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How to Obtain Your CPL in 4-Steps

Mark Mandell, Esq.

Looking to obtain your Concealed Pistol License (CPL) in the State of Michigan but don’t know if you are eligible and/or how to apply? Look no further, for your convenience we have compiled all the information you will need to determine if a CPL is right for you.

Step 1: Eligibility Requirements

Before you start the application process, make sure you are able to answer yes to all the following:
  • Am I 21 or older? (per federal law)
  • Am I a US citizen?
  • Am I a legal resident of Michigan and have been living in the state for at least 6 months? 
    • If you are unsure, just see if at least one of the following applies:
      • I have a valid Michigan driver’s license and/or personal identification card
      • I am registered to vote in Michigan
      • I am an active duty member of the United States Armed Forces who is stationed out of state but Michigan is still my home of record; or I am permanently stationed in Michigan 
  • Do I have a valid Michigan driver’s license or official Michigan personal identification card?
  • I am not, nor ever was, subject to an order or disposition for:
    • Involuntary Hospitalization or Alternative Treatment?
    • Legal incapacitation?
    • Personal protection order?
    • Bond or conditional release prohibiting purchase or possession of a firearm? (does not apply to past bonds or conditional releases)
    • Finding of not guilty by reason of insanity?
  • I have never received a dishonorable discharge from the United States Armed Forces
  • Will I pass a criminal background check? 

Step 2: Pistol Safety Training Course

After you have made sure you are able eligible, you will need to successfully complete an appropriate pistol safety training course. To find available courses near you, contact your local law enforcement agency or use the class locator on http://www.ccwclasses.net/cpl-classes-michigan.
  • Average Course Length:  minimum of 8 hours in duration (5 hours in classroom instruction, 3 hours shooting range instruction)
  • Average Cost: $100-$200
  • Make sure your certificate states the following: “This course complies with Section 5j of 1927 PA 372” and “the Individual has successfully completed the course” 

Step 3: File a Concealed Pistol License Application

After you have received a valid certification of completion, you will need to complete a Concealed Pistol License Application and file it with the County Clerk of the area in which you reside. Here is a checklist of items to bring with you to the County Clerk:
  • CPL Course/Class Certificate of Completion
  • $100.00 for the application and licensing fee payable to the county clerk (payable by cash or credit card)
  • Fingerprinting receipt from a Michigan Law Enforcement Agency 
    • Or they can take your fingerprints on-site at county clerk (may be an additional $15.00 for fingerprint service)

Once all fees are paid and fingerprints are filed, the county clerk will issue a license or notice of statutory disqualification within 45 days. Instructions on appeal process will be included with a notice of disqualification. 

Step 4: Know When to Leave Your Weapon at Home

Where you can/cannot take your weapon:

Other states that will honor your Michigan-licensed CPL: 
  • Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming

States that will not honor your Michigan-licensed CPL: 
  • California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Guam, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, New York City, Oregon, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, Virgin Islands, American Samoa, N. Mariana Islands

Michigan Pistol-Free Zones: follow the link for most updated list: http://www.michigan.gov/msp/0,4643,7-123-1878_1591_3503_4654-10947--,00.html

Step 5: CPL Renewal Program

You will need to renew your CPL every 4-5 years, depending on the issue date and your date of birth. The cost will be $115.00. The renewal application does not require you to re-take the CPL course, but it is recommended if you have not touched the weapon or practiced at a shooting range since you have received the license. Plus, the CPL education is constantly evolving and keeping that knowledge fresh in your mind can be the difference in a life-or-death situation.

I hope you find this guide helpful as you navigate the concealed weapon licensing process. Once you are a licensed weapon holder, you will then be responsible for the safe-keeping of your weapon, staying up to date on all laws and regulations, and most importantly the ability to judge when use of such weapon is absolutely necessary. This newfound responsibility should not be taken lightly, as even those most prepared can find themselves in legal trouble. In the unlikely event you are facing weapons-related charges, you need to contact Fausone Bohn immediately and ask for attorney Mark Mandell. Whether or not you handled the situation correctly, as a CPL holder you can bet that you will be at the top of the list when the investigation starts.

As a former prosecuting attorney, Attorney Mark Mandell has extensive criminal trial experience. While some attorneys avoid trials, Mark is always prepared to take his clients' case to trial if needed. Mark taught trial advocacy skills as an adjunct professor at the Thomas M. Cooley Law School. He uses his experience as a prosecutor and professor to fight for his clients, whether that be at trial or for the best possible plea agreement to minimize jail, prison, or probation. Experience and credibility is the name of the game when appearing before a judge and Attorney Mark Mandell has it!

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