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Sporting Licenses Under the Patriot Plan

Free hunting, fishing and trapping licenses are available to NYS residents who have the appropriate Sportsmen Education and are active service members of the military based on qualifications listed below. Nonresident military members stationed in New York for greater than 30 days qualify for fishing, hunting and trapping licenses at resident price.

Qualifying Military Personnel

NYS residents who are active service members of either the New York State Organized Militia, U.S. Reserve Forces, or certain members of the U.S. Armed Forces. Inactive service status does not qualify an individual for free DEC sporting licenses.

"Active Service" shall mean full-time or part-time status in one of the branches listed below of the New York and U.S. military forces.

Organized Militia - NYS resident

  • NY Army National Guard
  • NY Air National Guard
  • NY Naval Militia
  • NY Guard

Note: must be in NY National Guard, not a National Guard of another State (eg. VT, PA, MA, NJ)

U.S. Reserve Forces - NYS resident

  • U.S. Army Reserve
  • U.S. Naval Reserve
  • U.S. Marine Corps Reserve
  • U.S. Air Force Reserve
  • U.S. Coast Guard Reserve

U.S. Armed Forces - Full-time Active Duty - NYS resident

Must be a NYS resident stationed outside NY who will be home in NY on leave or furlough for 30 days or less. Eligibility example: John Doe is a resident of NY and is stationed at Camp Lejeune, NC, and will be in NY for 20 days on leave

  • U.S. Army
  • U.S. Navy
  • U.S. Marine Corps
  • U.S. Air Force
  • U.S. Coast Guard

(Note: if you are a NY resident stationed in New York, regular license fees apply)

Forms of Proof Required

  1. Military ID Card:
    • U.S. Armed Forces Identification Card (Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Coast Guard) (Card must indicate Guard, Reserve, or Active Duty)
    • NY State (NY Naval Militia, NY Guard) (Card will not indicate Active or Inactive)

  2. Completed Certificate of Active Military Affidavit (PDF). To be completed by the service member seeking a license.

    AND for U.S. Armed Forces service members only
  3. Authorized leave or furlough orders showing applicant stationed outside of NY and on leave or furlough for 30 days or less.

Where to Apply

You can apply either at a license issuing agent location or through the online license issuing system (link leaves DEC website).

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  • Contact for this Page
    Fish, Wildlife & Marine Resources
    625 Broadway
    Albany, NY 12233-4754
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