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Illinois Doesn’t Age Discriminate for FOID

I’m a big proponent of introducing our children to the shooting sports, so that they learn to use firearms safely and responsibly, and learn what they are capable of. This is the best way to prevent accidents. But how young do you start? Apparently some people in Illinois have an opinion on this:

My 10-month-old son has the cutest FOID card.

Howard David Ludwig — affectionately nicknamed Bubba — received his state-issued Firearm Owner’s Identification Card two weeks ago.

The wallet-size card arrived in the mail about a month after his dear ol’ dad correctly completed the online form and sent the $5 fee.

As a FOID cardholder, baby Bubba can own a firearm and ammunition in Illinois. He can also legally transport an unloaded weapon — though he can’t walk yet, so that’s not an issue.

The plastic card has a picture of a toothless, grinning Bubba in the upper right corner. It includes his name, address and date of birth.

The FOID card lists his height (2 feet, 3 inches), and his weight (20 pounds).

His signature is superimposed at the bottom of the card. Bubba can’t sign his name, so I simply placed a pen in his hand. He made the scribble.

Now, I think it’s probably a good idea to wait until a child is a wee bit older than this before introducing them to shooting, but I can sympathize with a stay at home dad that develops a curiosity about whether the state would issue his infant son an FIOD card, and the giddy amusement when you find out the answer is yes.

Hey folks, we don’t make the laws, but we reserve the right to laugh at them.

But why would the state police issue a FOID card to anyone younger than 18?

I called the state police, who said they followed the law as it’s written.

“There is nothing in the FOID Act or any of the rules that says anything about age restrictions,” said Lt. Scott Compton, of the Illinois State Police.

The state doesn’t track FOID cards based on age. However, Compton admitted it’s a rare occasion when anyone younger than 18 would need a FOID card. Say a group of 15-year-old boys wants to go hunting rabbits unsupervised. If their parents approve the hunt, then the boys would need FOID cards, Compton said.

I’m not about to approve any unsupervised hunting or trap shooting for Bubba. Still, I’m glad he was able to get his FOID card.

It makes an adorable addition to his baby book.

Pennsylvania doesn’t require licensing for owners, but if I lived in IL, I’d have to be sure to get my kid his very own FOID card. Can’t have Junior getting jealous of the other kids ;)

4 Responses to “Illinois Doesn’t Age Discriminate for FOID”

  1. Bitter says:

    Honey, we’d be fighting over who gets to fill out the gun application and who gets stuck with the birth certificate. :P

    On an only slightly more serious note, we would have one goal to achieve: Timing it so the kid would get the award for the youngest life member at the NRA meeting.

  2. Alcibiades says:

    Online FOID?! NJ could only dream! (Or dream about not having one at all, but…)

    Does the Illinois FOID cover Airsoft guns?

  3. Sebastian says:

    I think NJ is the only state that regulates air guns as firearms. I could be mistaken though.

  4. IIRC, you have to have a FOID just to buy ammo.

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