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By BETH ZUMWALT
One of the new laws in Illinois for 2022 is the option for a conceal carry/FOID card combination for gun owners.
The new law streamlines and allows the Illinois State Police the ability to create electronic records, combining the FOID and concealed carry licenses. The new law also offers cardholders the ability to apply for renewal six months before the expiration date, and establishes a professional appeals board.
Currently, a FOID card, which is only required in a handful of states, including Illinois costs $10. A concealed carry license is $150. The FOID is valid for 10 years and the concealed carry, for five years.
According to Illinois State Senator Steve McClure, he doesn’t expect the fees to change and may actually save the gun owner money.
“If a FOID card expires during the term of the concealed carry license, the FOID card is renewed at no cost,” McClure said.”A new license indicating the concealed carry/FOID card will be issued.”
As FOID cards are replaced, new cards will be printed without expiration dates. Whenever a new FOID card is issued, if the cardholder has a valid Conceal Carry License (CCL), the cardholder will be issued a combined FOID and CCL card.
The new law also creates stronger identification factors, like fingerprints, so Illinois State Police can more easily verify the identity of FOID applicants and firearm purchasers, as well as increase the frequency of background checks. It also allows responsible gun owners who opt into this process to see their FOID and Concealed Carry applications expedited and automatically renewed going forward.
The law went in effect Jan. 1. The stronger background check will become effective January, 2024.
When a FOID Card is suspended and the cardholder has a CCL, the CCL will be suspended until the FOID Card is reinstated. Upon reinstatement of the FOID Card, if eligible, the CCL will be reinstated as well.
When a CCL is suspended or revoked but the person is still eligible to possess a FOID card, they will retain the issued combined card, but it will not show a valid CCL in the Law Enforcement Automated Data System (LEADS).
The Illinois State Police, who is asked with the distribution of both FOID cards and concealed carry licenses, believe the new laws will help.
“The ISP welcome the signing of this bill which modernizes FOID and eliminates redundant and duplicative processes that do nothing to improve public safety. This act will help us in our mission to make lawful gun ownership easier for the good guys while keeping guns out of the hands of those who threaten public safety,” said ISP Director Brendan F. Kelly.