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Concealed Carry Permit

Concealed Pistol License Laws in Michigan

Michigan allows those who are 21 and older to get a concealed pistol license (CPL) as long as they meet certain requirements. For those who do obtain a CPL, there are specific restrictions on the locations where pistols can and cannot be carried while concealed. Understanding concealed carry laws in Michigan is essential for anyone who wants to get or holds a CPL, as well as those accused of violating these laws.

Offering more clarification, the following answers common questions about Michigan concealed carry laws and the penalties for violating them. A Lansing criminal defense attorney at O’Keefe Law can give you more answers and essential advice about a particular case whenever you need it.

Who May Get a Concealed Carry Permit in Michigan?

Michigan is a "shall issue" state for CPLs. Effectively, that means that people 21 and over can obtain a CPL as long as:

  • They are not specifically prohibited from doing so: Felons convicted of certain violent crimes can be banned from obtaining CPLs and possessing pistols. So too can convicted felons who have not yet satisfied their court-ordered penalties.
  • They complete training: Proof of completing firearms safety training must be submitted as part of an application for a CPL.
  • They pass a background check: As required by federal law, this will be a National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) background check.

Michigan CPL Disqualifications

There are specific restrictions on who can obtain a concealed carry license in Michigan, based on criminal history. Specifically, Michigan laws set forth various disqualifications for CPLs, with prior convictions for offenses like the following being bars to obtaining a concealed pistol license in Michigan. This includes:

  • Misdemeanor convictions: Those who have been convicted of misdemeanor assault, misdemeanor sex crimes, and even certain misdemeanor weapons offenses can be barred from obtaining a CPL in Michigan for 8 years. This time frame starts as the date the prior case is fully resolved, meaning all court-ordered penalties for the case have been fully satisfied by the convicted individual.
  • Felony convictions: Although convicted felons may have avenues for restoring their gun rights in Michigan, generally, these individuals will not be allowed to obtain a concealed pistol license in Michigan, even after gun rights have been restored.

Along with prior convictions for these offenses, there are other bars to obtaining a CPL in Michigan. In fact, permanent disqualifications for Michigan CPLs can include (and may not be limited to):

  • Legal incapacitation
  • Involuntary committal to a mental health institution
  • Being under a personal protection order or a bond order that prohibits gun possession
  • A “not guilty by reason of insanity” finding in a prior criminal case

How Do I Apply for Concealed Pistol License in Michigan?

To apply for a concealed pistol license in Michigan, here is what you need to do:

  1. Obtain an application: Michigan CPL applications can be obtained online here, from the Michigan State Police (MSP). They can also be picked up in person from the local county clerk’s office.
  2. Complete the application: Fill out all required information on the application, and do not sign it.
  3. Complete the required training: According to Michigan authorities, this firearm safety training must be “certified by this state or a national or state firearms training organization.” This can include courses certified by the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards (MCOLES) or organizations like the National Rifle Association (NRA). Here is a list of MCOLES-certified courses for firearm safety.
  4. Submit the application to the county clerk: This should be the county clerk’s office in the county in which you live. Here is a directory of county clerk offices throughout Michigan. When you submit this application, you will need to sign it, under oath, in the presence of the county clerk or the clerk’s representative.
  5. Fingerprints will also have to be submitted: Fingerprinting can be done beforehand at a local law enforcement agency. In this case, the receipt for the fingerprinting will need to be submitted with the CPL application. Here is a directory for approved locations for getting fingerprinted for a Michigan CPL application.
  6. Wait 45 days for the decision: By law, decisions regarding CPL applications must be issued within days of an applicant being fingerprinted. If the CPL is not issued, the reasons for the disqualification will be specified in the notice sent to the applicant.

How Much Michigan CPLs Cost?

CPL costs can include the cost of safety training and the application fees. While safety training costs can vary by provider, application fees for a CPL are:

  • $100 for a first-time or new CPL + $15 for fingerprinting
  • $115 for a CPL renewal

Receipts for payment of CPL fees should be retained, especially in the case of renewals, because they can serve as a valid CPL until the new or renewed license is received.

Notably, the costs of CPLs in Michigan have raised some controversy, as Michigan reportedly has the fourth most expensive CPL fees in the nation.

How Long Is My Concealed Pistol License Good For?

According to MPS, “a CPL is valid until the applicant's date of birth that falls not less than four years or more than five years after the license is issued or renewed.” So, depending on the date a CPL has been issued, it may be valid for four to five years thereafter.

Within 6 months before the expiration date, CPLs can be renewed at the county clerk’s office (in the county of residence), along with the required fees.

What Are the Charges & Penalties for Violating the Concealed Carry Law in Michigan?

Carrying a concealed weapon in violation of the law can result in Class E felony charges in Michigan. These charges can come into play in various situations, including when:

  • A non-CPL holder carries a concealed weapon, which can include transporting weapons in a vehicle (if not done in accordance with the law).
  • A CPL holder conceal carries an illegal (“dangerous”) weapon, like knives with blades longer than 3 inches and automatic weapons.

A conviction can be punishable by up to 5 years in prison and/or up to $2,500 in fines.

How Can I Fight Weapons Charges Related to CPL Violations?

The best defense against criminal charges related to CPL violations will depend on the details of a particular case, including specifics like who the defendant is and how the alleged violation was discovered. Generally, some effective strategies for these defense cases can include demonstrating or arguing that:

  • The weapon was being lawfully carried, and the charges are a result of a misunderstanding.
  • The defendant was unaware that (s)he was carrying a concealed weapon.
  • The weapon was discovered during an illegal search and seizure.

For case-specific defense strategy from a trial-tested defense attorney, contact O’Keefe Law today.

An Experienced Lansing Criminal Defense Lawyer Is Here/Ready to Help You: Contact O’Keefe Law

If you or someone you love has been accused of violating concealed carry laws in Michigan, you need experienced defense representation if you’re serious about protecting your rights, freedom, and future. You need Lansing Criminal Defense Lawyer Patrick William O’Keefe.

Call 517-273-0421 or email O’Keefe Law for a free, confidential consultation and important advice about your defense options.

When felony weapons charges are on the line, the reality is that you can only clear your name by winning in court—and the attorney you retain can have a major impact on whether that happens. At O’Keefe Law, we don’t just fight for shorter sentences. We aim for the best possible outcomes, including dismissals and acquittals.

Remember, it is never too early to hire the right defense lawyer, but it could be too late.

The sooner you contact O’Keefe Law, the sooner you can get the defense you need to fight for fair, favorable outcomes. Backed by years of courtroom experience, Attorney Patrick William O’Keefe has the practical knowledge, skills, and resources to effectively stand up to prosecutors, police, and others. He provides the defense representation he would demand in your shoes, and that means you can count on him to prioritize your cases, needs, and objectives.

If you contact just one attorney, you must contact board-certified Attorney Patrick William O’Keefe today. We look forward to hearing from you and helping you with a weapons case or any criminal case. In the meantime, check out some of our previous results and client testimonials to learn more about why we are a 5-star criminal defense law firm in and around Lansing, MI.

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