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Tennessee

Fishing

License Information

Thank you for buying a hunting and fishing license. 100% of your license dollars go to support wildlife conservation in Tennessee. Your license is an investment that also returns your federal excise taxes paid on hunting and fishing equipment to TWRA to support wildlife. Without you, Tennessee would not have the abundance of fish and wildlife that we all enjoy.

Fishing licenses go on sale February 18 each year and are valid through the last day of February of the following year. Most license types may be purchased at License Agents located at some County Clerk offices, sporting good stores, hardware stores, and boat docks. All licenses can be purchased at TWRA regional offices. Also, many licenses can be purchased remotely using four methods:

Online: Log on to www.gooutdoorstennessee.com.

Mobile App: Visit gotwra.org to download the free app. It can be used to purchase most license types. No license will be mailed.

* A collectible hard card license may be purchased for an additional $5.00.

US mail: Send your name, address (including zip code), social security number, date of birth, physical features (height, weight, eye and hair color), and enclose the correct fee to: TWRA Sales Office, P.O. Box 41729, Nashville, TN 37204-1729.

License Agents: You can also purchase your hunting and fishing licenses from any of our License Agent locations in Tennessee.

All license and permit fees are subject to change.

All expire at midnight of last effective date.

Native Tennessean

Nonresidents who were born in Tennessee may apply for Native Tennessean annual licenses. These licenses provide nonresidents born in the state but no longer residing in the state, the opportunity to purchase annual Tennessee hunting/fishing/trapping licenses at the same cost as residents. Available by application only. Details and application available online at www.tnwildlife.org.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

A valid fishing license obtained from the state of Tennessee or the state of North Carolina is required and honored throughout the park for all persons 13 years of age and older. A Tennessee trout license is not required. The National Park Service sets fishing regulations within the park. For detailed fishing information, contact:

Park Headquarters

Gatlinburg, TN 37738

(865) 436-1200

https://www.nps.gov/grsm/index.htm

Who must have a Tennessee license?

If you take, or attempt to take fish (including crayfish and salamanders) by any method or if you assist someone else to do so, you must have a valid fishing license. There are some exceptions:

  • If you are under 13 years of age (resident or nonresident).
  • Landowners, their spouses and children, who fish on their farm land which is owned by an individual or a family. Landowners, their spouses and children must be residents of Tennessee but need not reside on the land.
  • Tenants, their spouses and dependent children who fish on farm land owned by an individual or a family. Tenants, their spouses and dependent children must be residents of Tennessee and must actually reside on the land and have permission of the landowner to fish. A tenant is a person who, for money, free rent, or other consideration, cares for farmland. The tenancy must be agricultural in nature.
  • Resident grandchildren (under 16) and resident great-grandchildren (under 16) who fish on farm land which is owned by their resident grandparents or great-grandparents.
  • First cousins who own farmland jointly or in common may fish on the farmland. Their children may fish as well.
  • You are on military leave, carrying a copy of your leave orders. A pass does not meet this requirement.
  • You are a resident who was born before March 1, 1926. (To qualify for this exemption, you must carry proof of your age and residency to show to a wildlife officer, if requested.)
  • It’s Free Fishing Day! This year it falls on June 12th, 2021 (see General Information).
  • It’s Free Fishing Week! All children, ages 15 and younger can fish free between June 12–18 inclusive (see General Information).

NOTE: Giving false information to obtain a license is a misdemeanor punishable by fine and loss of license. Licenses are not transferable.

Misplaced a License?

All hunting and fishing license including lifetime licenses can be accessed, viewed, emailed, and printed from your home computer at no cost at https://gooutdoorstennessee.com/ any time 24/7/365. You can also purchase a duplicate hard card online, from our TWRA mobile app, or from our license agents for a fee of $8.00. Please verify your address at the time of purchase.