First, assess your eligibility (you need to live 5 years in Canada before applying, you cannot have criminal records or prohibitions to own firearms etc.) Then - take PAL course (CFSC and/or CRFSC safety training). Upon successful completion of your safety training you may fill in application form (5592 if you are 18+ or 5485 for minors) and send it to RCMP. More precisely:
Yes, that is done on purpose. You have to call the Chief Firearms Office to obtain the form.
No. It is somewhat like your driving license - you need to demonstrate practical skills to a certified instructor. That is why it cannot be done online. All what you can do online is to find the course, enroll and to prepare to the course. The course and exam(-s) are always in person.
Yes. The exam in case of CFSC will contain one quiz of 50 questions plus practical exam. In case of CRFSC there will be 2 quizzes 50 questions each.
At the moment of writing, the only license type available for new applicants is PAL (restricted or non-restricted).
CFSC contains 1 theoretical test (50 questions) and 1 practical exam. CRFSC as well contains 1 theoretical test (50 questions as well) and a practical exam. At practical exams you will have to identify the types of firearms (you will be asked to pick up, say, semi-auto shotgun) and ammo. Also - to demonstrate that you can operate firearms safely. For example, you are told to pick up a semiautomatic shotgun. You should take the correct firearm and then ACTS&PROVE it. You are told to cross a fence with it, or to put it on the table. Every operation should incorporate ACTS&PROVEing the arm. Also you will be asked to show stances and you will be asked questions and tasks about transporting and storing your firearms.
80%. But please bear in mind, that the questions are equal only in written test(-s). At least at the moment of writing, there is no such thing as must-questions (can be changed by RCMP at any moment, though). So, you have to get 40 out of 50 right answers to pass. But questions and tasks are unequal in the practical exam(-s): say, you get one point if you successfully identify a FMJ cartridge (that's a minor question), and, say, up to 5 points if you successfully show how to cross a fence with a gun (that's a bigger question). Also, some of your actions (for instance, if you point a gun at someone) will automatically mean a failure. In case of such failure you will have to retake written tests as well.
Multiple-choice and true/false.
You should contact Chief Firearms Office if you licence card is lost, stolen or physically damaged. Also, you have to notify Chief Firearms Office when your address has changed (within 30 days - at the moment of writing) and if you privately sold or bought a firearms (as soon as possible). And if you change your name as well.
According to bill C-42, your ATT is associated with your licence. After you buy your first restricted firearm, RCMP will issue an updated licence for you and automatically attach ATT to your new licence. Say, your licence had a number 99999999.0001. After you purchase the first restricted arm, they will issue a licence with a number 99999999.0002. This updated licence should be used instead of the original one (which invalidates automatically).
Yes, that's doable: since all the background checks have been already done when processing your Citizenship Application, all what RCMP needs is the proof of your citizenship.
Each licence card has an expiration date on it. Normally, PAL Licence is valid for five years.
No, it is implied that to own restricted firearms you also have to know how to operate non-restricted firearms as well. So, to get your restricted PAL, you have to complete both CFSC and CRFSC.
No, your CFSC/CRFSC certificates are good forever. Theoretically you may even lose your safety training certificate, RCMP will still have that in their records. But you will have to use 5592 form instead of 5614.
Non-restricted rifles and shotguns.
Yes, he can provided that he is under your supervision. The legislation stipulates that the supervision must be direct and immediate, so you have to be at the port with him, close enough to guarantee safe use of the handgun.
There are 3 legal classes of firearms in Canada: non-restricted, restricted and prohibited. Generally speaking, restricted are handguns, non-restricted are shotguns and rifles. Mnemonic rule: long word - long gun. But there are some exceptions apply: some handguns are prohibited; if a barrel is shorter than 470mm or if a long gun is shorter than 660mm (or can be folded so), that long gun is restricted. Plus some guns are restricted because of RCMP decision. Prohibited category includes: fully automatic firearms, handguns designed for concealed carry (shorter than 105mm or in .25 and .32 calibre), sawed-off rifles and shotguns. Similar to restricted, RCMP stipulated some firearms to be prohibited (rule of thumb: the more scary and aggressive firearm looks, the more chances that it is prohibited).
FAC stands for Firearms Acquisition Certificate, and its name speaks for itself: it was a permissive document you needed to acquire firearms (owning of firearms was absolutely legal without any permissions at that time).
FAC was substituted with PAL in mid-90s, so FAC does not exist anymore. But many elder people still refer to their licenses as to FAC, which is technically incorrect. Please refer to How to get your PAL license?
By law, for a first time applicant the minimum waiting period is 28 days. RCMP recommends you to wait at least 45 days before querying your application status. The actual timespan will depend on their workload, and may be 3 to 5 months easily. And, please don't be disappointed too much: they actually did a great job and speeded it up very significantly!
No, you are good to apply for your license at any time regardless of how long ago you got your safety training certificate.
In brief, you should know the definition (it is distance between the lands or between the grooves of the rifling inside the barrel), how the calibre is measured and that normally you cannot use a cartridge in a firearm with different datastamp no matter that it fits. Read more about Calibre.
In one week. There is a minimum 1 week waiting period (stipulated by CFP) before you can retest.
Now you can transport your restricted firearms:
No, since 2015 nobody can eliminate firearms safety course to get PAL license.
Yes and no. Since minor's license implies non-restricted arms only, there is no problem with the CFSC. And when the minor turns 18, it can be converted into a full-fledged PAL licence. Restricted course, though, can be taken by a minor only for personal interest: it doesn't count when you apply for your licence.
Unfortunately, no. Even though long-gun registry disestablished, it is still required to pass firearms safety training and get at least a non-restricted PAL license. It is not just a red tape: otherwise RCMP cannot guarantee that you can use firearms safely.
In brief, you should know when you can hunt specific game, where you can hunt and shoot (and where you are not allowed to shoot), where to aim, how to choose appropriate ammo, some legal matters of specific province, where you can find all such information; also how to butcher etc. - i.e. everything what makes your hunt 100% legal and 100% safe.
A government issued photo ID is the only must. If you prefer to make some notes down the road, please bring a pen and a notebook. And, goes without saying, don't bring any firearms and/or ammo to the classes.
Either from your instructor (which typically costs $20) or you can download a soft copy of both CFSC and CRFSC manuals from here. Alternatively, you can use the previous version of the manuals: CFSC and CRFSC. It is highly recommended to familiarize yourself with the manuals before attending classes.
1. Download the manuals here. Pay attention to ACTS and PROVE (you should remember it by heart!), action types of firearms, firearm terminology, types of ammunition, shooting stances, storing and transpotation. 2. Check yourself by quizzes at crfsc.safetyquizz.com.