An Easy Guide to West Coast Commercial Fishing Permits

West Coast Commercial Fishing Permits

Are you thinking about beginning a career in commercial fishing? If so, this may be an exciting time in your life. Maybe angling has been a lifelong hobby of yours, and you are finally making the jump to turn it into your profession. Or, perhaps you are a shrewd business mind, and you have correctly identified commercial fishing as a large, profitable industry? Regardless of what brought you to this point, you should be prepared for hard work and long hours at sea. As you will be managing your own business, you will also need to periodically complete some paperwork. Ensuring that you have the correct west coast commercial fishing permits is one such bureaucratic task that you are going to want to complete early on. 

Commercial and industrial fishing is a global industry. Anywhere there is a shoreline, you can likely find commercial fishing operations. In the United States, which is home to thousands of miles of coastline, commercial fishing is an old and prominent aspect of the economy. The west coast, which generally comprises California, Oregon, and Washington, sits alongside a number of well-stocked and commonly used fisheries. If you are thinking about setting up a commercial fishing business, you could certainly do worse than the waters of the Pacific.

Choosing the Right West Coast Commercial Fishing Permits for Your Business

Starting your commercial fishing business requires a significant amount of planning. Between outfitting your boat with the right gear and hiring a seasoned and experienced crew, you likely have a full plate. Not to mention, you need to identify your market and determine what you will be catching, as well as where you will be catching it. This would also be a good juncture to start applying for the permits you need.

Depending on where you will be dropping your lines, you may need state permits, federal permits, or a mixture of the two. State waters comprise the area from zero to three nautical miles from land, while the federal territory is everything from three to 200 nautical miles out. State permits, as you can probably imagine, are issued by state agencies. You can work with the correct offices in California, Washington, and Oregon to obtain what you will need for state waters. Federal permits, on the other hand, are assigned by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and they have a specific subset of licenses available for the west coast region.

West Coast Commercial Fishing Permits

What Is the Best Way to Apply for Your Licenses?

Once you have determined which permits you to need, you can get to work on completing the necessary applications. There are a couple of pathways for completing this process. The first would be to source PDFs or paper copies of all the necessary applications, complete them by hand, and then mail them to the correct agencies. If you are an entrepreneur, however, you may not have much time for that.

Instead, why not work with us at the Commercial Fishing Permits Center? We have easy-to-complete online forms for all of your state and federal fishing license needs. With just a few clicks, you can process your applications via our SSL-encrypted web portal in just minutes. To learn more, visit our helpful Frequently Asked Questions page.

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