New Licence Applications

Licence Renewal (Subsequent Licence)

Genuine Reasons and Firearm Categories

Lost / Stolen / Expired / Cancel

Compliance

New Licence Applications

How do I apply for a personal firearms licence?

You can request firearms licence application forms by completing the on-line Request for Firearms Licence Application Form. Pre-printed firearms licence application forms will be sent to you by mail which you complete and return to the Firearms Registry for processing, along with any supporting documents. If you have not previously held a NSW firearms licence or do not hold a current interstate firearms licence, you will need to complete a firearms safety training course.

What is the minimum age to apply for a firearms licence?

To be eligible to apply for a NSW firearms licence you must be 18 years of age or over. You can request firearms licence application forms by completing the on-line Request for Firearms Licence Application Form.

If you are aged between 12 and 18 years you can apply for a Minors Permit which will allow you to use firearms under supervision to receive instruction in the safe use of firearms or compete in approved shooting events. You will find additional information about Minors Permits on the Firearms Permits page.

Who do I contact about participating in Firearms Safety Training?

To arrange to undertake Firearms Safety Training (longarms) please contact your local longarm or pistol Shooting Club or one of the organisations listed below who will provide you with details of an accredited trainer located near you –

Firearms Safety Training Council – Phone 02 9486 3077 or email training@firearmtraining.com.au

SSAA Training – Phone 02 8889 0400 or email admin@nsw.ssaa.org.au

Department of Primary Industries, Game Licensing Unit – Phone 02 6391 3750 or email game.licensing@dpi.nsw.gov.au

How long will it take to process my application and issue my firearms licence?

Once your licence application forms are received in our office a mandatory 28 day period applies before your firearms licence can be issued. We recommend you allow a minimum of 35 days, allowing 7 days for postage and handling plus the mandatory 28 day waiting period.

Following receipt of your new licence application forms we will mail a confirmation letter to you containing your allocated firearms licence number and instructions on how to track the progress of your application on-line using the Register of Firearms Licences and Permits to Acquire.

What can delay a licence application?

Your firearms licence application can be delayed if -

  • you do not send all requested supporting information and/or documents with your licence application such as the Genuine Reason Form
  • you do not check all pre-printed information and spelling on your application forms.
  • you fail to supply your NSW drivers licence number (if held).
  • the name and date of birth used for your firearms licence application varies from that on your drivers licence.

NOTE: You are required to use your full legal name and date of birth for your firearms licence application. If these details vary from the name and date of birth on your drivers licence, your photographic licence cannot be produced until the records of Service NSW/Roads & Maritime Services (RMS) and Firearms Registry match. If there is a discrepancy, you will be asked to provide proof of your full legal name and date of birth and the discrepancy will need to be corrected before your firearms licence can be produced.

What happens if I do not provide all the required information to support my licence application?

The Firearms Registry will contact you to request you supply further information to support your licence application. If this information is not provided, it will be considered that you no longer wish to proceed with your application and your application will be lapsed or refused if it is a renewal.

What personal history checks are conducted?

Mandatory police checks are conducted on all applicants to ensure that legislative provisions are being met, including provisions with respect to public safety. Certain criminal history may prevent a person from obtaining a firearms licence in NSW and a licence cannot be issued if a person:

  • Is subject to an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) or an Interim Apprehended Violence Order or for a period of 10 years from the expiry of the AVO (unless the AVO has been revoked)
  • Is subject to a Good Behaviour Bond for a prescribed offence
  • Is subject to a Firearms or Weapons Prohibition Order
  • Is a registrable person or corresponding registrable person under the Child Protection (Offenders Registration) Act 2000
  • Has been convicted within the last 10 years of an offence prescribed by the regulations.

A prescribed offence is a conviction for offences involving firearms or weapons, prohibited drugs/plants, violence, public order, assaults against law enforcement officers, offences of a sexual nature or involving fraud, dishonesty, stealing, robbery, organised criminal groups and recruitment, riot, affray or offences relating to terrorism – refer to Clause 5 of the Firearms Regulation 2017 and the information provided under Suspension Refusal and Revocation FAQs.

