Conceal and Carry - Information and Training Classes

Welcome to Conceal and Carry Headquarters – The leading online resource for information about handgun conceal and carry laws throughout the US with specific state laws and training requirements, a list of resources for where to get the highest quality conceal and carry permit training, articles on proper safety procedures, and interviews with instructors and law enforcement to help you get the information you need to make informed personal decisions about whether conceal and carry is right for you.

Iowa Concealed Carry Laws

Honors IA Permit:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Wisconsin, Wyoming

IA Permit Not Honored:
California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Washington DC

IA Res Permits Only:
Colorado, Florida, Michigan, New Hampshire

IA Honors Permit:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, Washington DC

IA Does Not Honor Permit:

Right Denied


Are concealed carry permits available in the state of Iowa?

Iowa operates as a Shall Issue state that is required to provide a concealed carry permit if an individual passes a background check. However, Iowa will only issue professional CCW licenses that are required by an employer to nonresidents of the state.

In Iowa, a concealed carry permit is required to purchase a handgun, although it is not necessary to purchase a rifle or shotgun. All firearms are not registered with the state. In order to own a rifle, shotgun, or handgun, a license is not necessary. A concealed carry license is not required to carry a rifle or shotgun, although it is required by law to carry a handgun.

Iowa will honor all other CCW licenses from other states, as long as an individual is 21 years of age or older.


Where can I get an Iowa Concealed Carry Permit?

Iowa concealed carry licenses are issued by the local sheriff in the county where you reside. As of 2011, all concealed carry applications must be filed directly through a county sheriff, excluding applications for a Professional Permit for a state employee or for a Nonresident Professional Permit, which must be filed through the Iowa Department of Public Safety.

Once an Iowa concealed carry permit has been issued, it will be valid for a period of five years from the date of issue. In order to submit an application, fingerprints are not required. It is also unlawful for an issuing authority to make you supply additional documents with the application or to place unnecessary restrictions on a permit.

A background check is required in order to apply for an Iowa CCW permit and can qualify as an NICS check that will provide an exemption for a firearm background check at an FFL.

An Iowa concealed carry permit is required to be denied or approved within 30 days from submitting the application.


How do I apply for a license?

In order to apply for an Iowa concealed carry license, you must apply in person at a local county sheriff’s office with a valid picture ID, either an Iowa ID card or an Iowa driver’s license, that reflects your county address.

When applying for an Iowa concealed weapon permit, the following documents are necessary:

  • Application for Permit to Carry Weapons
  • Money order or check for $50
  • Valid identification card that contains your full name, date of birth, sex, residential address, and color photograph
  • Proof of valid firearms safety training

*Valid firearms safety training may be completed through an NRA training course, a public training course offered through a law enforcement agency or public organization, a handgun safety training course for security guards or law enforcement, or small arms training through service in the Armed Forces of the United States. Completed law enforcement agency firearms training certification will also qualify a peace officer to carry a concealed firearm within their normal course of duty.

In order to renew a license, the same process for a new concealed carry permit applies. However, you will check “renewal” on the application form and will only be charged $25, as long as the renewal permit application was received within at least 30 days of the current permit expiration date.


How much does the license cost?

A concealed carry license in Iowa costs a total of $50; a renewal license is $25. In some instances, a plastic laminated permit will cost $5-$10 extra, although a paper permit may be available at no extra charge.


Am I eligible for a Concealed Carry Permit in the state of Iowa?

In order to apply for a professional CCW permit, you must be at least 18 years of age. In order to apply for a nonprofessional permit, you must be at least 21 years of age.

Additionally, you must meet the following requirements for nonprofessional and professional permits:

  • You must not be addicted to alcohol.
  • You must not have probable cause within the past two years of the application date indicating that you are likely to use a weapon unlawfully or to endanger yourself or others.
  • You have not been convicted of an aggravated or serious misdemeanor within the past three years involving an explosive or firearm.
  • You are not prohibited by federal law from transporting, shipping, possessing, or receiving a firearm.


Where can I carry a concealed weapon after receiving a license?

In Iowa, you are not required by law to inform a law enforcement officer that you are carrying a concealed weapon, although you must present your CCW permit upon request.

It is against the law to carry a handgun or loaded firearm within city limits, and it is also prohibited to carry a concealed handgun or firearm on your person or to knowingly transport a handgun in a vehicle in Iowa.

However, if you possess a valid permit, you can carry a concealed handgun on your property, place of business, or land. You can also transport or carry for lawful purposes an unloaded revolver or pistol in a vehicle in a closed container or secure package, as well as a luggage compartment if the weapon is too large to be concealed on your person. The weapon in a luggage compartment must not be readily accessible to any passengers.

The state of Iowa has “weapons free zones”, which indicate an area within 1000 feet of a property, including a public or private elementary or secondary school or public park. It is not prohibited to carry a concealed weapon in any establishments that serve alcohol; however, if it is proven that you have an addiction to alcohol, your permit will be revoked.

It is prohibited to carry a concealed weapon in the following circumstances:

  • While under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • With an alcohol concentration of .08 or more.
  • With any amount of a controlled substance present in a blood or urine test.

Violating the above circumstances will result in a CCW license being revoked.

Iowa does not technically have a Castle Doctrine or stand-your-ground law since the law governing reasonable force provides very little protection for an individual who uses deadly force for self-defense on their property.

Open Carry in Iowa is not restricted by the state, with the exception of carrying inside city limits or in a vehicle.


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