Lawmakers in Indiana shied away from adopting true Constitutional Carry legislation this year, though there’s enough support in the legislature that I suspect the topic will be revisited next session. Even though the Hoosier State didn’t join others like Texas, Tennessee, Iowa, and Utah in approving permitless carry, legislators did end up approving a bill that removed the fee for a concealed carry license, and the new law took effect on Thursday.
Indianans appear to be very interested in taking advantage of the new law, because they’ve overwhelmed the online portal where folks can apply for their free lifetime license to carry.
“Due to a high number of current applicants, we must limit the number of individuals applying at one time. Please try again later.”
In a statement to WANE 15, Indiana State Police said Hoosiers trying to apply for a lifetime gun permit should be patient:
“Today is the first day where Indiana Hoosiers can now go online and apply for a free lifetime permit to carry a handgun. As expected, the Indiana State Police is receiving a large influx of applications being submitted on this first day. With the increased number of applications that are being submitted, the Indiana State Police is asking for the public’s patience and understanding, as we diligently continue to work through such a large quantity of applications.”
I checked the Indiana State Police firearms portal this morning, and it looked like applicants were able to fill out their online application, though there was still a warning on the website alerting applicants that “Due to the high volume in application submissions, you may experience delays in scheduling your fingerprint appointment online.”
It’s also important to note that while the state of Indiana is no longer charging a fee for processing the concealed carry applications, gun owners should be prepared to continue to fork over some cash.
There is a charge for both set of fingerprints. IdentiGO, one of the locations approved by state police, charges $12.50 to get fingerprinted. An appointment is required. On Thursday, IdentiGO had 55 people scheduled for fingerprinting.
Everyone who applies for a license to carry is required to pass a background check from their local police department, which includes fingerprints.
A note: Marion County applicants are required to get their second set of fingerprints taken at the City-County Building. The city government charges $50 for a lifetime license application.
Kimberly Westbrook of Indianapolis paid her $50 and was told it could be weeks before her license was mailed to her. “For this process, you have to wait like four to six weeks for your actual card to come in the mail.”
If the state can process the flurry of applications in four to six weeks, good on them. In fact, maybe the state of Illinois can hire some of the Indiana State Police as consultants, since the Illinois State Police are currently taking about six months to process concealed carry applications.
I’m glad to see such high demand for carry licenses in Indiana, but honestly, the state should still be moving towards pure Constitutional Carry. The tweaks to the state’s licensing laws are a big step in the right direction, but there are still some additional steps to take before Indiana catches up to its neighbor Kentucky and other nearby Constitutional Carry states like Iowa, Missouri, and West Virginia.