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License Exemptions

The following are exempt from license requirements:

  • Residents or nonresidents participating in a DNR-licensed field trial.
  • Resident owners of Indiana farmland or lessees of Indiana farmland who farm that land, their spouses and children living with them, while hunting, fishing or trapping on the farmland they own or lease. This exemption does not apply to land owned by a business, corporation or partnership unless the shareholders, partners, members or owners are comprised solely of the members of an immediate family and farm that land.

Farmland means agricultural land that is devoted or best adaptable to the production of crops, fruits, timber or the raising of livestock, or is assessed as agricultural land for property tax purposes.

  • Trustees and named trust beneficiaries comprised solely of the members of an immediate family when hunting on the trust property (as defined in Indiana Code 30-4-1-2).
  • Residents of Indiana engaged in full-time military service and who are carrying their leave orders and a valid Indiana driver’s license or Indiana voter registration card.
  • Youth participating in free youth hunting weekends.

The following nonresidents can hunt with a resident license:

  • A nonresident younger than 18 years old may hunt, trap or fish with a resident license if a parent, grandparent or legal guardian is an Indiana resident.
  • Nonresident military personnel on active duty and stationed in Indiana may hunt or fish with a resident license.

Indiana allows non-resident landowners, including their spouse and children living with them, to hunt, fish or trap on their own farmland in Indiana without a hunting license only if the following conditions are met:

  1. The nonresident’s state allows the same exemption for the same species for Indiana residents who own farmland in that state*;
  2. While hunting, fishing, or trapping on the farmland, the nonresident must keep proof of ownership (for example, a tax receipt identifying the nonresident as owner) in a place where the proof is readily accessible by the nonresident.

* For example, if a nonresident is from state X that only allows Indiana residents who own land in that state an exemption to hunt small game on land they own without a license, then the same exemption would apply in Indiana for a nonresident who owns Indiana farmland and is hunting small game on that farmland. If state X does not include other species (e.g., deer, turkey) in the exemption, then the nonresident must have and carry a valid nonresident license and any applicable stamp privileges to hunt those species in Indiana.

This exemption does not apply to land owned by a business, corporation or partnership unless the shareholders, partners, members or owners are comprised solely of the members of an immediate family and farm that land.

Nonresidents who lease land in Indiana are not exempt and must purchase nonresident licenses.

Nonresident Private Shooting Preserve

Nonresidents must purchase a nonresident shooting preserve license and any applicable stamp privilege requirements for species they are hunting at a private shooting preserve. The nonresident private shooting preserve license expires April 30, immediately following the date the license is effective. The nonresident shooting preserve license is $17 and the nonresident youth shooting preserve license is $7.

Persons with Disabilities

Individuals with a disability that prevents them from being able to hunt wild animals under regular hunting regulations may request a special permit from the DNR.

Special permits may allow those who cannot walk or have serious walking limitations to hunt from a vehicle or gain special vehicle access on public property.

For rules or application forms, contact the Division of Fish and Wildlife, 402 W. Washington St., W273, Indianapolis, IN 46204; (317) 232-4102 or at

Individuals with certain permanent developmental disabilities as defined in state law may apply for a conditional hunter education card. The individual must first take the hunter education class. Call DNR Law Enforcement at (317) 232-4011 for more information.

A disability is defined as a physical impairment resulting from injury or disease, excluding impairment due to the normal aging process.

Apprentice Licenses

A resident or nonresident can buy an apprentice hunting license without having to take a hunter education class. An individual can purchase up to three apprentice hunting licenses, of any combination, in his/her lifetime before needing to take a DNR-offered hunter education class.

While hunting, the apprentice hunter at all times must be in close proximity to and able to communicate with a hunter who is at least 18 years old and has a valid hunting license (unless exempt from needing a hunting license). The individual who accompanies the apprentice hunter cannot accompany more than two apprentice hunters at one time while afield.

The apprentice resident youth hunt/trap license includes the same licenses and stamps as the regular resident youth hunt/trap license; it only exempts the license holder from needing to take a hunter education class.

Landowners or lessees of farmland and their children living with them who meet the requirements for license exemptions listed on above also are exempt from needing an apprentice hunting license.

Hunter Education

Anyone born after Dec. 31, 1986 must successfully complete a DNR-offered hunter education class to purchase a hunting license. See apprentice license exception. Hunters certified in another state or Canada can also present a card or certificate and purchase an Indiana hunting license.

The DNR offers hunter education courses in counties throughout the state. The program takes approximately 10 hours to complete. For information on classes in your area, see or contact the nearest hunter education office:

Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

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