How to apply for a firearms licence in Western Australia
Below is a simple step by step process to getting your firearms licence or additional firearm added to your existing licence.
Step 1. Genuine Reason.
Generally speaking there are only two commonly used genuine reasons for having firearms in WA.
Hunting / Destroying Livestock / Vermin control
Club Use or Sporting Shooting.
Each genuine reason requires its own paperwork for the licensing process. If you are wanting a firearm for destroying livestock or vermin control you will need to be a property owner or have a letter of support from a property owner. The size of the property will determine the maximum calibre you will be able to licence. For more information on what you can licence on your property call firearms licensing on: 1300 171 011 or Email Licensing Services Firearms. This is what is known in the industry as an “Open Licence” as it does not strictly require you to shoot regularly during the year.
If you are a recreational club sporting shooter you will need a letter of support from a shooting club. Each shooting club is different and will require you to be a financial member for a period of time before writing you a support letter. This licence type is known as a “Club Support” licence and will require you to remain a financial and active member of a shooting club in order to keep your firearm licence.
Step 2. Complete the Firearms Awareness Test
The firearms awareness test is a multiple choice test and can be carried out by a shooting club or by a registered firearms dealer. Please ensure that you have read through the WA Police Firearm Safety Booklet before sitting the test.
Once you have determined what type of firearm you are able to licence your next step is to purchase a firearm.
Step 3. Purchase a firearm (deposit only)
When you purchase (reserve) a firearm from a dealer you will be supplied with a Serviceability Certificate. This certificate contains the details of the firearm you will be purchasing and will be used in the licensing process. Please note. You will not be able to take the firearm out of the store until you return with the firearm stated on your licence.
Second hand firearms
If you are purchasing a second hand firearm you will need to have the firearm sent to a dealer so that they may write you a serviceability certificate and store the firearm until you have it on your licence.
Step 4. Application for Firearms Licence
Now that you have a genuine reason paperwork, firearms safety awareness certificate and serviceability certificate you are ready to fill out your application form. To do this, go to police.wa.gov.au/Police-Direct/Firearms and click on the link. Once completed and validated you will then print the document to take to the post office to pay the fee and submit the application to licensing. At the present time new firearms licenses can take up to 6 to 8 weeks to process. Don’t forget to bring 100 points of ID to the post office!
Step 5. Storage
Once you have submitted your application at the post office you can use this time to organise a gun safe. The licensing department will contact you a few weeks after submitting your application requesting detailed photos of your storage safe. You can either email or post these photos back to licensing. View the specifications for approved firearm storage.
Step 6. Picking up your firearm
Once you have your licence you can come back to the dealer to pick up your firearm.
For an additional firearm licence the above steps apply, minus the safety awareness and the storage paperwork. The 28 day cooling off period also doesn’t apply to additional applications.
Go forth, and enjoy. Remember to clean your firearm after use, and to periodically check your storage to make sure you are in line with your states requirements.
Hi, Good quality information. I was looking to purchase a rifle from Cleavers, interstate, you said a Serviceability Certificate will be supplied by the selling dealer, in speaking to a local dealer, he wants to charge me for the certificate. Surely if Cleavers supply one…why would I need another ?.
Also does the WAPOL safety awareness booklet contain all the information you need, to successfully complete the awareness test. I read somewhere about some curly questions, that I don’t really see information that relates in the booklet. I think curly questions might be a case of misinterpretation on the authors part !.
I was a shooter in NSW from 1967 to 74, then in WA from 74 to 77 and again in NSW from 77 to 81 when all firearms were stolen in a home invasion. I didn’t shoot after that and let license lapse.
No trace of licenses in either state so treated as a first timer, that’s cool but these curly questions didn’t seem like the safest answers to me, given the multiple choice answers and the order of wording, as seen in the blog.
That said, if the WAPOL Safety Awareness Certificate is based on information…within the booklet, who could complain ?.
Kind regards. Mark
Should Brazil adopt National Firearms Agreement?
”Second hand firearms
If you are purchasing a second hand firearm you will need to have the firearm sent to a dealer so that they may write you a serviceability certificate and store the firearm until you have it on your licence.”
This is not true, private sellers will need to fill in another form to confirm that they agree to sell it to a specific buyer. The seller has the right to keep it until they get a letter from wapol to say it has been taken off their name. No need to keep it at the dealer. And if the application gets knocked back, the gun will remain on the sellers license.
As for servicibility certificate, dealer, club armour, repairer and manufacturer can write you one. My club does it for free as a service to members.
The only time I would get a dealer involved is when the seller needs to get a gun off their name soon (quitting the sport, moving overseas) or are very far from me. Some sellers will prefer to transfer the gun to a dealer as part of the sales condition because once transferred to the dealer, the seller can wash their hands on it. I have done that in the past when I suspected the buyer may have trouble getting a license. But no, storage at dealer is not a legal requirement for private sale.