Restrictions on the issue of a firearms licence

General restrictions on the issue of a firearms licence state that a licence must not be issued unless the applicant is a fit and proper person and can be trusted to have possession of firearms without danger to public safety and, if a person has never held a licence, has completed a firearms training and safety course to the satisfaction of the Commissioner.

If an applicant answers 'Yes' to any of the questions in Section B – Personal History on a P650 Declaration-Person shooting on an Approved Range or undertaking Firearms Safety Training or a P561 Application for a Personal Firearms Licence, the applicant will not be permitted to undertake firearms safety training or proceed with a licence application until comprehensive personal history checks have been conducted and/or a medical assessment report has been provided to the Firearms Registry by the applicant's treating general practitioner or specialist.

What is a Photograph Advice?

A Photograph Advice is official notification from the Firearms Registry for you to attend a Service NSW/Roads & Maritime Services (RMS) office for the issue of your photo firearms licence card.

You must attend a Service NSW/RMS office prior to the expiry date printed on the Photograph Advice and take –

  • The Photograph Advice
  • Proof of identity documents
  • Payment for the fee shown on the advice

Licence Renewal (Subsequent Licence)

How do I renew my firearms licence?

Licence reapplication forms will be mailed to you 90 days prior to the expiry of your current firearms licence. You must complete the reapplication forms and return them to the Firearms Registry prior to the expiry of your current firearms licence.

Provided your reapplication is received prior to the expiry of your current licence and no changes are made to the categories of licence held, there is no mandatory waiting period for the issue of your licence and you will have continuing authority to possess and use firearms.

How long will it take to process my licence renewal?

If your application is a licence RE-APPLICATION, and if it was received prior to the expiry of your current firearms licence AND there is no change to the categories of licence held, then there is no mandatory waiting period for the issue of your licence. If you have lodged your re-application prior to the expiry date of your current licence, the authority of your existing licence to possess and use firearms continues until you are notified of the issue or refusal of your firearms licence.

What if I re-apply for my firearms licence and my old licence expires before my new licence is issued?

Clause 19 of the Firearms Regulation 2017 provides for the authority of your licence to continue until notification of the issue or refusal of your subsequent licence. This means that, as long as your re-application is received prior to the expiry of your current licence, you can continue to possess and use firearms while you are waiting for notification that your licence has been approved for issue.

PLEASE NOTE: It is important that your re-application (for a subsequent licence) is received at the Firearms Registry prior to the expiry of your current licence. If your re-application is received after the expiry of your current licence, you have no continuing authority to possess and use firearms. In this case your firearms must be surrendered to Police until the issue of your new licence.

Genuine Reasons and Firearm Categories

What happens if my reason for having a firearm licence changes?

If the genuine reasons for your having a firearms licence changes, you must inform the Firearms Registry, in writing or in such other manner as may be approved, within 14 days. If you can no longer support your genuine reason for a firearms licence, you may not be able to retain your firearms licence.

For example, if you hold a firearms licence for the genuine reason of target shooting and you cease your club membership, you can no longer support your genuine reason (unless you advise the Firearms Registry of a new club membership).

Can I have more than one genuine reason on my licence?

Yes, if you can provide the information and/or documents to support each genuine reason you wish to apply for – FACT Sheets are available for each genuine reason and give details of the requirements you must meet and the supporting documents which must accompany your application. Refer to the Licence page for these FACT Sheets.

What information is required to support my genuine reason?

Each genuine reason for a firearms licence has specific requirements which must be met. FACT Sheets are available for each genuine reason and give details of the requirements you must meet and the supporting documents which must accompany your application. Refer to the Licence page for these FACT Sheets.

Can I add a genuine reason or firearm category to my licence?

Yes, you can apply to have a genuine reason or firearm category added to your existing firearms licence. Please use the 'Request for Firearms Licence Application Forms' online form and select either Add a New Genuine Reason or Add a New Category.

You can expect to receive pre-printed application forms by mail within 10 days. Please complete the application forms and return them to the Firearms Registry with any supporting documents for processing.

The fee to add a genuine reason to your firearms licence is $75, except for the addition of Firearms Collection which is $40. The fee to add a firearm category to your existing firearms licence is $40 for category A,B,C,D,G and $100 for category H.

