Wisconsin Concealed Carry 101

Do you want to carry a gun in Wisconsin? You need to adhere to the law to ensure that you’re not concealed carrying illegally. Wisconsin concealed carry is strict, so you must know and understand the law before going out with a weapon.

Wisconsin Carry Permits and Age Requirements

You’ll need to be 21 years of age before applying for a concealed carry permit in Wisconsin. The state follows the Shall Issue criteria. What this means is that in Wisconsin, all concealed weapons are issued only to the residents in the state.

Non-residents will not be able to be issued a concealed weapon license.

These laws went into effect on November 1, 2011 after the new law passed through legislature on July 8, 2011.

If you want to apply for a concealed weapon license, you’ll need to through the state’s Department of Justice.

You’ll have to pay $40 and pass through the approved training before an application is accepted. All applications are processed under Wisconsin State Statute requiring processing to be 21 days.

Background Checks and Security Measures

Wisconsin will conduct a background check on all applicants. You’ll be responsible for paying for the background check, but the cost of the background check will be factored into your application for licensing.

You’ll only need to spend $40 to become licensed, so it’s a small price to pay.

Purchasing a firearm in the state still requires you to undergo the National Instant Criminal System check. This check is done on a federal level by the FBI. Cashiers will be able to run a person’s information through the database and find out if they’re eligible to buy firearms.

The NICS has been in use since 1998, and there have been over 230 million checks performed since then. What’s good about the NICS is that it’s prevented 1.3 million people from purchasing firearms. The system is used in over 30 states.

If you want to conceal carry, you’ll need to pass through both of these security measures.

Wisconsin CCW License Renewal Information

When you apply for your original license, you’ll only have the license for a duration of five years. Afterwards, you’ll need to renew your license, which is less expensive. Wisconsin CCW laws require you to pay $22 (as of 2017) with no need for:

  • New training
  • Additional training

And you can expect the Department of Justice to send out your renewal notice 120 days, or four months, in advance of your license expiring.

Training Requirements

All licensees will be required to meet certain training standards. The standards require you to provide proof of one of the following forms of training:

  1. Hunter Education. A certificate that shows completion of the Hunter Education program. This program, or one of similar nature in a different state, will suffice. You’ll need to bring a copy of your certificate as proof that you have become certified.
  2. CCW License. If you have a CCW license in another state, you will be able to use this as a form of training proof. The license needs to be current or expired. In the event that the license was revoked, you’ll need to find another way to meet the training requirements set by the state.
  3. Small Arms Training. Anyone who has received training in the U.S. Armed Forces, National Reserve or Reserves for small fire arms training can submit their DD-214 or DD-256 forms to show that they have completed training. If you’ve been honorably discharged, you can still choose this option.
  4. Wisconsin Law Enforcement Standards Board. The Wisconsin Law Enforcement Standards Board provides a certification letter to all persons that have completed training and served as a police officer.
  5. Private Security Training. If you’ve received private security training under the Department of Safety and Professional Services, you’ll be able to use this training to meet the requirements. The private training must include Firearms Certification of Proficiency for it to be valid.
  6. National or State Firearms Safety or Training. If you’ve completed a training course on the national or state level for firearms safety or training, you may be able to use this training course to satisfy the training requirements.

Training is an essential part of your application. If you have not completed a training course, you’ll need to complete the training requirements before applying for concealed carry.

Wisconsin Reciprocity

Wisconsin CCW laws follow reciprocity. What does this mean? If you’ve ever noticed that a person with a handicap placard from another state can use their placard in your state, this is due to reciprocity laws.

These laws, in Wisconsin, recognize out-of-state licenses.

States must be included on the Department of Justices’ list for the license to be accepted. The legislation falls under 165-25 (16). The individual must be at least 21 years of age. Permits from the following states are not recognized in Wisconsin:

  • Delaware
  • DC
  • Florida
  • Guam
  • New Hampshire
  • Maine
  • Oregon
  • New jersey
  • Vermont
  • Rhode Island

There are restrictions for the following states:

  • Virginia
  • South Dakota
  • West Virginia
  • Nevada
  • Ohio
  • Missouri
  • Alaska
  • Massachusetts

While Wisconsin does have relaxed reciprocity laws, this does not mean that every state will accept Wisconsin concealed carry laws. It is up to each individual state to accept or decline a concealed carry from another state. You’ll need to research the state you plan to visit to determine if you can conceal carry with your Wisconsin license or permit.

Changing Your Name or Address

Wisconsin does allow you to change the name or address on your concealed carry license, but this will need to be done within 30 days of changing your address. You must notify the Department of Justice of your address change.

Your request for a new license with the updated information must be accompanied by a $12 check or money order.

Reporting Lost, Stolen or Damaged Concealed Weapon Licenses

If your license becomes damaged, lost or stolen, you do have options. You can submit a request using the Replacement License form. This form, once submitted, will be processed within a period of 14 days after the form and payment has been received.

You’ll need to make a $12 payment, via check or money order, payable to the Wisconsin Department of Justice.

License Suspension or Revocation

There are circumstances in which you may have your license suspended or revoked. One of the main circumstances where this can occur is if you’ve been arrested or convicted of a crime. In this case, you’ll be automatically reported to the Department of Justice by the Clerk of Court.

The Department of Justice will send out a notice to the license holder within a period of one day.

You, the license holder, will be required to bring the license to the department in person or send the license through certified mail. You have seven days to deliver your license back to the department.

If you intentionally fail to deliver the license, you’ll face potential imprisonment up to 30 days and a $500 fine.

You will have a right to appeal the decision.

Concealed carry laws in Wisconsin make it illegal for you to consume alcohol of any nature and carry a concealed weapon at the same time. There are also places where you’re not allowed to conceal carry, such as a prison, jail, courthouse, airport, school grounds and several other locations.