The police grant permits for acquiring and possessing firearms and firearm components. Submit you firearm permit application to a police department. Permits for acquiring and possessing firearms and gas sprays can also be granted to organisations and foundations that are registered in Finland or that provide a public service.
Permits for acquiring and possessing firearms and firearm components can only be granted to applicants who can demonstrate an acceptable purpose of use. Applicants must also meet the conditions for permit holders.
With some exceptions, applications are submitted verbally. An officer at the police department will enter your application in the firearms database. However, you must provide the grounds for your application in writing.
To apply for a firearm permit, you need to bring your:
- passport or identity card. You can submit your application even if you don’t have these with you. However, as the police department will have to verify your identity, your appointment will take longer.
- grounds for your application in writing, and any other documents needed to support your application
- military passport, civilian service certificate, conscription certificate or a certificate showing that you are exempt from military service
- documents justifying the purpose for which you intend to use the firearm
Firearm permit interviews
The police may invite you to an interview before granting you a permit. You will be invited to an interview if:
- you are applying for your first firearm permit
- more than ten years have elapsed since the previous permit was granted
- you are the guardian of an applicant for a parallel permit and the applicant has reached 15 but not 18 years and you are applying for a permit for the storage and transport of a firearm
- you are under 18 years of age
You will also be invited to an interview if something emerges during the processing of the permit that suggests that you may be unsuitable to possess firearms (such as violence, intoxicants or health reasons).
As a rule, applicants who are applying for their first handgun permit will be interviewed. Exceptions to this general rule may be made on special grounds, for example if a person who has been hunting for a long time and is of good repute applies for a firearm for putting down the animal when hunting with traps or catching animals below ground.
As a rule, firearm acquisition permits are valid for a period of one year. On special grounds, the permit may be extended to a maximum of two years. You must present your firearm or firearm component at the police department within 30 days of the acquisition, and in any case before the expiry of the acquisition permit.
Conditions for firearm permit holders
You may be granted a permit to acquire a firearm if you are:
- at least 18 years
- considered fit to possess a firearm or a firearm component based on your health and behaviour
For example, a criminal past or substance abuse may be an obstacle to obtaining a permit.
However, you can only obtain a firearm permit for acquiring a pistol, a small-calibre pistol, a revolver or a small-calibre revolver or a component for one after you have reached the age of 20.
If you have in your possession an unlicensed firearm, component of a firearm, cartridges or particularly dangerous projectiles, their possession does not prevent you from obtaining of a firearm permit if you report and hand them over to the police on your own initiative.