Adding a genuine reason or firearm category to your licence requires a replacement photo licence card being produced.

Can I remove a genuine reason or firearm category from my licence?

Yes, you can apply to have a genuine reason or firearm category removed from your licence by completing the Delete a Category or Genuine Reason or Cancel a Firearms Licence online form.

The fee to have a genuine reason or firearm category removed from your firearms licence is $75.

Removing a genuine reason or firearm category from your licence requires a replacement photo licence card being produced.

NOTE: The replacement licence card will retain the same expiry date as your current licence.

I currently hold a firearms licence for sport/target shooting. Can I go hunting on rural property?

No, you are only authorised to shoot at an approved Sport/Target Shooting Club. If you wish to shoot on rural land you must apply to have the genuine reason of Recreational Hunting and Vermin Control or Primary Production added to your existing firearms licence.

To add this genuine reason, please use the 'Request for Firearms Licence Application Forms' online form and select 'Add a New Genuine Reason'. You can expect to receive the pre-printed application forms within 10 days which you should complete and return to the Firearms Registry with any supporting documents for processing.

Please also refer to the information under 'Can I add a new genuine reason or firearm category to my licence?'.

My licence is issued for primary production. Can I shoot on property other than my own?

A licence issued for the genuine reason of Primary Production authorises you to use firearms category A and B firearms on your own primary production property. Category C firearms can be used on your own land and on land used for primary production that immediately adjoins your own land. Prior written permission from the owner/occupier of the adjoining land must be obtained before using category C firearms on that land.

In all other circumstances, if you wish to shoot on property other than your own, you must add the genuine reason of Recreational Hunting and Vermin Control to your licence.

Can I apply for a firearms licence for personal protection?

No. Personal protection is not listed as a genuine reason for a firearms licence. Please refer to Section 12(2) of the Firearms Act 1996 which specifically states that personal protection and protection of any other person do not constitute a genuine reason for possessing and/or using a firearm.

Can I apply for a full Category H licence?

If you have previously held a full Category H Sport/Target Shooting licence you may apply for a Category H licence.

If you have never held a Category H Sport/Target Shooting licence, you will be issued with a Probationary Pistol Licence (PPL) for one year prior to being issued with a Category H firearms licence.

What is the term of a Probationary Pistol Licence (PPL) and what restrictions apply?

A Probationary Pistol Licence (PPL) is issued for a period of one year.

For the first 6 months of the term of the PPL you cannot possess or use a pistol unless:

  1. You are on the pistol shooting club premises, and
  2. You are under the supervision of a person who holds a full category H Sport/Target Shooting Firearms Licence and the level of supervision meets the requirements of clause 156 of the Firearms Regulation 2017.

For the second 6 months of the PPL you can only be issued with two Permits to Acquire a Handgun and these will only be issued if you have successfully completed the 'Pistol Safety Training Course'.

What happens at the end of my one year PPL?

Licence application forms for a full Category H firearms licence will be mailed to you prior to the expiry of your PPL. You must complete the application forms and return them to the Firearms Registry prior to the expiry of your PPL. Applications received prior to the expiry of a PPL provide continuing authority to possess and use firearms on your PPL until your full category H firearms licence is issued.

Lost / Stolen / Expired / Cancel

What if my firearms licence is lost or stolen?

Within NSW - If your licence is lost or stolen within NSW, you must notify NSW Police within 14 days by phoning the Police Assistance Line (PAL) on 131 444..The PAL operator will provide you with an Event number.

You then contact the Firearms Registry by emailing firearmsenq@police.nsw.gov.au, quoting the Event number and requesting a replacement firearms licence card.

A Photograph Advice Letter will be produced and mailed to you which you take to a Service NSW/Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) office for the issue of your replacement photo licence card.

The fee for a replacement licence card is $75 (unless you are exempt as a pensioner or primary producer) and is payable at the Service NSW/RMS office when the photo for your replacement licence is taken.

Outside NSW - If your licence is lost or stolen outside NSW, please contact the Firearms Registry by emailing firearmsenq@police.nsw.gov.au to request a replacement firearms licence card and provide the following details:

  • Firearms Licence Number
  • Personal Details - name, address and date of birth
  • Details of the Loss or Theft - date, time, location and any other relevant details.

