The Wake County Sheriffs Department has begun taking online applications for pistol purchase permits for Wake County, NC residents. The new online application system saves permit applicants from having to make two trips downtown to the Sheriffs Department to apply for, and later pick up a pistol purchase permit. Under the new system, an applicant can apply and pay for the permit online, and then pick it up from the Sheriffs Department when it is ready.
At the time of this posting, the current processing time for the online permits is 30 days, which is a little longer than applying for the permit in person, but saves a trip downtown.
Per North Carolina General Statute 14-402, a pistol purchase permit or concealed handgun permit is required for all (non-law enforcement) handgun purchases.