Who can get one?
U.S. Citizens and residents of Massachusetts
Parental consent is needed if the child is under 17 years old.
U.S. Citizens and non-residents of Massachusetts who:
1. Temporarily reside in any coastal city or town of Massachusetts and
2. Own more than $5,000 in real estate within Massachusetts as determined by tax records.
Non-U.S. Citizens who are not residents of Massachusetts shall:
1. Provide a copy of the alien registration receipt card issued by the U.S. Dept. of Justice, Immigration and Naturalization Service to the applicant and
2. Temporarily reside in any coastal city or town of Massachusetts and
3. Own more than $5,000 in real estate within Massachusetts as determined by tax records.
Non-U.S. Citizens who are residents
of Massachusetts shall:
Provide a copy of applicant’s alien registration receipt card issued by the U.S. Dept. of Justice, Immigration and Naturalization Service.
What does it cost?
$55 for residents of Massachusetts.
$75 for all non-residents.
Can I sell my lobsters?
No. A Recreational Lobster/Crabbing Permit DOES NOT allow you to sell your catch. You must obtain a Commercial Lobster/Crabbing Permit if you wish to sell your catch.
Where can I get a permit?
You can purchase a Recreational Lobster/Crabbing Permit at any MA Division of Marine Fisheries business office.
If you are a Massachusetts resident
you may purchase/renew your
Permit online (certain restrictions apply)
Please visit: www.mass.gov/marinefisheries and follow the step by step instructions for purchasing a Recreational Lobster/Crabbing Permit.
How many lobsters and crabs can I take?
There is a limit of 15 lobsters per day per permit, and all lobsters must meet the legal requirements. There is a limit of 25 blue crabs per day and a limit of 50 crabs per day total for all edible crab species combined.
Who can use the permit?
A Recreational Lobster/Crabbing Permit authorizes the holder and members of the holder’s immediate family, residing in the same residence, to fish for and take lobsters and edible crabs using up to 10 pots. The immediate family is defined as the spouse, parents, children, grandparents, brothers, and sisters of the holder.
This permit may be endorsed for diving for the permit holder only. Other family members may purchase additional permits for diving.
Only ONE Recreational Lobster/Crabbing permit endorsed for 10 pots is allowed per family/household.
Can I dive and use pots with
When you purchase your Recreational Lobster/Crabbing Permit you must specify if you want it endorsed for the use of 10 pots or for diving. Your permit can be endorsed for both practices if you prefer.
Where can traps be set?
No buoyed traps may be set in the Cape Cod Canal. New Bedford Harbor is closed to lobster harvest north of a line from Ricketson’s Point (Dartmouth) to Wilbur Point (Fairhaven).
Is reporting required?
Annual catch reports are required of all Recreational Lobster/Crabbing Permit holders. These forms are provided by Division of Marine Fisheries (MarineFisheries) at the time of renewal. Renewal licenses will not be issued until a catch report has been filed.
Do I need the permit if I intend
to take only crabs by hand
No, you are exempt.
Regulations in red are new this year.
Purple text indicates an important note.