If you enjoy outdoor sports, like hunting and fishing, North Carolina is an excellent state for these activities! However, there are regulations related to hunting and fishing in place, including licensing. To help you enjoy your favorite activities legally, we are sharing how to obtain a hunting license, including who is eligible or ineligible and what your license covers.
Who Needs a Hunting License in North Carolina?
All residents over the age of 16 need a license when hunting on game lands with two exceptions.
- A landowner or person leasing land used for cultivating crops can hunt, trap, or fish on their land without a license, as can their spouse and any dependents under the age of 18 who live with them.
- A member of the U.S. Armed Forces who is serving outside the state can fish or hunt in-state if they are on leave. However, they will need their military ID and a copy of the official document stating they are on leave.
Annual hunting licenses are only good for 12 months from the date of purchase, though lifetime licenses are also available for residents. In addition to the standard hunting license, if you plan on hunting large game, such as bear or waterfowl, you will need a special license for these activities.
For people living outside North Carolina, non-resident licenses are available. They do not include allowances for big game hunting or hunting waterfowl.
What Are the Requirements to Get a License for Hunting?
If you want to obtain either an annual license or a lifetime license, you need to complete an approved hunter education course and pass the test. Proof will be provided with a certification card that you will need to carry with you at all times.
There are exceptions to taking a hunter education course, including making sure to hunt with a properly licensed adult and stay within sight and hearing distance. Also, anyone who was issued a North Carolina hunting license prior to July 1, 2013 does not need to obtain a hunting education certificate.
Who Can’t Get a Hunting License in NC?
In North Carolina, there are few obstacles to obtaining your hunting license. However, the problem many hunters face is having lost their right to carry or own a gun, even if the gun would only be used for hunting. You are prohibited from carrying a gun if you are:
- A convicted felon
- Found guilty of certain violent crimes, including domestic violence
- Ruled by the court as being mentally ill
- Under indictment or free on bond and awaiting trial or sentencing for a crime that would bar you from carrying a gun
If you have been convicted of a crime and are not legally allowed to hunt or have a gun, you’ll need to connect with an attorney who works on gun rights restoration cases. At Kirk, Kirk, Howell, Cutler, and Thomas, we work with people around the Triangle to get their gun rights reinstated, helping them navigate the difficult legal issues that keep them from hunting or protecting their property.
Call Us to Get Your Hunting and Gun Rights Restored in Raleigh
If you’re unable to get a hunting license or you want to get your gun rights restored, reach out to our lawyers in Raleigh today to learn more. Schedule a consultation today by filling out the form below to get started. Or, reach out to us at 919-615-2473 for our Raleigh office or at 919-365-6000 to reach our Wendell office.
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