Blueline and Golden Tilefish - Includes Recreational
Category 1: Commercial
Open access permit for commercial harvest and sale of tilefish. Commercial permit holders in the golden tilefish fishery wishing to exceed the incidental possession limit must also hold an Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) Allocation Permit, issued to an individual.
In 2017, 1804 Category 1 permits were issued.
Category 2: Recreational (Charter/Party)
Open access permit that allows vessel operators to take passengers for hire to recreationally fish for tilefish
In 2017, 538 Category 2 permits were issued.
Category 3: Private Recreational Tilefish Vessel Permit
Open access permit that allows private recreational vessels to fish for and/or retain tilefish in waters north of the North Carolina/Virginia line.
Control Date: 12/14/2015 (blueline tilefish fishery only)
Commercial Operator Permit: Operator cards are required for any operator of a charter/party boat or a commercial vessel (including carrier and processor vessels) issued a vessel permit from the Greater Atlantic Region and fishing for or in possession of fish.
Commercial Dealer/Processor Permit: Tilefish may be sold only to persons possessing a valid Federal tilefish dealer permit.
How to obtain a federal fishing permit: Anyone with a valid vessel operator’s permit can obtain a federal commercial tilefish permit.
Recreational anglers will need to get a general recreational fishing license either through your state or through us to fish recreationally for marine species.
IFQ Allocations (Golden Tilefish): Golden tilefish IFQ allocations are issued for the golden tilefish fishing year (November 1-October 31) and represent a percent of the annual total allowable landings after adjustments for incidental catch are deducted. IFQ allocations can also be reduced because of an overage in the previous year. Because of these factors, IFQ allocations can change on an annual basis. A vessel that was not initially issued an IFQ allocation, or does not currently own an allocation, can possess more than the incidental possession limit only by completing an allocation transfer with an IFQ allocation owner.
How to complete the interest declaration form: In order to obtain/maintain tilefish IFQ allocation, a person and/or entity must declare their interest in and acquire a Tilefish IFQ Allocation Permit. Call our Permits Division at 978-282-8438 to request a Tilefish interest declaration form.
How to complete an IFQ allocation transfer: IFQ allocations are fully transferable among persons or entities that are U.S. citizens or corporations eligible to own a U.S. Coast Guard documented vessel. An IFQ Allocation Transfer Form may be submitted any time after the tilefish IFQ allocations have been issued for a given fishing year. To be processed for the current fishing year, a transfer form must be received prior to September 1.
IFQ transfers may be temporary or permanent. A temporary IFQ transfer allows an IFQ allocation permit holder to lease out a temporary right to land a specified amount of tilefish to any other person or entity for the remainder of the fishing year. Temporary transfers may not be sub-leased.
A permanent IFQ transfer allows an IFQ allocation permit holder to permanently sell some or all of his/her tilefish IFQ allocation. Persons or entities receiving a permanent transfer of allocation in a given fishing year may not be able to fish all of that allocation if the prior owner had already landed tilefish under that year’s allocation. The new owner would receive the full IFQ allocation in the following fishing year.
Call our Permits Division at (978) 282-8438 to request the form to complete an IFQ transfer.
No person or entity may own, or have an interest in, more that 49 percent of the total tilefish IFQ allocation. Temporary and permanent IFQ transfers are monitored by NMFS to ensure that this cap is not exceeded at any point during a fishing year.
Species Covered By This Permit
- Golden Tilefish
- Blueline Tilefish
How to Apply
All permits are free of charge. Go to Fish Online to apply online.
For assistance or to request that an application be mailed to you, contact our Permit Office at 978-282-8438.
What Happens After You Submit
Once we receive your complete application, you will receive your permit within 30 days.