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CCW: Overview of the Permitting Process

Updated: Aug 20

Obtaining a CCW permit might seem like an arduous process, but it's really fairly straightforward. You can start the application right now on your desktop computer. For your convenience, I've summarized the process below for Solano, Napa, Yolo, and Sacramento Counties. However, you should still read through your particular sheriff's office website for their specific requirements.

You likely spend thousands of dollars on insurance every year to protect your home and car. Why not invest in protecting yourself and your family from a violent encounter?

Step 1: Application

Click the links below to start the application process in your county:

Solano County

Napa County

Yolo County

Sacramento County

On the on-line application website, fill in your identifying information and upload a photo of your California Driver’s License. In addition, upload two documents which prove residency within the county. Acceptable proof of residency must be a MONTHLY bill such as:

  • Utility bill

  • Bank statement

  • Cell phone bill

  • Credit card statement

  • Mortgage statement

In the section which asks for “cause,” simply state that you wish to have a CCW permit for self-protection. List up to 3 handguns you would like to carry. Be sure to write in the correct serial numbers.

Pay a fee by credit card which varies from county-to-county. Expect to pay at least $250 for the application process, background check, and fingerprinting fees. Once you have completed this process, you will be contacted to set up an appointment for an interview.

Step 2: Interview and Fingerprinting

The sheriff's office will conduct a short interview to determine if you are of “good moral character.” If you have a clean past, then there’s little to discuss. The key is to tell the truth about any events that you may have been involved in. They just want to make sure that you aren’t a “loose cannon" before issuing you a permit.

The sheriff's office will set up an appointment to fingerprint you. The fingerprint cards are submitted to the Department of Justice (DOJ) which will run a background check to determine if you have any disqualifying criminal history. This can take a couple of weeks to several months depending on the efficiency of the DOJ.

Step 3: Training

Depending on your county, training can begin right after the interview or after the completion of the DOJ background. Solano County requires you to wait until the background check has been completed before training.

The training for the initial permit includes lectures about self-defense, firearm safety and fundamentals, where you can/can't carry a weapon, etc. You will also have to pass a county-specific live-fire qualification course. With the exception of Sacramento County, the live-fire qualifications are at close range, with reasonable time frames, and a fairly large target.

Solano and Napa County have a list of approved trainers from which you must choose. Yolo and Sacramento don’t have a list, but you must receive training from a California DOJ certified trainer. In addition to the application fees listed above, the cost for training ranges from about $250 for Solano County permit holders and up to $500 for permit holders in Napa, Yolo, and Sacramento Counties. Once you have completed your required training sessions, you will upload your training certificate into the on-line application website.

If you choose Paladin Tactical US for your training needs, visit our site for scheduled classes. To determine which classes you need to fulfill the requirements, see below:

Solano County

Initial application: CCW 1 only

Renewal: CCW 1 (4-hours)

Permit Modification: CCW 1 (qualification period of class)

Napa, Yolo, and Sacramento Counties

Initial application: CCW 1 and CCW 2

Renewal: CCW 1 (4-hours)

Permit Modification: CCW 1 (qualification period of class)

Step 4: Pick up your Permit

Once you've completed the steps, the sheriff’s office will contact you to set up an appointment to pick up your official CCW permit. Congratulations and carry safely!

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