Civilian Weapons Permitting through Columbus County Sheriff's Office

The Columbus County Sheriff’s Office issues two types of permits relating to handguns:

Permit to purchase a handgun, which must be obtained to purchase a handgun, and Concealed handgun permit, which must be obtained to carry a concealed handgun.

Purchase Permits

Purchase permit applications are done online. Click the external link above or below to begin the application process.

Application Process:

  • Enter the required information for the Gun Permit Application
  • Pay the fee  – $8.53 per permit
  • Submit your application electronically
  • Within 5 business days, you must come to the office to sign your Mental Health Release form
  • Your permit will be processed
  • If approved, you will be notified of the status of your application by phone, text, and email
  • If denied, you will be notified by email and a letter
  • If approved, you will need to pick up your permit from the Sheriff’s Office within 30 days of notification


  • This process will take up to 14 days, after all necessary documents have been received by the Sheriff’s Office.


The Applicant Must be:

of good moral character, and a resident of Columbus County, and able to certify that the weapon is required for one or more of the following reasons only:

  • Protection of home, business or property of the applicant,
  • Target shooting,
  • Collecting,
  • Hunting.

And applicant must be 21 years of age or older due to restrictions on firearms dealers.

The Applicant Must Not be:

convicted of any violent felony, arson, controlled substance felony or similar offense in any jurisdiction or currently under indictment for any felonious offense, or a fugitive from justice, or an unlawful user of, addicted to, marijuana, any depressant, stimulant or narcotic drug,or an adjudged incompetent on the grounds of mental illness, nor have been committed to any mental institution. ( Statutory Authority: G.S. 14-404 )

Permit Denial Reasons:

The following is a partial list of reasons for denial. Other reasons will be considered on a case by case basis by Sheriff’s Office personnel. Reasons include but are not limited to:

  • Any felony conviction
  • Underage Applicant
  • Use of False Identification
  • Any pending misdemeanor, felony or traffic charge
  • Assault charges
  • Resisting or obstructing a law enforcement officer
  • Drug charges
  • Domestic violence charges
  • On probation
  • Mental problems
  • Moral character of applicant
  • False information provided on application

Important Notice

If you are in a vehicle and stopped by a law enforcement officer, you should put both hands on the steering wheel, announce you are in possession of a concealed handgun and state where you have it concealed, and that you are in possession of a permit. Do not remove your hands from the wheel until instructed to do so by the officer.