Should I Get A Permit If I Don’t Plan to Carry?

This is a very valid question to ask. If you do not plan on carrying around a firearm are there any other reasons you should consider getting your concealed carry permit or license anyway?

What follows are my thoughts on things you might consider in making this decision.

The Education and Training Is Valuable

I would start by suggesting that regardless if you want to get the actual permit/license or not you can only gain by taking the state required training course. Education is always good and nobody can ever get enough of it.

Also, in taking the class not only will you walk away more educated about your state's laws, gun safety, and shooting skills; you will also have more information that would help you decide if it is worth it to you or not to actually go and apply for the license.

While taking a class likely means a financial investment, any gun owner regardless of their desire to carry concealed should invest in as much training as they can. So, yes, take the class regardless of your plans to apply for and obtain the permit itself.

It Suggests Responsibility and Care

Applying for and receiving your permit also communicates to law enforcement, judges, and juries that you are a responsible citizen who was willing to spend your time and money both to get educated and to go through a proper legal process that includes a criminal background check.

In confrontations with law enforcement and in a worst-case scenario legal incident in which you end up in a courtroom; having received your permit is only a good thing that reflects positively on your character, ethics, and level of personal responsibility.

If The Day Ever Comes When You Want to Walk Out The Door With That Gun …

If you are asking the question about the arguments in favor of getting a permit then I assume you do have some desire to use a firearm in some degree of personal protection. Perhaps right now you are solely focused on having a firearm for home defense and so you don't think you need a permit. How confident are you that the day will NEVER come in which you choose to walk out that door with the concealed firearm?

On the off chance that you go to meet a stranger in a transaction, or need to go in search of your missing dog late at night, or any other number of unlikely but realistic scenarios where having your personal protection tool with you would be wise wouldn't you like to have the legal ability to do so?

Outside of just the straight odds I would have you consider that if your life is EVER worth defending (like when you are in your home) then it is ALWAYS worth defending even when you leave the home.

Depending On State Laws The Permit Might Be Necessary Just to Get to The Gun Range

I'm not an expert on the laws of all fifty states but I know a number of states that have laws that are almost set up to trap gun owners. In Colorado for example, without a permit, you can have your concealed firearm in your home and in your car but not anywhere else. So if you park your car on the street and walk from your front door to your car with a gun in a range bag you just broke the law unless you have a permit.

When you go hunting, when you go to the gunsmith, when you go to the gun range; without a permit, there may be some restrictions about how you can transport your firearms to and from those places. By obtaining a permit you likely can stop worrying about it and move freely.

Open Carry Isn't a Full-Time Solution

You might be thinking right now that in your state you can open carry without any sort of permit or license and in many states that is true. However, while you may have the right to carry that firearm on you without paying for any training or government license that doesn't make it responsible or tactically wise 100% of the time.

There are just circumstances in which it makes more sense to carry concealed. There may also be specific places where open carry is restricted and concealed carry (with a valid permit) is not. That is true in every open carry state I've ever researched.

The Only Downside I Can Think Of – Does It Put You On “The Grid?”

Now, I do understand the concern that getting a concealed carry permit somehow puts you on the grid. That now government authorities now know you own guns.

In the vast majority of states while the state or each county in the state does maintain a record of all the permit holders in their jurisdiction, they do not openly share that information with other government agencies or the public without a specific legal mandate such as a subpoena or warrant legally granted for a specific legal purpose which would be specific to an individual and would not require access to the entire database.

Now, the laws could change and I suppose that in theory, a new law could allow that the Federal Government could mandate that all states and counties turn over the entire database. In my own opinion, the odds of that happening are EXTREMELY low in the next decade or three and even if it did happen it should only be a concern if you have done nothing else to already be identified as a gun owner. Like having bought a gun from a dealer whose records could (in the same rare legal potential theory) also be gathered by government authorities. Or by having liked a page on Facebook that is for gun owners or by having taken a hunter safety course or having received a permit to hunt. All those things similarly could identify you as a gun owner.

No, in my opinion, concerns about being on “the grid” are not valid enough or at very least are outweighed by the benefits of having the permit.

In Conclusion

If you already have your permit I realize I'm preaching to the choir. Share this article with friends or family that have been hesitant to take action.

If you have been hesitant to take action I hope I've addressed your concerns above. Please share other thoughts, ideas, or concerns in the comments below!

About Mitch Goerdt

Mitch Goerdt is the Director of Marketing and Events at Born and raised amongst the Northeastern woods and waters of Minnesota, Mitch's childhood was filled with adventure, sports, and a deep appreciation for the outdoor lifestyle. His early career saw him don the hat of a mechanic and welder in the taconite mines. However, the call of distant horizons was too strong to resist. Mitch embarked on a journey across the country, soaking in diverse cultures and landscapes. This quest for knowledge also led him back to school, where he secured a Bachelor's Degree in Marketing Communications. Today, at, Mitch spends his days crafting content and using his imagination and skills to leave an impression on his audience. Outside the professional realm, he is a lifelong learner who finds solace in outdoor adventures and satisfies his love of athletics and competition in the world of competitive slowpitch softball.


  1. Darkwing on October 18, 2018 at 9:12 am

    Best thing to do is do not get a permit, it puts you o the state DL data base. Do what I have been doing for 25 years, carry but do not get a permit. It just puts you on the list. What government gives, government can take away

  2. Steve on October 24, 2018 at 3:01 am

    But if charged for a firearms violation, you may potentially void your ability to own firearms and may be ‘put on the grid’ by record in all 50 states.

  3. Bob Crifasi on October 26, 2018 at 9:24 am

    Darkwing, are you troll baiting? ?

  4. Derek McDoogle on June 25, 2019 at 12:40 pm

    I totally agree when you said that education is always good and nobody can ever get enough of it and especially when it comes to using a firearm. After moving to our current area, I figured out that many of my neighbors own a firearm for their own protection and hunting as well. Thanks for helping me learn more about whether or not to purchase a firearm but if decide to do so, I will definitely take ma training first.

  5. Charles A Roland on September 3, 2019 at 8:21 pm

    The certification paper in the mail and I need or would like to have one theses carry permit card please let me know how I can get one of them please

    • Jacob Paulsen on September 4, 2019 at 7:51 am

      Charles I think you are asking how you get a concealed carry permit? Go to and click on your state. Look there for more information about what is required to apply.

  6. Gregory E Brubaker on February 10, 2021 at 1:01 pm

    I live in FL and scheduled my CWL appointment online. I went there this morning at 8 45 with my Drivers license and DD214. They took my info on a computer, took my picture, took my finger prints and $119.It only took 20 minutes.

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