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How To Get a CA Firearm Safety Certificate

Firearm Safety Certificate

Effective January 1, 2015, the Handgun Safety Certificate program was replaced with the Firearm Safety Certificate (FSC) program. Under the FSC program, requirements that previously applied to handguns only now apply to all firearms (handguns and long guns), unless exempt. A list of exemptions is listed below.

A valid California Handgun Safety Certificate can still be used to purchase/acquire handguns only until it expires. For long gun purchases/acquisitions made January 1, 2015, and thereafter, a Firearm Safety Certificate is required. Once an FSC is obtained, it is valid for both handgun and long gun purchases/acquisitions.

Testing Requirements

The State of California requires that all firearm purchasers have a California Firearm Safety Certificate. A Firearm Safety Certificate is acquired by taking and passing a written test, generally at participating firearms dealers and private firearms training facilities.

The test covers firearm safety and the basic firearms laws and requires a 75% score on a 30 question exam. To help individuals prepare for the test, a Firearm Safety Certificate Study Guide is available. A Spanish version is also available, as is a webinar for viewing or downloading: Webinar.

Applicants must be at least 18 years of age and must present clear evidence of identity and age by presenting a California Driver’s License or California Department of Motor Vehicles Identification Card.

The firearm safety demonstration protocols and DOJ Certified Instructor standards have been established and implemented by DOJ. An explanation of the firearm safety demonstration can be found starting on page 12 of the Firearm Safety Certificate Study Guide.

How To Take The FSC Test

Inland Training offers the ability to take the California Firearm Safety Certificate Test at the end of the Basic Handgun Class.

Firearm Safety Certificate Cost

The cost of taking the CA FSC test is $25.00 in addition to the class. (Please note that the test is administered by Bass Pro Shops, not Inland Training.)

This Fee is a mandated fee set by the State of CA and is the same everywhere you would go to take the test.

After taking one of our classes we have yet to have an individual not pass the test on the first attempt or even receive lower than a 90% grade on the test.

Once you have passed the CA FSC test you receive the Certification Card that is good for 5 years to purchase a firearm in California 

When you are prepared to take the California Firearm Safety Certificate Test you may go to any Firearms Dealer and take the test at their location.  

Remember the CA FSC Test or Study booklet DOES NOT PROVIDE YOU ANY INFORMATION ON HOW TO SHOOT!

Firearms Training

The next step is to take the Basic Handgun Class. This class is an excellent next step in enhancing your knowledge and skills in shooting and firearms safety. 

Below is some helpful information for you to obtain your Firearm Safety Certificate.  In order to obtain your (FSC) contact us for additional information or to schedule getting your FSC testing requirements completed.

Additional Information:

A copy of the California Firearms Laws (2016) in .pdf

A copy of the NRA Synopsis of State Firearm Laws for California.

Firearms Safety Certificate Requirement Exemptions:

There are several FSC requirement exemptions. In addition to the previous Handgun Safety Certificate (HSC) exemptions, a person issued a valid hunting license is exempt from the FSC requirement for long guns only. (Pen. Code, § 31700, subd. (c).)

Exemptions:

    X01 = Special Weapons Permit Holder
    X02 = Operation of Law Representative
    X03 = Handgun being returned to the owner
    X13 = FFL collector with COE (curio and relic firearms only)
    X21 = Military – Active Duty
    X22 = Military – Reserve
    X25 = Military – Honorably Retired
    X31 = Peace Officer – California – Active
    X32 = Peace Officer – Federal – Active
    X33 = Peace Officer – California – Honorably Retired
    X34 = Peace Officer – California – Reserve
    X35 = Peace Officer – Federal – Honorably Retired
    X41 = Carry Concealed Weapon (CCW) Permit Holder
    X81 = P.O.S.T. 832 PC (Firearms) Training
    X91 = Particular and Limited Authority Peace Officers
    X95 = Law Enforcement Service Gun to Family Member
    X98 = Valid Hunting License (long guns only)

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