Illinois knows they done goofed. Even with a fairly hostile view on the 2A pervading in Chicagostan, because of course it’s the pro-2A crowd and their responsible gun ownership causing the issues, the fact that a government mandated process has fallen so far behind is a problem.
It is a losing lawsuits and losing a bunch of money type of problem. It is a ‘get the FOID card declared unconstitutional’ type of problem. Of course the FOID is a violation, but the courts are much more likely to agree with that statement if the FOID cannot be acquired in a reasonable timeframe.
Illinois would have a very strong basis for the FOID being very minimally impactful on firearm ownership if most of the FOID processes were same day or at the most a week, maybe two. But a backlog of months, no structure to handle renewals when low contact procedures are in place, making people wait… and wait… and wait. Now the FOID, following the law and being ‘good’ gun owners, is an enormous burden (which is the point) and the state isn’t holding up their end.
So, Illinois is doing the following to get back further from the edge of getting the FOID smashed in court.
As Firearm Owners Identification cards are replaced in 2022, new cards will be printed without expiration dates. When a new FOID card is issued, if the cardholder has a concealed carry license, they will be issued a combined FOID card and CCL.
In addition, when FOID cards are suspended, if the cardholder has a concealed carry license, the CCL will be suspended until the FOID card is reinstated. When the FOID card is reinstated, the CCL also will be reinstated.
When a CCL is suspended or revoked, but a person is still eligible to keep their FOID card, they will be able to retain their combined FOID/CCL, but the state’s Law Enforcement Automated Data System will show the CCL has been suspended or revoked.
When a FOID card expires while a CCL is still valid, the FOID card will be automatically renewed without having to pay a renewal fee, and the license holder will be sent a new combined FOID card and CCL without an expiration date printed on the card. –CBS2
Note that FOID’s still expire, they just won’t have an expiration date. Keeping your CCL current auto renewing the FOID seems like a prudent step, as the CCL has a higher set of requirements.
All in all, this feels like a, ‘sorry, we got caught not doing our jobs and putting you at risk of criminal prosecution *shrug*’ but there are some positive developments, not the least of which is increased automation for faster processing times.