Did You Know: How to Apply for a Concealed Handgun Permit

One of the most frequently asked questions to Stafford County Government is “How do I get a concealed handgun permit.” The answer is by applying, showing proof of residency and firearms training, and paying a fee. It is important to note that Stafford does not facilitate the permits: the state manages the program through the Court System. A permit is acquired by applying in person at the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office for a first-time applicant or via mail or by mail or in-person for renewals.

First-time Applicant Process

The whole process is outlined on Stafford’s website at www.staffordcountyva.gov/concealed.

  1. Official Form - The first step is to print out the SP-248 Concealed Handgun Permit Application and complete it. You may also access a hard copy of the application at the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office in the courthouse.
  2. Official Identification - Next, you must provide a valid form of photo ID issued by a governmental agency of the Commonwealth, by the U.S. Dept. of Defense or U.S. State Dept. (passport) and proof of residency if valid identification does not reflect Stafford County address.
  3. Proof of Firearms Training – You must prove completion of a firearms safety or training class. There are detailed descriptions of what is acceptable on the webpage.
  4. Fee – The fee for the permit is $43, and it may be by cash, check or money order made payable to the Clerk of the Court.

The entire process takes a few weeks, and the permit arrives by mail. It is good for five years. It is essential to renew online before the permit expires.


Both in-person renewal and mail renewal involve downloading the SP-248 form and checking the renewal box. You must provide a copy of your current concealed handgun permit, a copy of your current valid photo identification and proof of residency if your identification does not reflect a Stafford County address.