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Missoula County Sheriff - FAQs


Our Most Frequently Asked Questions:

The following information are questions our office receives more frequently. If you have a question that is not addressed here, please contact our office.

When is a concealed weapon permit required?

A permit is necessary only when the weapon is wholly or partially concealed on your person by your clothing or wearing apparel and you are carrying the weapon within the official boundaries of a city or town or the confines of a logging, lumbering, mining or railroad camp. Even with a concealed weapon permit, you may not carry a concealed weapon in buildings owned or leased by the federal, state or local government, any financial institutions, or any place where alcoholic beverage are sold, dispensed and/or consumed.

What are the requirements for obtaining a Concealed Weapon Permit?

  1. You must be a resident of the State of Montana for at least six months (as evidenced by your Montana Driver’s License) and must be at least 18 years of age. A permit cannot be issued to a resident of another state. If born in another country, you will need to provide your naturalization certificate. A photocopy of your certificate will be made at the time you submit your application and the original given back to you.
  2. You must produce proof of an approved handgun firearms training course or your hunter’s safety certification.
  3. You can have no felony convictions or convictions of certain misdemeanors involving violent acts.
  4. You cannot be serving a sentence or be undergoing treatment for substance abuse.

How do I apply for a Concealed Weapon Permit in Missoula County?

Applications are available online at www.co.missoula.mt.us. Click on “departments”, “sheriff’s office” and “forms”. There you will find links to fillable (you can enter information online, then print) or non-fillable form (that requires you to print it out and fill it out manually). You may also pick up an application at the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office on the second floor of the County Courthouse between 8:00 a.m. and noon, and 1:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Completed applications are accepted from 8:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. You must submit your application in person, and you must sign your application in the presence of a designated person in the Sheriff’s Office.

When you submit your application, you will be required to show a current Montana Driver’s license or state issued picture identification card, be fingerprinted, and pay a non-refundable fee of $80.00. Payment may be made by check, cash, credit or debit card. We do not accept American Express.

What qualifies as proof of firearms training?

Montana law recognizes any of the following training resources:

  1. Completion of a hunter’s education or safety course approved or conducted by the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks or a similar agency of another state. You can obtain a copy of your Montana Hunter’s Safety certificate by going to the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks website www.fwp.mt.gov. You may also contact the Missoula FWP office at 406-542-5000 for assistance in obtaining a copy of your Montana hunter’s education certificate.
  2. Completion of a firearms safety or training course from a National Firearms Association, a law enforcement agency, an institution of higher education, or an organization that uses instructors certified by a National Firearms Association.
  3. Completion of a law enforcement firearms safety or training course offered to or required by public or private law enforcement personnel and conducted or approved by a law enforcement agency.
  4. Evidence that the applicant, during military service, was found to be qualified to operate firearms, including handguns. DD214 will show your weapons qualifications and must show handgun qualification to be adequate for your CWP proof of competency. Proof of firearm training cannot be waived for military veterans.
  5. Possession of a license from another state to carry a firearm, concealed or otherwise, that is granted by that state upon completion of a course described in 1 through 4 above.

Can I apply for an out-of-county permit?

Your concealed weapon permit is recognized throughout the state of Montana. However, because the clear intent of the law is to have the Sheriff of the county in which you reside issue your permit, you will have to apply for your permit in the county in which you reside. Missoula County will not process permits for persons living in other counties.

Is my Montana permit valid in another state?

Your permit is valid within the State of Montana. You will need to check the laws of the states you will be visiting before traveling there with your handgun.

If I have a concealed weapons permit from another state, is it valid in Montana?

This information may be obtained through the Montana Department of Justice website at http://www.doj.mt.gove/enforcement/criminal justice/concealed weapons.asp. If you moved here from another state, your permit is not transferable. You must complete the application process for a Montana permit after residing in Montana for six months.

How long does it take to get my permit?

Permits are mailed within sixty days of receipt of your application.

When will my permit expire?

Your permit is good for four years, and the expiration date is clearly displayed on your permit. You may renew up to 30 days prior to the expiration of your permit by completing the renewal form at the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office. Renewals are accepted from 8:00 a.m. to noon and from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. The fee for renewal is $25.00. Failure to renew your permit prior to its expiration will require you to submit a new application and pay the full application fee of $80.00.

What if I move?

If you move outside of Missoula County, you must notify the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office within ten days of moving that you have relocated. You must also notify the Sheriff and Chief of Police in the location of your new address that you hold a concealed weapons permit.

Are there websites where I can find additional information?

To learn more about Montana laws most commonly relevant to concealed carry permits: go to www.mt.gov then click on Title 45, Chapter 8, Part 3 to peruse the codes. Other helpful links include https://doj.mt.gov/enforcement/concealed weapons/ and
https://data.opi.mt.gov/bills/mca/45/8/45-8-321.htm.

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Sheriff's Cadets

Cadets are high school aged students who are interested in Law Enforcement, either as a future career, or as an after school activity.  Cadets receive law enforcement training in general, and learn specifics about the Missoula County Sheriff's Department.