A Photograph Advice Letter will be produced and mailed to you which you take to a Service NSW/Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) office for the issue of your replacement photo licence card.

The fee for a replacement licence card is $75 (unless you are exempt as a pensioner or primary producer) and is payable at the Service NSW/RMS office when the photo for your replacement licence is taken.

What if my firearms licence is damaged, destroyed or mutilated?

If your licence card has been defaced, damaged, destroyed or mutilated, please contact the Firearms Registry by emailing firearmsenq@police.nsw.gov.au to request a replacement firearms licence card and provide:

  • Firearms Licence Number
  • Personal Details - name, address and date of birth

An image showing the damage to your licence card must be attached to your email.

A Photograph Advice Letter will be produced and mailed to you which you take to a Service NSW/Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) office for the issue of your replacement photo licence card.

The fee for a replacement licence card is $75 (unless you are exempt as a pensioner or primary producer) and is payable at the Service NSW/RMS office when the photo for your replacement licence is taken.

How do I cancel my firearms licence?

If you no longer require a firearms licence you can notify the Firearms Registry by completing the 'Delete a Category or Genuine Reason or Cancel a Firearms Licence' online form.

If you have firearms registered in your name, you must dispose of your firearms before cancellation of your firearms licence can occur. The disposal of firearms must be through a licensed Firearms Dealer and you must forward the completed Notice of Disposal (on the reverse of the Firearms Registration Certificate) to the Firearms Registry within 7 days of the disposal transaction.

What if my Photograph Advice Letter has expired?

When your firearms licence is approved for issue by the Firearms Registry, you will receive notification to attend a Service NSW/Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) office for production of your photo firearms licence card. You must attend the Service NSW/RMS office before the expiry date of this notification or your Photograph Advice will not be accepted.

If you have a legitimate reason for being unable to attend Service NSW/RMS for the issue of your photo licence card, you must contact the Firearms Registry by phone or email prior to the expiry of the Photograph Advice for consideration of an extension of the time allowed for you to attend the Service NSW/RMS office.

Once your Photograph Advice has expired, it is considered that you no longer wish to hold a firearms licence and the following will occur:

  • A new application for a firearms licence will be lapsed.
  • A re-application for a subsequent firearms licence will be deemed surrendered (Clause 19 of the Firearms Regulation 2017) upon expiry of the photograph advice and you will no longer be authorised to possess and use firearms. In this case, you will be required to surrender your firearms to Police. You will need to lodge a new licence application including genuine reason forms and supporting documents and your licence application will be subject to the mandatory 28 day waiting period specified in Section 11(2) of the Firearms Act 1996.

Compliance

Can a suspended Firearms Licence Holder attend a club or range?

A person whose licence is suspended is not permitted to possess or use firearms or ammunition.

Such a person would be permitted to attend a firearm competition as a spectator where restrictions regarding access to firearms and ammunition could be met and the club has given permission. A suspended licence holder could also judge or be an official at a firearm competition provided the restriction regarding access to firearms and ammunition could be met. Allowing a suspended licence holder to attend a firearms club function such as a bar-b-que would be at the club's discretion.

What if I can't meet the club attendance requirements?

Firearms licence holders using club membership to support the genuine reason for that licence must comply with the prescribed number of shooting activities as outlined in Part 10 of the Firearms Regulation 2017. Please also refer to the Participation Requirements for Club Members FACT Sheet for further details.

It is the individual club member's responsibility to:

  • Notify the Firearms Registry of their principal club for each discipline, AND
  • Notify their principal club of club activities and shoots conducted at clubs other than the principal club.

If you have not complied with the minimum number of shooting activities your club will report your non-attendance to the Firearms Registry and you will be asked to explain why you failed to meet the minimum shooting requirements.

Non-compliance with attendance requirements is a reason for which your firearms licence may be revoked however, if the licence holder can prove that compliance was not reasonably practical, an exemption may be approved. This will be determined on a case by case basis. Note, there are no provisions in the Firearms Regulation 2017 to pre-approve exemptions to the minimum attendance requirements.