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Old August 26, 2014, 09:25 PM   #1
Snowblind
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First-Time CCW Permit Application

Apologies if this is not in the proper section; I couldn't find a more pertinent category.

I've been living in Massachusetts for several months now, after getting a job here. Now that things have settled down, I'm doing the legwork for the application for a CCW. I'm new to how firearms are done in MA, and wanted to know if there was anything in particular I should do or say during the application process. I'm looking for a Class-A, unrestricted carry permit.

More specifically, I'm deciding who to call on for references at the moment. I've already done my safety course, and asked the instructors there about reference letters, and they explained they aren't particularly important- that the references are rarely called.

Should I be fine just listing my best friend from back home and my GF? Or should I try to find someone more "reputable?" (The aforementioned individuals have known me for many years, and are both quite reputable people themselves, however I do have a retired NYPD officer in the family... perhaps a more 'desirable' reference???)
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Old August 26, 2014, 09:26 PM   #2
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Furthermore, what should I ask my references to even write about?
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Old August 27, 2014, 02:12 AM   #3
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Use the best references that meet the criteria. Meeting criteria is the most important. For example references need to be residents of the state or county you are applying. If such stipulations are not stated, use the retired NYPD officer and anyone else you can think of.

Most people prefer a heads up that there name is used as a reference for jobs, CCW etc. I would say 99% of the time, references are not called or contacted.
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Old August 27, 2014, 09:57 PM   #4
mp510
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When I obtained my temporary permit (in Connecticut), my town was one which required reference letters. I had my references write about my level of maturity and responsibility as well as temperament. I also coached them to include a statement in the letter to the effect of my being a suitable person to possess a pistol permit (which served two points- addressing the subjective suitability clause in Connecticut law as well as satisfying my local issuing authority's requirement that the author of the letter indicate that the letter is supporting a pistol permit application).

My references were all people I went to college with. They knew me well and I happened to be friends with them. They all also knew about my involvement in positions of responsibility. My town (in CT) did call my references. When I obtained my NR in NH, they did not call my references. When I obtained my NR LTC-A, I did not have to provide references- I'm not sure what BI the state did beyond criminal history checks and a DMH check.

Remember that the purpose of the reference.

Consult your local issuing authority (which would be your CLEO, in Mass) about whether the individuals you propose would be acceptable.
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Old August 28, 2014, 11:08 AM   #5
mikey98e
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I don't know if I'm violating any THR rules by suggesting you go to a different web site. You should give northeastshooters.com a visit. That site covers New England shooting and laws.
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Old August 28, 2014, 04:08 PM   #6
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Is MASS a "shall issue" or a "may issue" state?

If they are "may issue" (and I'll bet they are) you'll be wasting your time and money. "May Issue" pretty much means you have to prove to us you have to have a gun ... and then we =might= let you carry one.
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Old August 28, 2014, 07:45 PM   #7
herrwalther
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgkdrgn
If they are "may issue" (and I'll bet they are) you'll be wasting your time and money. "May Issue" pretty much means you have to prove to us you have to have a gun ... and then we =might= let you carry one.
Mass is a may issue state. A friend of mine and fellow soldier recently got his Mass carry permit after nearly 6 months for his Ruger 1911. I provided one of his recommendation letters prior to moving out of the area. May issue states are like pulling teeth and dentists would say the teeth are easier.
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Old August 28, 2014, 09:30 PM   #8
Snowblind
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I was coached by the instructors who did my safety course regarding the 'may issue' nature of the permits- they said I had a very strong case given my background and needs.

Besides being an Eagle Scout and experienced firearms owner (I was trained by the BSA, and have been shooting since 13, and a firearms owner since 18,) I frequently transport valuable musical equipment at odd hours of the night as part of a band (we probably move well over 20k worth of equipment for each gig), and do not have any friends or neighbors who live near me who would be able to assist me in an emergency. (Because I just moved into the state a few months ago.)

Also, I've taken several firearms courses, and intend to take several more specifically to be properly trained to carry a concealed weapon.

If that doesn't describe both the perfect qualification (and "need," dare I say) for a permit, then I don't know what would.
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Old August 28, 2014, 09:40 PM   #9
Snowblind
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The issue with the local PD is that their requirements are very vague. I called their licensing office and asked them directly about exactly what they required, and all they said was "two letters of reference."

Nothing was mentioned in the call, or on their Web site, about the references needed to fulfill particular criteria. The requirement seems to be a local PD requirement anyway.

I'm not eager to call back to confirm; it took nearly an hour to connect to the licensing office. I also contacted the licensing offer directly and left a message, and followed up with an e-mail a week later. Neither were returned, but I'm not exactly surprised- I'm sure they've got lots to do.
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Old August 28, 2014, 11:00 PM   #10
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Quote:
If they are "may issue" (and I'll bet they are) you'll be wasting your time and money. "May Issue" pretty much means you have to prove to us you have to have a gun ... and then we =might= let you carry one.
May issue does not necessarily mean no issue. In Massachusetts, as long as somebody is not prohibited and is of good moral character, they really should not have any problem getting an LTC- even in big cities like Boston. Many towns issue for all lawful purposes, sometimes universally, and others do apply restrictions (especially in Boston and other parts of eastern Mass). Regardless, getting a license IS doable. Once licensed, Mass is a good state for gun owners despite some of the oenerous laws. There are a lot of great, affordable clubs to join and if your license allows carry- very few places that are statutorily off limits and very few places that post against carry.
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Old August 29, 2014, 05:04 PM   #11
Snowblind
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mp510 View Post
May issue does not necessarily mean no issue. In Massachusetts, as long as somebody is not prohibited and is of good moral character, they really should not have any problem getting an LTC- even in big cities like Boston. Many towns issue for all lawful purposes, sometimes universally, and others do apply restrictions (especially in Boston and other parts of eastern Mass). Regardless, getting a license IS doable. Once licensed, Mass is a good state for gun owners despite some of the oenerous laws. There are a lot of great, affordable clubs to join and if your license allows carry- very few places that are statutorily off limits and very few places that post against carry.
Actually from what I've told, getting a CCW permit in many places in Mass is just a matter of doing the proper paperwork- it really is up to the licensing officer's discretion (which can be pretty dooming if you live in Boston or Newton, word is.)

As far as clubs in Mass, the ones I've seen so far were outstanding. I joined the club which did my training course on the spot it was such a sweet deal. (They even delay the start of your annual membership until your license is processed, with no statute of limitation).
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Old August 29, 2014, 06:24 PM   #12
mp510
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Quote:
Actually from what I've told, getting a CCW permit in many places in Mass is just a matter of doing the proper paperwork- it really is up to the licensing officer's discretion (which can be pretty dooming if you live in Boston or Newton, word is.)
That's definetely true. My understanding is that the most commonly issued license in Mass is without restriction. There is a map on NE Shooters that shows the friendliness of various towns.

Boston will issue most people a restricted (hunting/ target) A-LTC, without much fanfare- as long as they meet the requirements and can pass the range qualification. My understanding is that if somebody runs a cash business (or certain types of businesses) getting ALP is pretty uneventful as well.

As I mentioned earlier, I have an A- LTC as a nonresident and the worst part of the process was the time delays- which were related to issues outside of the issuing authority's control (i.e. waiting for responses for record checks).
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