Before the CCL Review Board denies a concealed carry license, they will send a letter to the applicant stating which law enforcement agency filed the objection and list the reasons given by that agency. The reasons will usually be a list of misdemeanor convictions or arrests/reports that the agency has on file that did not result in a conviction. The letter will offer you the opportunity to submit a statement and documents that testify in your own behalf showing that you are not a danger to yourself, others, or the public. The letter will also state that you have 15 days to respond, if you need more time, you may request more time.
IF you should find yourself in the position of having to appeal a CCL Board denial in court, you can only present/argue information that was provided to the board, so it is important that you include everything in your response to the board that you might want to present later in court. The following information from fellow members about their experience with the board and with their court appeals may be helpful:
1. It is important that you address each of the reasons listed in the objection, explain in your own words what happened, be truthful. It is a very good idea to go to the objecting law enforcement agency and request a copy of all the records and reports so you can verify if the report is accurate - if it is not accurate, you should state this in your response to the board. It could take several weeks for an agency to provide the information you have requested - be sure to send a request for more time to the review board, if you think you will need it.
2. If you made mistakes in judgement years ago, it's best to admit it, then describe how you learned from those mistakes, how you have matured and are now a responsible citizen. To illustrate being a responsible adult, list your work history, community involvement, any productive activities you are involved in. If you have friends and family who are respected in the community, have them write a signed and notarized statement in your own behalf. This isn't critical but if you have had a troubled past, it could be helpful.
3. IllinoisCarry leadership believes the law enforcement objection and CCL Review Board process is unconstitutional. We are aware that several CCL applicants who appealed a board denial in court have tried to argue the constitutionality of the review board but their argument was not allowed in court because the argument was not first presented to the CCL Review Board. After consulting with our legal team, they advise the following be added to responses to the CCL Review Board's request for a statement from an applicant:
In addition to my denials of the factual allegations and legal conclusions raised by the law enforcement objection, I also object to, and challenge the constitutionality of the objection and review board process. I have met all qualifications for a concealed carry license under the Firearms Concealed Carry Act, and this process denies me the fundamental right to bear arms based solely on a preponderance of evidence, even though I do not have a disqualifying misdemeanor or felony conviction, nor have I been adjudicated to have a mental illness or mental disability. I also challenge the constitutionality of being deprived of the right to bear arms when only allowed to submit a written statement in my defense without being provided the opportunity of a hearing before the board in which I am allowed to present evidence, or to question the board or a representative of the objecting agency. The above-referenced statutes and procedures individually and collectively violate my Second Amendment rights, as well as my right to procedural due process under the Fourteenth Amendment.
Furthermore, I challenge the constitutionality of the objection process on the grounds of my Fourteenth Amendment right to equal protection under the law. There is no uniformity among law enforcement agencies as to what incidents or information may be considered a basis for an objection, which results in unfair disparate treatment among applicants and between various law enforcement agencies, sometimes for the same alleged type of incident. The result is an unfair and unconstitutional denial of the fundamental right to bear arms.
For the above reasons, I challenge the constitutionality, facially and as applied, of 430 ILCS 66/15(a), 20(d), 20(e), and 20(g).