Step-by-Step Guide to Applying for an FID Card and Handgun Permit in New Jersey

Hey there, New Jersey! Ready to exercise your 2nd Amendment rights? If you’re in the Garden State and looking to buy firearms, this guide is custom-made just for you.

What You Need to Know Upfront
Apply for:

  • FID Card: Necessary for buying long guns, ammunition, and obtaining a Concealed Carry Permit (CCW).
  • Gun Purchase Permit: A must-have if you’re looking to buy handguns. Each handgun requires its own separate Gun Purchase Permit.

Age Requirements

  • Long Guns (Rifles or Shotguns): Gotta be 18 or older.
  • Handguns: 21 is the magic number.


  • Valid Driver’s License: Non-negotiable, folks.
  • Be of Legal Age: Depends on the firearm type you’re eyeing.
  • Clean Record: Do not fall into any of the disqualifiers.
  • Out-of-state applicants: must have proof of secondary residency (Property Tax Bill or Lease agreement)

Disqualifiers (*See N.J.S.A. 2C:39-7): Some people cannot possess firearms, even temporarily.
You shouldn’t apply or possess a firearm if you:

  • Have been convicted of a crime (if so, consult an attorney)
  • Are drug-dependent or an alcoholic (recovered alcoholics are exempt)
  • Have certain mental disorders
  • Are under a restraining order
  • Are a fugitive from justice

Let’s Get to the Steps!

  1. Visit FARS Website: Head over to FARS online portal.
  2. Agency ORI Number: Grab your local police department’s ORI number from our website under the SERVICES tab. Or CLICK HERE

Out of state applicants need to apply using the ORI Number of the closest State Police Barrack in a non-toll road. More info in the application website.

  1. Complete Application & Fees: Fill in all required fields. The initial FID card fee is $50.00, and each Permit to Purchase a Handgun is $25.00. Some fees are payable at your local Police Department.
  2. Payment & Processing: Pay NJSP fees are paid on their portal and local PD fees are paid directly to your Police Department. Note that some local Police Departments will not start processing your application until they receive the required payment.
  3. References: Include two personal references. Relatives are okay, but it’s smarter to steer clear of spouses or direct blood relatives.
  4. Check the Right Boxes: First-time buyers, tick both the initial FID and Gun Purchase Permit boxes.
  5. Background & Mental Health Checks: Expect a thorough vetting process, including mental health screenings. If you’ve lived out-of-state in the last 10 years, expect some delays.
  6. Submit & Pay: After double-checking everything and sorting out payments, hit that submit button.
  7. Fingerprinting: Schedule your fingerprinting online with IdentoGO within 90 days.
  8. Notification & Delivery: You’ll get your electronic FID and Purchase Permits via email. Print ’em out and keep ’em safe!
  9. Wait Time: The average processing time is 30-45 days but may vary depending on your jurisdiction. Police Departments have 90 days to approve or deny the application, once they have received all the requirements.
  10. Confirm Reception of Information: Ring up your local police a few days post-fingerprinting to make sure they’ve got all they need.

Extra Info: Validity and Extensions

  • Gun Purchase Permits: These ‘golden tickets’ are good for 90 days. They usually get an automatic extension for another 90 days—just once, though.
  • Waiting Period: You can purchase multiple long guns on the same day, but you can only purchase one handgun every 31 days.
  • NICs or Background Checks: They are submitted by the seller the day of the purchase, and are only valid for 30 days, once they are approved.
  • E-Permits: Gun Stores have no way to check if you have a valid Gun Purchase Permit, so it’s a good practice to print or screenshot the e-mail notification that shows the number of active e-permits you have (for handguns only).

Pro Tip: Number of Permits
We recommend applying for at least two Gun Purchase Permits. Why? Each gun sale is final, and warranty issues could require a new permit. But don’t go overboard—applying for more than five permits at once isn’t wise, unless you qualify for an exemption.

Good to know:
When picking up your firearm, you’ll need to present or have the  items valid, and not expired:

    • Valid Driver’s License
    • Valid FID Card
    • Valid Gun Purchase Permit (if purchasing a handgun)
    • Driver’s License and FID Card must have matching information (Name, Address, etc)
    • Valid NICs  or ‘Background Check’ (Is valid for 30 days once approved), the store will submit the NICS check on the day of the purchase.
    • You can add additional long guns to a NICS submitted for a handgun, but you cannot add a Handgun to a NICS submitted for a Long Gun. This means, that if you purchase a handgun, the day you are picking it up, you can add a rifle or shotgun to the same background check approval, and take the firearms home the same day; but if you bought a long gun, you are not allowed to add a handgun to that background check approval, you will need a new background check.

What to do if your permit is being delayed:
Getting antsy because your permit’s taking its sweet time? We get it. Here’s what you can do:

  • Document Everything: Keep tabs on all important dates—when you submitted your application, got fingerprinted, etc.
  • Go Digital: Whenever possible, communicate via email rather than phone calls. This way, you’ve got a paper trail to back you up.
  • Legal Help: If you hit that 90-day mark and you’re still empty-handed, it’s time to call in the cavalry. Reach out to pro-gun rights organizations like NJPRC or NJ2As, or consult an experienced gun attorney firm like Evan Nappen.

And there you have it! Keep your wits about you, stay on top of the process, and don’t hesitate to seek help if things aren’t moving as they should. Stay safe, and shoot straight, NJ!

As always, we recommend that you take proper training before handling a firearm. You can book a class in our website, or just CLICK HERE

And there you have it, NJ! Any questions, give us a shout. Shoot safely, everyone! 🎯

*Legal Details on N.J.S.A. 2C:39-7 (also known as: Certain Persons Not to Have Weapons)
Certain Persons Not to Have Weapons is governed by N.J.S.A. 2C:39-7, which provides that if you have been convicted of certain felonies in New Jersey or any other State, then you are not permitted to purchase, own, or possess a firearm in New Jersey. The crimes that prevent you from having a weapon in New Jersey if convicted include: robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, arson, extortion, homicide, kidnapping, escape, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, endangering the welfare of a child, stalking, and bias intimidation. The statute mandates that if you have been convicted of any of these crimes or similar crimes in another state, then you are not allowed to possess a weapon in NJ. If you do, you could be charged with a certain persons offense. The certain persons law also applies to anyone convicted of domestic violence charges, including disorderly persons offenses. Lastly, if you were institutionalized for a mental illness, you cannot have a weapon without medical authorization and a letter of clearance from a licensed practitioner.

**Disclaimer: This guide is meant for quick reference and should not be considered legal advice. Laws change, and our info might be out-of-date, contain errors, or not cover stricter laws that could apply to you. Always consult legal professionals for advice.