How to Get a Blue Card in Rhode Island

By Suzanne S. Wiley - Updated April 07, 2017

Buying a handgun is legal in Rhode Island for those who meet the requirements set out by the state legislature. When first applying to purchase a firearm, you’ll not only undergo a background check, but you’ll be required to show proof that you’ve taken a state safety course. The document that verifies this is called the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (RI DEM) Pistol Revolver Certification, or “blue card.”

Enroll and complete a DEM handgun safety training course. This course takes at least two hours and occurs monthly or more often at several locations within Rhode Island.

Study the information in the document “Set Your Sights on Handgun Basics.” This is available at both the main DEM Fish and Wildlife Office, in the city of Wakefield, or at gun stores that participate in the certification program.

Locate a convenient location for your exam. This can be at the Wakefield DEM office, or at certain gun and sports stores.

Complete the exam. The test has both multiple choice and true/false questions, and you may take it in either English or Spanish.


You may be exempt from taking the course or test in some cases. These include active-duty and reserve military members, and under certain circumstances, you can substitute a hunter safety course for the blue card.

If you feel you should not be required to take the course, you must apply in writing to DEM to take a special test.

About the Author

Suzanne S. Wiley is an editor and writer in Southern California. She has been editing since 1989 and began writing in 2009. Wiley received her master's degree from the University of Texas and her work appears on various websites.

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