To apply for a HAWAII firearms permit, you need to head down to your local FIREARMS DEPARTMENT, which is located at your police station. First time applicants must bring a one time fee of $16.50 in form of cashiers check or money order.
*For the LONG GUN/RIFLE PERMIT
-Valid picture ID
*For the HANDGUN/PISTOL PERMIT
-YOU MUST HAVE EITHER A HUNTERS EDUCATION OR AN NRA PISTOL CERTIFICATION COURSE DONE
-YOU MUST PURCHASE THE FIREARM
-Valid picture ID
-Either your HUNTERS EDUCATION CARD or NRA PISTOL COURSE CERTIFICATE
-At time of your purchase, your dealer will give you the necessary information from the firearm which includes:
Make, Model, Factory #, Action type, Barrel length, Caliber, & HC#
***PLEASE KEEP IN MIND THAT YOUR BACKGROUND CHECK & APPLICATION PROCESS MAY TAKE 2-4 WEEKS
*If you are purchasing a firearm from a vendor or seller from out of state, after payment they will need you to email or fax them a copy of a Federal Firearms License (you can go to your local gun shop & they will be happy to assist you with that). Since the firearm cannot be sent directly to you, this is where your purchase will be shipped to for registration into the State of Hawaii. When your firearm arrives, the FFL holder will work to establish a HAWAII REGISTRATION # (which may take 1-3 days). *Check with your FFL holder for transfer fees
When that number is established the firearm is then ready to pick up if :
1) It is a LONG GUN/RIFLE & 2) if you are in possesion of a VALID HAWAII LONG GUN/RIFLE PERMIT.
If it is a HAND GUN/PISTOL that you purchased. After the HAWAII REGISTRATION # is established, the FFL holder will then provide you with information from the firearm which will include:
Make, Model, Factory #, Action type, Barrel length, Caliber, & HC #
Which you take along with your valid picture ID & either your HUNTERS EDUCATION CARD or your NRA PISTOL CERTIFICATE to your FIREARMS DEPARTMENT, where your handgun/pistol PERMIT application begins.
REGISTRATION OF ALL FIREARMS BROUGHT INTO THE STATE
All firearms brought into the State must be registered within 72 hours. Aliens may bring in firearms for 90 days only for bona fide hunting or target shooting. You do not need a permit to bring your own firearms into the State.
PERMITS TO ACQUIRE
Acquiring any firearm within the State requires a permit from your county chief of police. You must be 21 years old and a U.S. citizen. You must be fingerprinted and photographed for a criminal background check and affirm by affidavit your mental health and lack of drug or alcohol addiction or criminal background. You authorize release of your medical history and give the name and address of your doctor (if any). You are not required to find a doctor or provide a medical clearance. Your doctor is required to release any mental health information pertinent to your acquiring firearms. A drunk driving record, history of serious psychiatric diagnosis, or any treatment for alcohol or drug abuse will result in denial of your permit. A letter from a physician will be required to establish that you are “no longer adversely affected”.
If you are denied a permit because you are disqualified to possess, the county police must notify you in writing of the reason for denial. You then have 30 days to transfer all your firearms and ammunition to a dealer or other authorized person or turn them in to the police.
You must wait 14 days for your initial permit, and the police chief may require that you wait 14 days for each subsequent permit, at his discretion. Individual permits to acquire handguns are required for each transaction and must be used with 10 days of issue. A permit to acquire shotguns and rifles is good for one year from the date of issue for any number of transactions. There is no fee for permits except for a one time only fee for an FBI fingerprint check. If you have had a previous check (i.e. had a previous permit for a firearm) you are not required to pay the fee. The current FBI charge is under $16.50, payable in money order or cashiers check only payable to "HAWAII CRIMINAL JUSTICE DATA CENTER"
You must show evidence of safety training to get a permit to acquire a handgun. Military pistol marksmanship courses (medal award), law enforcement courses, a Hawaii Hunter Education Course, or a 6-hour course including 2 hours range time, instruction in Hawaii gun laws, and safe handling and storage, taught by an NRA certified instructor, with the proper affidavit, all meet the criteria.
REGISTRATION OF FIREARMS ACQUIRED IN STATE
Firearms must be registered with the chief of police within five days of acquisition. Firearms firing loose black powder and antique or deactivated firearms need not be registered (but are otherwise defined as firearms and other laws apply). Owners who acquired rifles and shotguns (long guns) in state before July 1, 1994, need not register them. Spouses who otherwise meet requirements for a permit to acquire may jointly register firearms.
