How to Apply for a FOID Card in Illinois

By Contributor - Updated June 14, 2017
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If you are a resident of Illinois and would like to purchase a firearm or ammunition, you must have a valid, current Firearm Owner's Identification (FOID) Card. The requirements for being approved by the Illinois state police are difficult, but the application process is not. Follow these steps to complete your FOID card application.

Contact your local firearm shops. These stores will assist you with completing the application, take your photograph and mail the application for a small fee.

If there are no firearm shops that offer that service in your area, obtain a FOID card application. Contact your local police station to ask where to obtain one, or visit the Illinois State Police website to download a copy.

Complete the application according to the instructions. Be extremely truthful in filling out the application, as entering false information is a felony.

Tape a passport-sized photo of yourself in the space provided.

Include a check for $10.00, payable to FOID, with the application. This is the application fee and is non-refundable.

Mail the completed application to:

Illinois State Police Firearm Owner's Identification Unit Post Office Box 19233 Springfield, Illinois 62794-9233


If you are under the age of 21, your parent or guardian will need to sign the application as well.

FOID cards expire 10 years from the date of issuance.

The verification and approval process takes anywhere from 30 days to 12 weeks, depending upon how many applications the FOID department has recently received.


FOID cards are not concealed carry permits. They allow only for the legal possession, transportation and purchase of firearms and ammunition.

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