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In Illinois, gun registration and ownership are closely monitored through the Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) Card. To legally possess firearms or ammunition in the state, residents must adhere to strict regulations, including completing the FOID card application, particularly in Chicago. This process includes obtaining an Illinois FOID card number. Additionally, Illinois offers a concealed carry license, allowing individuals to carry firearms in a concealed manner. The Illinois concealed carry license requires separate qualifications and training.


What is a Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) Card?  

To legally own a firearm in Illinois, a person needs to possess a Firearm Identification Card. These cards act as licenses and are regulated by the Illinois State Police (ISP). The ISP is responsible for vetting all applications and ensuring that the applicant meets all requirements to possess a firearm in the State of Illinois.  A FOID card in Illinois is not the same as a conceal carry license.

What Are the Application Requirements?  

Generally, an applicant needs to be a resident of Illinois, over 21 years of age, and not otherwise prohibited from possessing a firearm by state or federal law.  

What Do I Need to Apply for a FOID Card?  

To apply for a FOID card, you need a valid state ID or Driver’s License. The application process requires the information contained on the state ID. Additionally, you will need a headshot photo taken within the last 30 days that is centered, and your face is not obscured in any fashion. You will also need to pay the application fee as well.  

What If My Driver’s License or State ID Expired?  

You must have a valid ID to apply for a FOID card. If your ID is currently expired, you will not be able to submit your application. You should renew your driver's license or ID before beginning the application process.  


Are There Restrictions on Who Can Apply for a FOID Card?  

No, anyone can apply for a FOID card if they meet the requirements. The Illinois State Police reviews the applications to ensure that each applicant is appropriate to own and possess firearms.  

Can I be Denied a FOID Card?  

If you are restricted by law from possessing firearms, you can be denied a FOID card. There are a broad range of people that are restricted from having a FOID card. Still, the primary groups that are restricted are individuals diagnosed with mental health issues, were admitted for care related to suicidal tendencies, or people who have been convicted of a felony crime.  In special circumstances states will have “red flag” laws where you can file a petition to have someone’s firearm removed.  

What Can I Do if I am Denied a FOID Card?  

If you are denied a FOID card, you can appeal that decision to either the Illinois State Police director or the Circuit Court of your county. To learn more about FOID card appeals, please read our article on the appeal process.  

Request a consultation with an Illinois attorney. Call our office at (630) 324-6666 or schedule a consultation with one of our experienced Illinois lawyers today. You can also fill out our confidential contact form and we will get back to you shortly.

Disclaimer: The information provided on this blog is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Each individual's legal needs are unique, and these materials may not be applicable to your legal situation. Always seek the advice of a competent attorney with any questions you may have regarding a legal issue. Do not disregard professional legal advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this blog.

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