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March 24, 2020 - Information on Firearms Application and Registration System (FARS) during COVID-19

Bridgewater, NJ - All FARS applications will be processed with an expected delay due to the COVID-19 response and recovery. FARS will continue to accept new applications, however it is expected that the background investigations and processing times will be significantly delayed. It is important to note that initial applications will be indefinitely delayed due to the closure of the States contracted fingerprint vendor sites. This portion of the background process will continue as soon as non-essential businesses are allowed to reopen.

The process of delivering the Firearms Purchaser Identification Cards and/or Handgun Purchase Permits may be modified (i.e. mailing permits, pickup from a drop box, etc…) and will be handled on a case by case basis.

The National Instant Criminal Background Check System used by firearms dealers is currently suspended. Handgun Purchase Permits are valid for 90 days and can be extended for an additional 90 days for a total validity period of 180 days. It is possible that Handgun Purchase Permits may expire prior to the end of the COVID-19 response. Handgun Purchase Permits will not be extended past the 180 days from the date of issuance. Exceptions may be made on a case-by-case basis for transactions initiated before Executive Order #107 became effective. The NJSP Firearms Unit and the respective retail firearms dealer will handle those exceptions.

We are providing this information so applicants can make an informed decision on submitting an application in FARS at this time.

If you have any questions regarding firearms ID Cards or permits, please contact Robert Hanlon at

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