Firearms & HUNTER Safety Frequently Asked Questions

For more information on the firearms safety courses we offer, or for more information on the process in general, read this FAQ.

If you have any further questions, don't hesitate to contact us.


How do I register for a Firearms Safety or Hunter Education course?

  • For more information on registering for a specific course, click the course title on the menu on this page.

Which course do I need to take to own or buy a rifle or shotgun?

  • You need to successfully complete the Canadian Non-Restricted Firearms Safety Course in order to apply for your Possession & Acquisition Licence.

Which course do I need to take to own or buy a handgun?

  • You need to successfully complete the Canadian Non-Restricted Firearms Safety Course and the Canadian Restricted Firearms Safety Course in order to apply for your Possession & Acquisition Licence with a Restricted certification.

How do I get a Possession & Acquisition Licence (PAL) card?

  • You first need to successfully complete the Canadian Non-Restricted Firearms Safety Course (and the Canadian Restricted Firearms Safety Course if you want to own a handgun). On completion, you will receive an official student record, as well as information on how to apply for a PAL card. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) are responsible for issuing and considering all licence applications.

Can Safety Services Nova Scotia issue my a licence?

  • No. Safety Services Nova Scotia offers in-classroom courses on firearms safety and hunter education only. The RCMP is responsible for issuing licences.


Can anyone buy ammunition?

  • No. You must have a valid Possession & Acquisition Licence (PAL) to purchase ammunition.


Why do I need the Hunter Education course?

  • When applying for your Wildlife Resources Card to the Department of Natural Resources, you will need to prove successful completion of the Hunter Education Course, as well as the Canadian Non-Restricted Firearms Course.


Can I take any of these courses online?

  • If you are 14 years of age or older, you may take the Hunter Education course online. Safety Services Nova Scotia does not offer this course online.

    Neither the Canadian Non-Restricted Firearms Safety Course or the Canadian Restricted Firearms Safety Course may be taken online. Both require a practical examination of your abilities by an authorized instructor.


How may someone who cannot read/write take one of the courses?

Even though a Student Handbook is provided, the courses are still verbally taught. Also, at the start of the course, you can tell the instructor you wish to take the written examination verbally.

If you have difficulties, you may contact our office at +1 902 454 9621.


What can I do if I am not able to register online or if I don’t feel comfortable registering online?

  • While we try to encourage everyone to register for their courses using the online portal, you may call or drop in to our office during regular office hours listed on this site.

    Our phone number is +1 902 454 9621, or toll-free at +1 888 511 2211.

    Our address is 201 Brownlow Avenue, Unit 1, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.


WHAT do i do if I have a complaint or want to address a concern?

  • We encourage anyone with a complaint, concern or question to contact us immediately at  +1 902 454 9621, or email FASafetyComplaints@safetyservicesns.ca to have us address complaints or issues. You may also click below to send us a complaint or message through this website. Your contact information is not required and you may notify us of any issues anonymously. However, if you wish for us to follow up with you regarding your complaint, you must leave your name and a phone number or email address so that we may contact you.
    Note: All contact is subject to our Privacy Policy.


Further Questions or Additional Assistance

If you have further questions or concerns regarding our Firearms Safety or Hunter Education course offerings, please contact us at FAReg@safetyservicesns.ca