Lethal Weapons Training Program

Frequently Asked Questions



  • Are fees refundable?
    Application (basic and renewal) and fingerprint processing fees are NON-REFUNDABLE regardless of the decision on eligibility to include waivers from training and exemptions based on retirement or current municipal police officer employment status.

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  • How long will it take to get my card?
     Once we receive the grades from the school, your card will be sent out in the next group of cards to be processed.


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  • How do I know the status of my 235 application?
    The average processing time can range from 8-12 weeks after all documents arrive in the office for reviewYou can confirm that all documents have arrived by using the online services option on this website.

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  • Will the process be quicker if I hand-deliver my application.
    Hand-delivery does not speed up the processing time of an application.  Applications are processed in the order in which they are received. 

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  • Am I eligible for a waiver of training?
     Active, full-time municipal police officers are eligible for a waiver of the academic and firearms training, and may request such a waiver. A graduate of the Act 120 basic police training course if completed within the 5 year period prior to your application for Act 235 certification, may request a waiver of the academic training.  As an Act 120 training program graduate, if firearms training was completed no more than twelve months prior to your application for Act 235 certification, you are eligible to request a waiver of the firearms training.

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  • Are there any waivers for out of state training?
     No.

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  • What are the fees I must pay?
    Basic applicants must submit a money order for $77.50 payable to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania unless they are full time police officers then the fee is $27.50.  Upon approval, applicants must pay a $30 certification fee by money order payable to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.  Renewal applicants must submit a $30 renewal fee in a money order payable to the Pennsylvania State Police.


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  • Do you accept personal checks?
     No. All payments must be made in the form of money order, cashier or certified check only. No personal checks will be accepted.


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  • Once my card expires can I renew it?
     No. Once your card expires it can no longer be renewed. You must complete the application process just like you did the first time; including a new physical and psychological exam, new fingerprint cards, photos and take the 40 hour basic course.


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  • How long is the Lethal Weapons course?
     
    The basic course is 40 hours; the renewal course is 8 hours.

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  • When is the next 235 class; and how much does it cost?
     Call whichever school you are planning on attending for details on times and cost of the course.


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  • How long is my paperwork good for?
     Your application is valid for one year; physical and psychological exams are valid for 6 months.


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  • Can I get an extension on my card?
     
    There is no extension on the 235 card. If your card is expiring and you submit the renewal paperwork before it expires; you will have 6 months to take the renewal training. That does not extend the time of your card; it only allows you to take the renewal training.


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  • Can I work out of state with my 235 card?
     No. The Act 235 card is only valid in Pennsylvania.

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  • How long after a police officer retires can he/she apply for a waiver?
    Police officers who retire in good standing after 20 years of service with a municipal police department or Pennsylvania State Police may apply for a waiver/exemption for up to 3 years following retirement. Within that time they are eligible for a waiver of training, exempt from the physical and psychological exams and the application fee. After 3 years, the retired officer must complete the entire application process.  Complete details are found at the Certification Procedures link accessed on the home page.

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  • Can I apply for Act 235 if I live out-of-state?
     Yes. If you are working in Pennsylvania but live out-of-state you may still apply for the Act 235 card.

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  • When will I receive my renewal application?
     You will receive your renewal application in the mail 8 months before your card expires.

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  • Who is eligible for waivers of training when renewing their certification?
     
    Only full-time municipal police officers' are eligible for waivers of training when renewing their certification. Retired police officers are required to take the 8 hour renewal course.


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  • What forms must police officers fill out when applying for Act 235 certification?
     
    Full-time police officers applying for basic certification must submit the basic application for agent certification (SP8-200); the Municipal Police Officer Waiver of Training Verification Form (SP8-204); and the Police Officer Exemption Application (SP8-200 C). Both the waiver and exemption form must be signed by the Chief of Police. Officers hired after 1974 must also submit a copy of the physical and psychological exams they had as a prerequisite of employment at their current police department. If one is not available, a letter from the Chief stating both were completed upon employment is acceptable. Full-Time police officers who are renewing their 235 certification must submit the Application for Renewal of Agent Certification (SP8-205) along with the Municipal Police Officer Waiver of Training Verification Form (SP8-204).


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  • "If I am the Chief of Police," who should sign the waiver forms?
     If the Chief of Police is submitting an application and waiver forms, they should be signed by the mayor or Head of the Political Subdivision.

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  • Do I need to log into the site to access its information?
     No, general site information is available without being logged in. A special login is required for specific purposes.

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