Learn about the new age eligibility for permanent licenses taking effect in 2017.
What is a permanent license?
A permanent license allows the holder to hunt and fish without purchasing additional licenses for the rest of their lifetime. Vermont's permanent license includes all regular season tags, including archery, muzzleloader, and turkey tags. An additional tag for second archery, moose and antlerless lotteries, and waterfowl stamps must be purchased separately. Permanent licenses must be renewed every year, free of charge.
Permanent licenses are different from lifetime licenses, which can be purchased at any age and are generally purchased for young children.
What changes have been made with permanent licenses?
Until December 31, 2016, a permanent hunting and fishing license is available to Vermont residents aged 65 and older for a one-time fee of $50. Starting January 1, the eligible age will be raised to 70 and the license will be free.
What should I do if I already have a permanent license?
This change will not affect you. You will retain your permanent license privileges. You will still need to renew your permanent license every year, which can be done free of charge online or at a Fish & Wildlife Department district office. You can also renew your permanent license at any license agent statewide for a nominal fee.
What should I do if I'm aged 65 to 68 and don't yet have a permanent license?
Hunters and anglers aged 65 to 68 who have purchased a regular hunting or combination or fishing license in 2016, and are eligible to purchase a 2016 Permanent License on or before midnight on December 31, 2016, should do so. Eligible current 2016 license holders can ONLY purchase a permanent license in person at a license agent or Fish & Wildlife Department district office. If you are eligible for a permanent license and have not purchased any 2016 licenses, you can purchase a permanent license in person at a license agent or a F&W district office or go online.
What should I do if I am going to turn 70 in 2017?
Those without a permanent license who will turn 70 before the next hunting or fishing season should wait until their 70th birthday to pick up a 2017 permanent license, at which time it will be available to them for free.
Why were these changes made?
The changes were made by legislature to bring Vermont's permanent license structures in line with neighboring states. In New York and Massachusetts, hunters and anglers are eligible for a permanent license at age 70. New Hampshire does not offer a permanent license, but instead offers a discount on annual licenses starting at age 68.
The change was also made to account for increased life expectancy. The eligible age of a permanent license holder has been age 65 since 1971. Since that time, the life expectancy in the United States has increased by 8 years.
Where can I get more information about these changes?
Anyone with questions about the change should call the licensing office at 802-828-1190.