An increasing number of people across North Carolina are getting their concealed handgun permits (CHPs), also known as a CCH permit.
Since 2000, CCH permits, as well as NC's population, have grown. At the end of 2000, there were a little more than 46,000 CCH permits issued across the state. As of March 2019, the number of permits has risen to 604,737, which is the 10th highest in the country. In the same time period, the state population rose from 8 million to 10.2 million.
In order to get a CCH permit, you must be 21 years of age or older, and be a US citizen or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the United States. There are also other requirements, such as a clean background check and mental health check.
If you find yourself eligible to get your CCH permit, you must begin the process by taking a concealed carry class. Yes, the class is a tad time consuming, and yes, it can be inconvenient, but it's required to get the permit. Essentially, the course will break down all the do's and don'ts for conceal carrying a pistol, and test your ability to handle and shoot one.
For the first several hours, you will sit in a classroom and an instructor will go over all the various laws and restrictions that come along with a CCH permit. For example, did you know that conceal carrying a gun, even with a permit, is illegal in NC if you've had even a drop of alcohol to drink? These are the kind of important facts you will learn in the class. After several hours of learning, you will take a written test, and you must pass it to move on to the shooting portion of the class.
After passing the written test, you will have to pass a range test. For this test you can use your own pistol, or, depending on the instructor, borrow a pistol. In this test, you will shoot at a paper target from 3 yards, 5 yards, and 7 yards away. At each distance, you will fire a certain number of shots (this varies depending on the course) and have to land a certain percentage of them on the target.
For the vast majority of classes, you must land 70 percent of the total shots you have taken. If you pass this part of the course, you will receive a signed certificate from your instructor with your name on it, stating that you have passed the course. If you've gotten this far, congratulations, the hard part is over.
Part 2 = Next week Source: The NC Sheriff E-Newsletter