If you are in possession of a regulated firearm before October 1, 2013, you must apply for the HQL (Handgun Qualification License). However, you won't need to undergo the mandatory training component as you are exempt from it. After October 1, 2013, you may not rent, buy, or receive a handgun unless you possess a valid HQL that the Maryland State Police has issued.

What’s HQL Training?

Handgun Qualification License (HQL) training refers to a four-hour instruction block. It includes both classroom and on-field training components. If you plan to enroll in Practical Training Professionals’ HQL classes and training in Central Maryland, near Baltimore, you can expect to learn and train for the following:

The classroom training part will teach you about Maryland’s firearm law pertaining to firearms and self-defense. You will also learn about the diverse varieties of handguns and their parts, the basics of shooting, and disassembly, cleaning, and reassembly of a handgun.


The on-field or hands-on training section will give you the chance to disassemble, clean, and reassemble handguns. You will also learn about the various holster types and practice safe and efficient procedures to draw and reholster your handguns, in addition to shooting more than 50 rounds of ammunition on the range.


You must take HQL training courses approved by the MSP (Maryland State Police). With qualified and experienced handgun instructors of Practical Training Professionals, you can rest assured of being trained the right way and getting your HQL with ease.


It will be wise to remember that your HQL training remains valid for three years. You must complete it before applying for a Handgun Qualification License.


Do I Need an HQL in Maryland?


You are exempt from possessing a Handgun Qualification License if you are:

  • A member or retired member of the United States Armed Forces or National Guard.
  • A Licensed Firearms Manufacturer.
  • An active law enforcement officer or an individual retired on good terms from a law enforcement agency of the nation, the State, or a local law enforcement organization of the State.
  • An individual renting, buying, or getting a curio, an antique, or a relic as outlined in federal law or in determinations issued by the BATFE (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives).

If you belong to any of the above-listed categories, you must provide adequate documents or legitimate credentials to a regulated firearms dealer before buying or transporting a regulated firearm.


For all other Maryland residents, it’s mandatory to possess and present a valid HQL before buying or transporting a regulated firearm.


You will be needed to have a HQL but get an exemption from the training component if you:


  • Are presently a qualified handgun instructor.
  • Have finished a series of lessons and received a Certificate of Competency in Firearms and Hunter Safety from the Maryland DNR (Department of Natural Resources).
  • Have finished an MSP-approved certified firearms safety course.
  • Are an honorably discharged member of the United States Armed Forces or National Guard.
  • Work at an armored car company with a legitimate Wear and Carry Permit issued by the MSP.
  • Are the lawful possessor of a regulated firearm. If you are in possession of a regulated firearm before October 1, 2013, you don’t need to finish the training and may apply for your HQL.


From knowing whether you need to train for your HQL to undergoing the training, applying for your HQL, and finally, getting it, everything is super-easy with the guidance of Practical Training Professionals.

Original Sources: https://www.ptpgun.com/post/hql-classes-and-training-in-central-maryland-near-baltimore