(a)(1)a. The sheriff of a county, upon the application of any person residing in that county, within 30 days from receipt of a complete application and accompanying fee, shall issue or renew a permit for such person to carry a pistol in a vehicle or concealed on or about his or her person within this state for one- to five-year increments, as requested by the person seeking the permit, from date of issue, unless the sheriff determines that the person is prohibited from the possession of a pistol or firearm pursuant to state or federal law, or has a reasonable suspicion that the person may use a weapon unlawfully or in such other manner that would endanger the person's self or others. In making such determination, the sheriff may consider whether the applicant:
1. Was found guilty but mentally ill in a criminal case.
2. Was found not guilty in a criminal case by reason of insanity or mental disease or defect.
3. Was declared incompetent to stand trial in a criminal case.
4. Asserted a defense in a criminal case of not guilty by reason of insanity or mental disease or defect.
5. Was found not guilty only by reason of lack of mental responsibility under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
6. Required involuntary inpatient treatment in a psychiatric hospital or similar treatment facility.
7. Required involuntary outpatient treatment in a psychiatric hospital or similar treatment facility based on a finding that the person is an imminent danger to himself or herself or to others.
8. Required involuntary commitment to a psychiatric hospital or similar treatment facility for any reason, including drug use.
9. Is or was the subject of a prosecution or of a commitment or incompetency proceeding that could lead to a prohibition on the receipt or possession of a firearm under the laws of Alabama or the United States.
10. Falsified any portion of the permit application.
11. Caused justifiable concern for public safety.
b. The sheriff shall take into account how recent any consideration under paragraph a. is in relation to the date of the application. The sheriff shall provide a written statement of the reasons for a denial of a permit and the evidence upon which it is based must be disclosed to the applicant, unless disclosure would interfere with a criminal investigation.
c. Except as otherwise provided by the laws of this state, a permit issued under this subdivision is valid throughout the state.
d. Except as expressly provided in this section, a sheriff may not place conditions or requirements on the issuance of a pistol permit or limit its scope or applicability.
(2)a. The sheriff may revoke a permit issued under subdivision (1) for any reason that could lead to a denial of a permit under that subdivision.
b. The sheriff shall provide a written statement of the reasons for the revocation and the evidence upon which it is based must be disclosed to the applicant, unless disclosure would interfere with a criminal investigation.
(3) A person who is denied a permit under subdivision (1), or a person whose permit is revoked under subdivision (2), within 30 days of notification of the denial or revocation, may appeal the denial or revocation to the district court of the county where the denial or revocation was issued. Upon a review of a denial under this subdivision, the sheriff shall have the burden of proving by clear and convincing evidence that the person is prohibited from possession of a pistol or other firearm pursuant to state or federal law or, based on any of the considerations enumerated in subsection (a)(1) that the person may use a weapon unlawfully or in such other manner as would endanger the person's self or others if granted a permit to carry a concealed weapon under this section.
(4) Within 30 days of receipt of the appeal, the district court shall review the appeal and issue a determination providing the reasons for the determination.
(5) If the district court issues a determination in favor of a person whose permit was denied or revoked, the person shall be issued a permit or the permit must be reinstated.
(6) Nothing in this section shall be construed to permit a sheriff to disregard any federal law or regulation pertaining to the purchase or possession of a firearm.
(b) Each permit shall be written or in an electronic or digital form to be prescribed by the Secretary of State in consultation with the Alabama Sheriff's Association, and shall bear the name, address, description, and signature of the permittee. The original hardcopy of the permit shall be issued to the permittee, and a duplicate shall, within seven days, be sent by registered or certified mail to the Secretary of the Alabama State Law Enforcement Agency. The application and a copy shall be preserved for six years by the authority issuing the same. The sheriff may charge a fee as provided by local law for the issuance of the permit under subdivision (1) of subsection (a). The amount of the fee for a period of one year up to five years shall be the amount of the fee as prescribed by local law multiplied by the number of years of the permit requested by the applicant. The fee shall be paid into the county treasury unless otherwise provided by local law. Prior to issuance or renewal of a permit, the sheriff shall contact available local, state, and federal criminal history data banks, including the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, to determine whether possession of a firearm by an applicant would be a violation of state or federal law.
(c) A sheriff may not place a time constraint or other requirement upon the taking possession of a pistol permit by the applicant after he or she has been notified that his or her pistol permit has been approved.
(d) For the convenience of the applicant, the sheriff may provide for application or renewal of a permit under subdivision (1) of subsection (a) through electronic means. The sheriff may also accept payment for a permit by debit or credit card or other consumer electronic payment method. Any transaction or banking fee charged for the electronic payment method shall be paid by the applicant.
(e) If a person who is not a United States citizen applies for a permit under this section, the sheriff shall conduct an Immigration Alien Query through U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or any successor agency, and the application form shall require information relating to the applicant's country of citizenship, place of birth, and any alien or admission number issued by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or any successor agency. The sheriff shall review the results of these inquiries before making a determination of whether to issue a permit or renewal permit. A person who is unlawfully present in this state may not be issued a permit under this section.
(f) The name, address, signature, photograph, and any other personally identifying information collected from an applicant or permittee under this section shall be kept confidential, shall be exempt from disclosure under Section 36-12-40 , and may only be used for law enforcement purposes except when a current permittee is charged in any state with a felony involving the use of a pistol. All other information on permits under this section, including information concerning the annual number of applicants, number of permits issued, number of permits denied or revoked, revenue from issuance of permits, and any other fiscal or statistical data otherwise, shall remain public writings subject to public disclosure. Except as provided above, the sheriff of a county shall redact the name, address, signature, photograph, and any other personally identifying information of a permit holder before releasing a copy of a permit for a non-law enforcement purpose. The sheriff may charge one dollar ($1) per copy of any redacted permit record requested other than when requested for law enforcement purposes. To knowingly publish or release to the public in any form any information or records related to the licensing process, or the current validity of any permit, except as authorized in this subsection or in response to a court order or subpoena, is a Class A misdemeanor.
(g) A concealed pistol permit issued under this section shall be valid for the carrying of a pistol in a motor vehicle or concealed on the permittee's person throughout the state, unless prohibited by this section.
(h) This section shall not be construed to limit or place any conditions upon a person's right to carry a pistol that is not in a motor vehicle or not concealed.
(i) If a person issued a pistol permit in this state establishes residence in another state, the pistol permit shall expire upon the establishment of residence in the other state.
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