Firearms Application Process & Requirements
Firearms Application Process & Requirements
THIS PAGE HAS BEEN UPDATED TO INCLUDE THE RECENT IMPLEMENTATION OF ELECTRONIC FIREARMS PURCHASER IDENTIFICATION CARDS (E-FID), ELECTRONIC PERMITS TO PURCHASE HANDGUNS (E-PERMITS), AND OTHER CHANGES TO THE FIREARMS APPLICATION PROCESS. IT INCLUDES ALL UPDATES UP TO APRIL 1, 2021. BOTH NEW AND PREVIOUS APPLICANTS SHOULD READ ALL THE BELOW INFORMATION TO AVOID DELAYING THE APPROVAL OF THEIR APPLICATION.
Please be advised, the Firearms Applications Unit of the West Orange Police is experiencing extremely high volume during the Covid-19 pandemic. Applications are being processed as they are received however significant delays are being experienced.
All firearms applications for residents of West Orange are handled through the Bureau of Police Records Bureau. In order to obtain a firearm, you must meet eligibility requirements and comply with the statutes which govern firearms purchases in the state of New Jersey.
Additional firearms information is available at the NJ State Police website.
UPDATE ON APPLICATION PROCESS
The New Jersey State Police have made major changes to the Firearms Application and Registration System (FARS) effective with applications filed after October 1, 2020.
The main change that directly affects applicants is that both Firearms Purchaser Identification Cards and Permits to Purchase Handguns are issued electronically to applicants.
The previous printed ID Cards and Permits to Purchase Handguns have been phased out for all applications approved after April 1, 2021. (Applications submitted prior to October 1,2020 will still receive printed Permits to Purchase). The Record Bureau is no longer printing up these documents for applicants, and applicants will not be required to come to Police Headquarters to pick up either Firearms ID Cards or Permits to Purchase Handguns.
Applicants will now receive an Electronic Firearms Purchaser Identification Card (E-FID) and/or an Electronic Permit to Purchase a Handgun (E-PERMIT).
The previously issued yellow Firearms Purchaser Identification Cards are still valid and are still accepted at all NJ Licensed Firearms Dealers and do not have to be replaced.
ELECTRONIC FIREARMS PURCHASER IDENTIFICATION CARD (E-FID):
Applicants that apply for an Initial Card, a Replacement Card (Lost, Stolen, Mutilated), Change of Address, Change of Name, or Change of Sex will receive an email from NJ Firearms System-NJ Portal (NJ State Police) advising that your application was approved. In the email will be a link to download the E-FID and an Access Key that allows you to download the E-FID Card. The Electronic Firearms Purchaser Identification Card will be available to download for one year from date of issue. Please ensure that you print and save a copy for your records. If you do not download the E-FID card within the year you will need to apply for a replacement ID Card which will result in additional application fees on the FARS Site and an additional background investigation by the West Orange Police as required by NJ State Law.
ELECTRONIC PERMIT TO PURCHASE A HANDGUN (E-PERMIT):
When an application is approved, the applicant will receive an email from NJ Firearms System-NJ Portal (NJ State Police) advising of the approval of the Permits to Purchase Handguns. The email will not contain the actual E-PERMIT. It just advises the applicant that the E-PERMIT has been approved. The actual E-PERMIT is contained on the NJ State Police FARS Site and can be activated by any NJ Licensed Firearms Dealer at time of purchase. E-PERMITS have the same expiration period as the former paper permits (90 days from date of approval, with a renewal period of an additional 90 days). Once 180 days have passed since the E-PERMIT was issued, the E-PERMIT is no longer valid and cannot be renewed.
Firearms Application Process and Requirements
The process begins with making application for a Firearms Purchaser Identification Card and along the way, requires you to submit to a background investigation by both state and federal agencies, supply references, be fingerprinted, and consent to a mental health records check.
Applicants should anticipate the process taking approximately thirty days from the date of receipt of the application. Incomplete or missing information may delay the process, as will the failure of your references to respond in a timely manner. (See Special Note listed above regarding delays in processing due to high volume and the ongoing covid-19 pandemic)
Firearms Application Registration System (FARS)
Application Procedures for Applicants
Step 1: Visit the FARS website
Step 2: You will also need the West Orange ORI number, NJ0072200. You WILL NOT be able to complete the FARS online application without same.
NOTE: Please ensure you are a resident of West Orange before submitting with this ORI. Incorrect entries will require you to re-apply and all fees are non-refundable.
Step 3: Complete the online application. You may complete the application using a smartphone, mobile device, laptop or desktop computer. When completing the application, you will need the e-mail addresses of two reputable references. Please fully proofread the entered information at the "Review Screen" portion of your application. Please also print out the confirmation pages after your application is electronically submitted. You will receive automated e-mail updates throughout this new process through FARS.
Step 4: DO NOT SHOW UP if you receive an e-mail advising that your application is approved. Our records department will contact you via email when complete. The fee for the INITIAL FID card is $5.00, and the fee for each handgun purchase permit is an additional $2.00 (cash or check made out to the Township of West Orange).
*Please advise your references that the FARS system will e-mail them the reference questions to be answered. Your references can complete the questions using a smartphone, mobile device, laptop or desktop computer. Please advise them to complete the questions immediately to progress your background investigation.
*The online application is applicant driven. Please ensure that you have entered the best phone numbers and e-mail addresses for yourself and your references. Although your Social Security number is not mandatory, the application process will be delayed without it.
*If you have resided outside of NJ in the past 10 years, you must complete Form 66, Consent for Mental Health Records Search.
If you need guidance with the application process or have questions, please contact Sgt. George Lopez at Glopez@wopd.org
If you need guidance with the online F.A.R.S. system, contact the New Jersey e-Government
Services Help Desk Phone: 609-586-2600.