North Carolina: Information on Landowner Protection Act Available Online
With hunting season under way, the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission has posted information on its website about the new Landowner Protection Act.
The law, which went into effect Oct. 1, requires hunters, anglers and trappers to obtain written permission from a landowner or leaseholder before hunting, fishing or trapping on privately owned, posted property — including land, waters, ponds or legally established waterfowl blinds.
The Landowner Protection Act provides two ways for landowners to post their lands to allow only hunters, trappers and anglers with written permission to enter their property legally. Landowners can now post their land by using vertical purple paint marks on posts or trees, or, as in the past, by placing signs or posters.
The Landowner Protection Act specifically relates only to hunting, fishing or trapping on posted lands. It clarifies the existing N.C.G.S. 14-159.6 requirement for written consent to hunt, fish or trap on posted lands by specifying that written permission, dated within the past 12 months and signed by the landowner, leaseholder or agent of that land, be carried and displayed upon request of any law enforcement officer. If a hunting club has leased the land, a person shall have a copy of their hunting club membership and a copy of the landowner permission granted to that hunting club.
The Landowner Protection Act does not change general trespass laws or affect lands that are not posted. It does not repeal any local acts currently in effect that require written permission to hunt, fish or trap.
Under existing landowner liability law, landowners providing permission for hunting or fishing on their property, without charge, assume no more liability than currently is afforded a trespasser, in accordance with N.C.G.S. 38A-4.