Any individual transferring a long gun must notify the chief of police of the county who issued the permit to acquire of the name of the individual acquiring the firearm and the make, model, barrel length, and serial number, within 48 hours of transfer.
PLACE TO KEEP AND CARRY
Concealed carry and open carry are felonies without a permit to do so from the chief of police of your county. Although allowed by law in special circumstances of threat to self or property, the chiefs’ policy at present is to grant only to law enforcement and those military and security guards whose duties specifically require such. Private citizens are denied.
You may keep firearms and ammunition in your home, office, or place of sojourn (where you lodge or sleep). You may transport directly between these and a firing range, gun class, meeting or show, the police station, hunting, a gunsmith, and a firearms dealer. Guns must be transported unloaded, in rigid lockable receptacles or commercial gun containers that completely enclose the firearm (a commercially produced gun sock meets the criteria). Unloaded means no ammunition in the chamber, cylinder, or magazine, if inserted in the firearm. Vehicles carrying loaded guns are subject to seizure and forfeit.
Note that in the firearms statutes, the word “firearm” is often followed by the words “and ammunition”. Thus, ammunition, even in the absence of a firearm, is subject to the same restrictions as firearms in terms of transport and places to keep and carry.
If a minor under 16 years of age is likely to gain access to your firearm, without parental permission, except as provided by law when at a range or hunting, you may be guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by fine and jail (unless obtained by break-in, etc.).
The owner of a firearm is “absolutely” liable for personal injury or property damage caused by the discharge of he firearm unless the firearm was stolen and reasonably reported stolen, or unless the discharge of the firearm was legally justified. A firearm must be locked up or otherwise reasonably secured unless carried on the person or in such close proximity that the person readily can retrieve and use it as if it were carried on the person.
Rifles and shotguns may be loaned for a maximum of 15 days to persons lawfully able to possess. Another authorized person at a target range may use any firearm when the owner is present. Handguns otherwise may not be loaned.
Minors 16 years old or older may possess long guns while hunting if licensed to hunt, and minors age 12-16 may do so when accompanied by an adult. Hunting with a handgun is permitted subject to hunting rules developed by the Department of Land and Natural Resources. The chief of police may issue a permit to aliens eighteen or over for up to 60 days after the alien has obtained a hunting license. A hunter education course is required to obtain a Hawaii hunting license.
If you are subject to a restraining order (TRO) situation brought by someone who says you have firearms and they are afraid you may threaten with or use them, you must turn in all your firearms and ammunition to the county police for the duration of that order. The police officer serving the order may take any firearms or ammunition in sight, may search for them if invited, and must otherwise get a search warrant. Any police officer who has reasonable grounds to believe that a person has recently assaulted or threatened to assault a family or household member may seize without warrant any firearms or ammunition used or threatened to be used. In some instances (no TRO issued, lawful possession, no criminal charges pending, not held as evidence), owners of seized firearms may reclaim them with 7 working days. Individuals under restraining orders may transfer their firearms to licensed firearms dealers.
Convicted felons, indicted persons, and those convicted of violent misdemeanors, including family abuse, by family court may not possess firearms or ammunition. Only a special Governor’s pardon can restore gun rights.
Full auto (machine gun) firearms are not permitted in Hawaii except for military and law enforcement.
“Assault pistols”, defined by several characteristics, essentially large semi-auto pistols of cosmetic paramilitary appearance, usually accepting detachable magazines of over 10 rounds capacity, are banned, except those registered before July 1992 (grand- fathered, may not be transferred). These include semi auto versions of UZI, Tech-9, etc., and certain large target pistols. A non-inclusive list is available from the
State Attorney General and county police chiefs,
Hawaii state law prohibits greater than 10 round detachable pistol magazines (including rifle magazines capable of use in any pistol, such as the AR-15/M16, M1 carbine, H&K carbine, Thompson, and aftermarket Ruger .22 magazines) unless blocked to hold 10 rounds or less and “not readily restorable”. Possession of illegal magazines is a misdemeanor, and possession of a handgun with even an empty one inserted is a class C felony.
The federal 1994 “assault rifle” ban is now sunset and void, at least for a while longer.
Fully automatic and selective fire weapons (machine guns) are illegal under Hawaii law (since statehood), as are stun guns, cannon, silencers, hand grenades, explosives, bombs, Teflon coated ammunition, explosive or segmenting ammunition, handguns made of zinc allowing melting at less than 800 degrees F (the legal definition of “Saturday night special”), shotguns with barrels less than 18 inches and rifles with barrels less that 16 inches.