Clerk of Circuit Court

Concealed Handgun Permit

 


Obtaining a Concealed Handgun Permit

 

Applications are available in the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Monday thru Friday, and may be downloaded by clicking on the following link:  Concealed Handgun Permit Application
 
First-time applicant must submit applications in person at the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office.  Renewal applications may be submitted in person or by mail. 
 
Persons seeking to obtain a concealed handgun permit must apply in the city or county of their residence.  Only Smyth County residents may apply through the Smyth County Circuit Court.  Individuals who are not residents of Virginia must apply through the Virginia State Police.
 
All applicants must present a valid photo ID with their application.
 
First time applications must provide proof of competency with a handgun.  Individuals holding permits from other states who wish to obtain a permit from the Court must provide proof of competency with a handgun, as well, unless that state has a reciprocity agreement or an informal mutual recognition agreement with Virginia.  A list of states having such agreements with Virginia can be found online at the Virginia State Police website at www.vsp.state.va.us
 
Renewal applicants must provide a copy of their existing permit to avoid having to provide proof of competency with a handgun. 
 
Effective October 1, 2017, the processing fee is $15.  Payment may be made by cash, check, money order, or by most major debit and credit cards.  Please know that debit and credit card payments are not accepted after 4:30 p.m.



Ways to Demonstrate Competence with a Handgun

  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 for 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 experienced 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, including an electronic, video, or on-line course 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;  

  9.  Completing any other firearms training deemed adequate by the Court.

 Applicants should provide a photocopy of a certificate of completion of any of the courses or classes; an affidavit from the instructor, school, club, organization, or group that conducted or taught such 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 in firearms competition. Click for a list of classes available in Smyth County.


How long does it take to process applications?

  • Processing applications can take up to 45 days. The Sheriff’s Office performs background checks and then forwards this information to the Commonwealth’s Attorney, who returns the file to the Court.  Either the Clerk or Judge may grant a permit, but only the Judge may deny a permit.  If an application is neither granted nor denied within 45 days, the Clerk mails a certified copy of the application to the applicant, and that certified copy of the application becomes a de facto permit, which shall be good for 90 days from the date certified.

  • Applicants who are granted a permit will receive their permit in the mail.  As a courtesy, the Clerk offers to laminate the permit at no charge, to protect the permit from wear-and-tear during the five years that it is in effect.

Revised 10/02/2017