HMICS Launches Online Questionnaire About Firearms Licensing in Scotland

HM Inspectorate of Constabulary in Scotland has wide ranging powers under the Police and Fire Reform (Scotland) Act 2012 to look into the state, effectiveness and efficiency of Police Scotland and the Scottish Police Authority. In Autumn 2017, they will be assessing Police Scotland’s arrangements for the licensing of firearms, shotguns and air weapons. Their inspection will seek to ensure that Police Scotland’s licensing arrangements protect the public while also providing an effective service to individual certificate holders and applicants.

They will assess the efficiency and effectiveness of those licensing arrangements and welcome the views of those who have applied for a certificate or had an existing certificate renewed or varied in the last two years. They also welcome the views of those who have sponsored an application for a visitor’s permit. In 2015, Police Scotland introduced new internal arrangements for its firearms licensing service. HMICS are interested to hear whether service users have noticed any change in the efficiency or quality of the service provided since then.

To help them assess the licensing service provided by Police Scotland, they would like to hear more about the views and experiences of certificate holders and applicants. An online questionnaire has been launched by HMICS to allow members of the public who have applied in the last two years to Police Scotland for a firearm, shotgun or air weapon certificate to comment on the licensing process.

The questionnaire should take no longer than 10 minutes to complete. The deadline for responses is FRIDAY 3 NOVEMBER 2017.

The information received will be used to inform the HMICS inspection which will be carried out during Autumn 2017. A report of the inspection will be published in Winter 2017.

The responses to the online questionnaire will be anonymous and because of this, HMICS will not be able to provide individual feedback.

Complete the Questionnaire

If you would like this online questionnaire in an alternative language, please contact

Please note that HMICS is unable to investigate any specific complaints you may have about Police Scotland’s firearms licensing service. Should you have a complaint, please refer to the Police Scotland website at How to Make a Complaint.