yes

Applicant files their application with the county clerk in the county in which the individual resides. This must include: (1) a copy of the certificate of completion of the pistol safety training course, and (2) a passport quality photograph.

MINNESOTA – Yes

Must provide certificate of completed authorized firearms training. Training by a certified instructor and completed within one year of an original or renewal application. (624.714, Subd. 2a)

MISSISSIPPI – No

MISSOURI – Yes

received the required firearms safety training at least eight hours in length

MONTANA – Yes

An applicant for a permit under this section must, as a condition to issuance of the permit, be required by the sheriff to demonstrate familiarity with a firearm by:
a. Completion of a hunter education or safety course approved or conducted by the department of fish, wildlife, and parks or a similar agency of another state;
b. Completion of a firearms safety or training course approved or conducted by the department of fish, wildlife, and parks, a similar agency of another state, a national firearms association, a law enforcement agency, an institution of higher education, or an organization that uses instructors certified by a national firearms association;
c. Completion of a law enforcement firearms safety or training course offered to or required of public or private law enforcement personnel and conducted or approved by a law enforcement agency;
d. Possession of a license from another state to carry a firearm, concealed or otherwise, that is granted by that state upon completion of a course described in subsections (3)(a) through (3)(c); or
e. Evidence that the applicant, during military service, was found to be qualified to operate firearms, including handguns.

NEVADA – Yes

Obtain Firearm Training (Usually a course specifically for CCW Permits)

NEBRASKA – Yes

Show proof that the applicant has completed, within 3 years of application, a course approved by Nebraska State Patrol, evidencing knowledge and competency with regard to:
a. handling a handgun and appropriate ammunition
b. demonstrating safe firing and handling
c. federal, state, and local laws pertaining to handguns, firearms, self-defense, various levels of assault, and justifiable homicide
d. proper storage of a firearm
e. techniques for avoiding violent confrontation
f. is over 21 years of age
g. must prove that they are a member of active, reserve, or National Guard military forces and has received, within three years of application, handgun training which would satisfy the above requirements.

NEW HAMPSHIRE – No

NEW JERSEY – Yes

The applicant must meet the requirements of the Permit to Purchase and FID, provide personal information, be fingerprinted, prove his familiarity with the use of handguns, have three reputable people knowing the person for at least three years and have a “justifiable need to carry a handgun.”

NEW MEXICO – Yes

Has satisfactorily completed a firearms training course approved by the department for the category and caliber of handgun that the applicant wants to be licensed to carry as a concealed handgun.

NEW YORK – Depends

Westchester County may require the applicant to successfully complete a firearms safety course and test in addition to meeting the other requirements. Other counties also require a safety course for license issuance.

NORTH CAROLINA – Yes

has successfully completed an approved firearms safety and training course which involves the actual firing of handguns and instruction in the law governing the carrying of a concealed handgun and the use of deadly force;

NORTH DAKOTA – No

NORTHERN MARIANAS – Prohibits firearms and does not issue CCW permits

OHIO – Yes

Certification of competency with a firearm

OKLAHOMA – Yes

Complete the required firearms safety and training class or apply for and receive an exemption

OREGON – Yes

  • Demonstrate competence with a handgun by any one of the following means:
  • Completion of any hunter education or hunter safety course approved by the State
  • Department of Fish and Wildlife or a similar agency of another state if handgun safety was a component of the course;
  • Completion of any National Rifle Association firearms safety or training course if handgun safety was a component of the course;
  • Completion of any firearms safety or training course or class available to the general public offered by law enforcement, community college, or private or public institution or organization or firearms training school utilizing instructors certified by the National Rifle Association or a law enforcement agency if handgun safety was a component of the course;
  • Completion of any law enforcement firearms safety or training course or class offered for security guards, investigators, reserve law enforcement officers or any other law enforcement officers if handgun safety was a component of the course;
  • Presents evidence of equivalent experience with a handgun through participation in organized shooting competition or military service;
  • Is licensed or has been licensed to carry a firearm in this state, unless the license has been revoked; or
  • Completion of any firearms training or safety course or class conducted by a firearms instructor certified by a law enforcement agency or the National Rifle Association if handgun safety was a component of the course.

