Pistol purchase permits and concealed carry permits in Guilford County – like many other things in 2020 and 2021 – have taken a lot longer than usual thanks to the pandemic.  

However, on Thursday, Aug. 5, the Guilford County Sheriff’s Department announced that, after taking a host of actions to address the issues, the gun-permitting process is back on a relatively timely track.

The Sheriff’s Department reported that, since Thursday, April 22 of this year, the department has completed the processing of 2,593 concealed carry handgun permits.  Officers in the gun permit office completed 709 concealed carry permits by early June and added another 1,884 by Tuesday, August 3.

The long processing times for gun permits have become a sore spot for many county gun owners over the last year and a half.  County residents have addressed the Guilford County Commissioners and expressed their dissatisfaction, and some have complained in the media and on social media.   Some of those people especially wanted protection during the pandemic, but, instead, saw the pandemic march on and on while experiencing permit delay after delay.

According to the Sheriff’s Department, while new concealed carry permits are submitted to the gun permit office each day, the number of pending concealed carry applications has been reduced from 6,337 in early June of 2021 to 5,203 this week.  So, the number is still large, but shrinking.

Also, as of Tuesday, August 3, new concealed carry permit applicants should be able to schedule a fingerprinting appointment in about two or three weeks.  Some gun owners during the early days of the pandemic found out that that one step in the process could take months.

Also, since April 22, the department has finished processing 2,337 pistol purchase permits.  Currently, the number of those pending applications has been reduced from 420 in April to 116 as of this week.