Frequently Asked Questions: Commercial Fishing

Licenses

What do I need to buy and sell saltwater fish?

A Saltwater Products License will allow you to catch saltwater fish in commercial quantities and sell them to a licensed Wholesale Dealer.

A Wholesale license, County or Statewide, will allow you to purchase saltwater products from a licensed commercial fisherman, statewide or within a specified county respectively, and resell it to other wholesellers, restaurants, or a retail dealer.  A statewide license will allow the holder to import and export saltwater products.

A Retail License will allow you to purchase saltwater products from a wholesale dealers and sell it to the public.

Note: A person with a saltwater products license cannot sell directly to a retail license holder.  The product must be sold to a wholesale dealer.

How do I apply for a license?

To apply for a license please mail the application form, Saltwater Products License or Wholesale/Retail License, to the address at the top of the application along with a check or money order for the fees.

How do I pay for a license?

If you are submitting a new application please mail it to the address at the top of the applications with a check or money order for the total. We do not accept starter checks from any banks.  
If you are renewing your license you can do so either online or mail in your renewal invoice and a check or money order to the address at the top of the renewal form.  

How long does it take to process an application?

A new, renewal, or reprint application mailed into our office can take 3-4 weeks from the time it is mailed to our office to when you receive your license in the mail.
If you renew your license online, the payment is applied immediately and your licenses are mailed out within 3 business days.

How do I add a new Vessel License?

To add a new vessel SPL to your account you must mail in a new SPL application for each boat you wish to add, along with a check or money order for the total fees, and a current copy of each vessel registration.  If there is more than one you wish to add you may write one check for the total, just be sure to mail them all in together.

How do I get a replacement license or vessel decal?

If your license or vessel decal is lost or stolen please complete the license reprint formAdobe PDF and send in a check or money order for $10 for each license and decal you need replaced to the address at the top of the application.  Please allow 3-4 weeks for processing.

 

Restricted Species Endorsement

How do I apply for a Restricted Species endorsement?

To apply for a Restricted Species endorsement please print out the Restricted Species applicationAdobe PDF and submit it to our office with the supporting documentation. If you need to add a Restricted Species endorsement to an existing license you will also need to mail the license and a reprint form to the address at the top of Restricted Species application.

What are the qualification methods for the Restricted Species endorsement?

All of the qualification methods and their explanations can be found on the Restricted Species page.

What is a crewshare statement?

A crewshare statement is a notarized document that allows a SPL license holder to qualify another SPL license holder for a Restricted Species endorsement using their own sales.  Both fisherman must have been fishing under a legal license, whether it was a Vessel SPL, Crew SPL, or both applicants possessed an Individual SPL.  The crewshare is written by the cardholder whose landings are being used.  The crewshare is written by the employer to the employee.  View a blank crewshare statement.Adobe PDF

What can I catch without a Restricted Species endorsement?

View a complete list of the restricted and non-restricted species Adobe PDF

 

Other Endorsements

What do I need to Dive for Spiny Lobster?

In order to commercially dive for Spiny Lobster you must have an SPL with a Restricted Species endorsement and a Lobster endorsement with a Dive endorsement/authorization. The Commercial Dive Authorization/Endorsement is currently on moratorium and can only be acquired by purchasing it from someone who wishes to sell it.

What do I need to Bullynet Lobster?

In order to commercially bullynet Spiny Lobster you must have an SPL with a Restricted Species endorsement and a Lobster endorsement.

What do I need to catch and sell Blue Crab?

In order to commercially harvest Blue Crab you must have an SPL with a Restricted Species endorsement and a Blue Crab endorsement. The Blue Crab endorsement is currently on moratorium and can only be acquired by purchasing it from someone who wishes to sell it.

What do I need to catch and sell Stone Crabs?

In order to commercially harvest Stone Crab you must have an SPL with a Restricted Species endorsement and a Stone Crab endorsement.  You can harvest them with anything that will not peirce or puncture their shell.  If you wish to use traps you will need to have a trap tag per trap that you wish to use.  Trap tags can only be acquired from someone who wishes to sell them.

What do I need to catch and sell Lobster with traps?

In order to commercially harvest Spiny Lobster you must have an SPL with a Restricted Species endorsement and a Lobster endorsement. If you wish to use traps you will need to have a trap tag for each trap that you wish to use.  The required trap tags can only be acquired from someone who wishes to sell them.

How do I transfer an endorsement from one license to another? (within the same applicant)

If you wish to transfer an endorsement from one license to another existing license you will need to submit a license reprint formAdobe PDF for each license, if you want them both reprinted, and both SPL cards to our office with a $10 reprint fee for each license being reprinted.  Please be specific as to where you want the endorsements to move from and to.  

 

Trap Tags

How long does it take to process an endorsement/tag transfer?

An endorsement transfer can take 2-4 weeks depending on the time of year.

What do I need to complete a tag transfer?

Follow the checklist that is provided in step 6 of the transfer applicationAdobe PDF.  It has a list of all the requirements to correctly complete a transfer.

What are A1, A2, and B tags?

A1 tags are tags that have not been previously transferred outside the original owner and are subject to a surcharge when transferred outside the applicant. 
A2 tags are tags that have been transferred with a family normally due to death or disability.  The A2 tags are subject to a surcharge and reduction when being transferred outside the immediate family.
B tags are tags that have been previously transferred out side the original applicant and therefore are NOT subject to a surcharge when being transferred.

All tags are subject to a tag reduction upon being transferred unless they are being transferred to an immediate family member.

What are surcharge fees and how are they calculated?

Surcharge fees are fees that are applied when A1 or A2 tags are transferred to persons outside of the immediate family.  The surcharge fee will either be 25% of the total sale price or $1.00 per tag (Stone Crab) or $5.00 per tag(Lobster), whichever is greater.

What are the acceptable forms of payment for a tag transfer?

All payments for transfers must be certified funds either in the form or a money order or cashiers check.  No personal checks will be accepted.

My tags were lost/stolen.  How do I get new ones?

If your tags are lost or stolen you first need to file a lost or stolen tag report to your local FWC law enforcement office.  Then send a copy of the report along with a tag replacement for and a check or money order for the cost of the tags that you wish to replace.  We will then place a tag order for you and they will be delivered within 4-6 weeks.

How long does it take to receive my tags once I have paid for them?

From the time the tag payment is received it can take up to 4-6 weeks for the tags to be printed and shipped to the delivery address on your account.




FWC Facts:
Anyone under 21 years of age with a breath-alcohol level of .02 or higher and operating or controlling a vessel is in violation of Florida law.

Learn More at AskFWC