Firearms Safety Certificate (FSC)

December 7, 2016

Firearms Safety Certificate (FSC) is required to purchase a firearm in California unless exempt, list below. January 1, 2015, the Handgun Safety Certificate program has been changed to Firearm Safety Certificate (FSC). The FSC program previously only applied to handguns now applies any firearm (handguns and long guns), unless exempt, list below. Any questions you have about exemptions should be directed to an available FSC instructor.

You must hold a valid Handgun Safety Certificate to purchase handguns only until it expires. Long gun purchases/acquisitions made January 1, 2015, and thereafter, an FSC shall be required. Once your FSC is obtained, it can be used for both handgun and long gun purchases/acquisitions.

To get your FSC, you must take and pass a written test on firearm safety. The Firearm Safety Certificate Study Guide is available for free, FSC test here: FSC Study Guide.

The firearm safety protocols and DOJ Certified Instructor standards were established and implemented by DOJ.

Current exemption List

Special Weapons Permit Holder
Operation of Law Representative
Handgun being returned to the owner
FFL collector with COE
Military – Active Duty
Military – Reserve
Military – Honorably Retired
Peace Officer – California – Active
Peace Officer – Federal – Active
Peace Officer – California – Honorably Retired
Peace Officer – California – Reserve
Peace Officer – Federal – Honorably Retired
Carry Concealed Weapon (CCW) Permit Holder
P O S T 832 PC (Firearms) Training
Particular and Limited Authority Peace Officers
Law Enforcement Service Gun to Family Member
Valid Hunting License (long guns only)

Exemptions require proper acceptable documentation.