Gun Permits

Permits to Purchase Handguns And Permits to Carry/Transfer Handguns
Please Read Instructions Thoroughly All Wadena County residents who want to apply for a permit to carry a handgun must do so in person through the Wadena County Sheriff’s Office. Residents who want to apply for permits to purchase or transfer handguns must apply in person to the police department in the city in which they live. If a resident lives in one of the townships in Wadena County, he or she must apply to the Sheriff’s Office. Applications for both permits to purchase and permits to carry are accepted Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM (excluding holidays) at the Law Enforcement Center administrative entrance located at 415 S Jefferson St Wadena.
The fees are as follows:
  • $100 new carry
  • $75 renew
  • $85 late renew ( expired over 30 days)
  • Address change with new card $10
  • Purchase permits are free

Carry Applicants must: 
  • Apply in person. 
  • Be at least 21 years old. 
  • Be a citizen or permanent resident of the United States.  
  • Provide original photo ID (driver’s license, state photo identification card or valid passport with photo), and current address (matching the address on the identification.  
  • Original certificate of firearms training by a Minnesota certified instructor according to (MN statute 624.714, sub. 2 a),
  • applicants must not be prohibited by law from possessing a firearm. 
  • Submit a completed state application with the required documents.
  • A $100 nonrefundable fee. (cash or check) In addition. 

A person who is otherwise ineligible for a permit due to a criminal conviction but who has obtained a pardon or expungement setting aside the conviction, sealing the conviction, or otherwise restoring applicable rights must submit a copy of the relevant order when applying.

Reciprocity of your MN Carry Permit: Permits issued in Minnesota are valid throughout Minnesota. Minnesota law requires that states must have substantially similar standards in order to be granted permit to carry reciprocity. If you plan to visit another state and wish to carry a firearm while traveling, you should contact that state prior to traveling. Most states have web pages dedicated to the subject of handgun carry permits. For a listing of states with permits valid and not in Minnesota maintained by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, click here

Renewal of Permits/Change of Address/Lost or Destroyed Permits: Permits to carry are valid for 5 years from the date of issuance. Permit holders can renew permits at the Sheriff’s Office 90 days prior to the expiration date of the current permit. Permit holders must present proof that you have retaken the approved firearms training within one year of the date of renewal. Permit to Carry renewals are $75, but your current card must not be expired in order to be charged this fee. If your permit has reached its expiration date, you may still renew your current permit at a discounted rate of $85 up to 30 days after the expiration date on your current card. If your current card has been expired more for more than 30 days when you submit your Permit to Carry application, your Permit application will be considered as an application for a new permit and you will be charged a $100 application fee. Within 30 days after changing a permanent address, or within 30 days of having lost or destroyed the permit card, the permit holder must notify the issuing Sheriff’s Office of the change, loss, or destruction. If card is lost or destroyed, permit holder must provide a notarized statement that the card has been lost or destroyed. Fees may apply. Failure to provide notification as required is a petty misdemeanor.

Emergency Permit to Carry: Emergency permits may be issued by the Sheriff if it is determined that the individual is in an emergency situation that may constitute an immediate risk to the safety of the applicant or someone residing in the applicant’s household.

Conceal and Carry: Although this law is frequently referred to as the “conceal and carry law”, Minnesota law does not require you to conceal the handgun when you carry it. Discretion is advised, however. A handgun in plain sight can intimidate and infuriate. Conversely, a concealed handgun can provide protection without the negative connotations often associated with firearms.

Permit to Purchase or Transfer a Firearm Under Minnesota law: Handgun transfers involve any sale, gift, loan, assignment or other delivery to another person. If you possess a valid permit to carry a handgun, that permit constitutes a permit to purchase. You don’t need to apply for a separate permit to purchase.

Applicants must:
  • Appear in person.
  • Be 18 years old to acquire or possess a handgun or military-style assault weapon. (Federal law requires you to be 21 years old to acquire handguns from licensed dealers) 
  • Fully complete a state application. 

The law enforcement agency to which you applied will conduct a series of background-related checks to assure you meet the eligibility requirements established in state law. Once those checks are complete, a permit will be issued that is valid for one year and may be used to purchase a handgun statewide. A person who is otherwise ineligible for a permit due to a criminal conviction but who has obtained a pardon or expungement setting aside the conviction, sealing the conviction, or otherwise restoring applicable rights, must submit a copy of the relevant order when applying.
If you want to make a one-time purchase of a handgun from a dealer, and you do not have a permit to purchase, you may apply directly at the gun shop where you will purchase the handgun. The gun shop will require you to complete a consent form that allows them to conduct a name and date-of-birth background check to determine your eligibility to purchase a gun. The gun shops are entitled to charge a fee for this service.

 For additional information, visit the MN Bureau of Criminal Apprehension at Or contact the Wadena County Sheriff’s Office Records Unit at 218-632-6059.