PENNSYLVANIA – No

PUERTO RICO – Does not issue CCW permits to civilians

RHODE ISLAND – Yes

Proof of qualification before a certified weapons instructor; i.e., N.R.A. Instructor or Police range instructor must be supplied along with a copy of the instructor’s NRA/FBI firearms instructor’s certification. Qualifications will only be accepted up to one year old and you cannot qualify yourself.

SOUTH CAROLINA – Yes

Submit proof of training

  • Original or certified copy of training certificate
  • Must be within three (3) years before filing an application
  • Shows that you successfully completed a basic or advanced handgun education course offered by a state, county, or municipal law enforcement agency or a nationally recognized organization that promotes gun safety
  • Must included information on the statutory and case law of South Carolina relating to handguns and to the use of deadly force
  • Must include information on handgun use and safety
  • Must include information on the proper storage practice for handguns with an emphasis on storage practices that reduces the possibility of accidental injury to a child
  • Must involve the actual firing of the handgun in the presence of the instructor
  • Any military that can demonstrate the completion of basic military training provided by any branch of the United States military by submitting their DD214 form
  • Any retired law enforcement officer who produces proof that he is a graduate of the Criminal Justice Academy or that he was a law enforcement officer prior to the requirement for graduation from the Criminal Justice Academy
  • Any instructor certified by the National Rifle Association or another SLED-approved competent national organization that promotes the safe use of handguns
  • Any person who can demonstrate to the Director of SLED or his designee that he has a proficiency in both the use of handguns and state laws pertaining to handguns
  • Any active duty police handgun instructor
  • Any person who has a SLED-certified or approved competitive handgun shooting classification
  • Any member of the active or reserve military, or a member of the National Guard

SOUTH DAKOTA – No

TENNESSEE – Yes

TEXAS – No

UTAH – No

VERMONT – No

VIRGIN ISLANDS – No

VIRGINIA – Yes

The court shall require proof that the applicant has demonstrated competence with a handgun and the applicant may demonstrate such competence by one of the following, but no applicant shall be required to submit to any additional demonstration of competence:

1. Completing any hunter education or hunter safety course approved by the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries or a similar agency of another state;
2. Completing any National Rifle Association firearms safety or training course;
3. Completing any firearms safety or training course or class available to the general public offered by a law-enforcement agency, junior college, college, or private or public institution or organization or firearms training school utilizing instructors certified by the National Rifle Association or the Department of Criminal Justice Services;
4. Completing any law-enforcement firearms safety or training course or class offered for security guards, investigators, special deputies, or any division or subdivision of law enforcement or security enforcement;
5. Presenting evidence of equivalent experience with a firearm through participation in organized shooting competition or current military service or proof of an honorable discharge from any branch of the armed services;
6. Obtaining or previously having held a license to carry a firearm in this Commonwealth or a locality thereof, unless such license has been revoked for cause;
7. Completing any firearms training or safety course or class conducted by a state-certified or National Rifle Association-certified firearms instructor;
8. Completing any governmental police agency firearms training course and qualifying to carry a firearm in the course of normal police duties; or
9. Completing any other firearms training which the court deems adequate.

WASHINGTON – No

WASHINGTON D.C. – DOes not issue CCW permits

WEST VIRGINIA – Yes

Have successfully completed one of several specified forms of handgun training

WISCONSIN – Yes

Submit a copy of your proof of training

WYOMING – Yes

Demonstrates familiarity with a firearm. A legible photocopy of a certificate of completion of any of the courses or classes or a notarized affidavit from the instructor, school, club, organization or group that conducted or taught the course or class attesting to the completion of the course or class by the applicant or a copy of any document which shows completion of the course or class or evidences participation of firearms competition, shall constitute evidence of qualification under this paragraph. Any one (1) of the following activities listed in this paragraph shall be sufficient to demonstrate familiarity with a firearm:

  • Completion of any certified firearm safety or training course utilizing instructors certified by the National Rifle Association or the Wyoming law enforcement academy
  • Completion of any law enforcement firearms safety or training course or class offered for security guards, investigators, special deputies, or any division of law enforcement or security enforcement
  • Experience with a firearm through participation in an organized handgun shooting competition or military service
  • Completion of any firearms training or safety course or class conducted by a state certified or National Rifle Association certified firearms instructor
  • Be certified as proficient in firearms safety by any Wyoming law enforcement agency under procedures established by that agency
  • Honorable retirement as a federal or state peace officer who has a minimum of ten (10) years of service
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