The Oregon Seal Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife  
 » ODFW Home    » Licenses and Regulations    »Licenses and Fees   » License Agents
About Us Fishing Hunting Viewing License/Regs Conservation Living With Wildlife Education
Licenses and Regulations

Electronic Licensing System (ELS) Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

Updated 8/29/18

Transitioning to the new system

What are the anticipated changes to agents selling licenses?

The main changes include elimination of the point of sale terminal, availability of electronic licenses and plain paper licenses, instead of special paper licenses. The new system is accessible via the web and can be accessed from a regular computer, using a standard printer for 8.5”x11” paper. Agents will use their own computers, notebooks, tablets or phones for sales as ODFW will not be supplying equipment or supplies. Licenses and tags purchased are visible on a computing device or may be printed on plain paper. The system will combine multiple products (licenses, permits etc…) on one sheet of paper.

How do I get on to the new system?

First, send in your new signed Agent Agreement and EFT Form. Then, provide an email with the single point of contact for setting up users to We will email the point of contact the temporary login access to set up your location’s users. The point of contact needs to also create a separate account. (We had some issues with some of the password combinations that were sent. If you have an issue logging in to create your user, please send an email to If you or your company did not receive the email, please contact

When will the “old” system be shutting down?

The “old” system will be shutting down on Friday, November 30 at 6 pm, after which your current point-of-sale terminal will no longer be available to conduct sales. Please wrap up sales processes by 5:55 pm. Please run a report just prior to 6 pm to get your weekly ACH sweep amount. If you have trouble running the report, please contact us at to request a report before December 5.

What will happen with the existing point of sale equipment and supplies?

The current vendor will be sending instructions and a prepaid label for FedEx to be used with the existing equipment (point-of-sale terminal, barcode scanner, and printer). The plastic license paper can be destroyed—please do not use it for any other purpose. If do not have a way to destroy it, you may return it to ODFW Headquarters, Warehouse, 4034 Fairview Industrial Drive SE, Salem OR 97302.

When will the new system be available?

We are expecting the system to be ready as of 8:00 am on Saturday 12/1, but as with any new system launch, it could take a little longer. We will send email to all agent points of contact letting them know when it is ready.

Is training available for the new solution?

A 14-minute agent training video is available at We encourage you and your staff to view the video before using the system.

What equipment and supplies are required for the new system?

The new system needs a 1) device that can access the internet and printer and 2) a printer that can print black and white on 8 ½ x11 paper. We are planning to incorporate barcode scanner functionality in a future phase. We will contact you with information about compatible barcode scanners when that information is available. Paper and toner will be the responsibility of the store.

What if we are not able to print from our device?

Please talk to your store management about setting up a printer. This is a requirement to be able to sell items through the system.

Can we use barcode scanners?

You will be sending back the barcode scanner you use for the “old” system to the vendor. We are planning to incorporate barcode scanner functionality in a future phase. We will contact you with information about compatible barcode scanners when that information is available.

Why is ODFW moving to have computer equipment and printers supplied by Agents?

The new ELS will not have vendor provided equipment because of the high cost of application-specific equipment, specialized paper and printers, and statewide equipment support. Agents will be able to use computing devices already in use and are not required to make equipment purchases solely dedicated for the ELS.

How will we collect our agent fees? 

Just like with the “old” system, you will collect the agent fees as part of the price of each product. An ACH sweep each Thursday will collect the funds from the company’s bank account. The amount of the sweep does not include the agent fee; your company will keep that portion. Your company billing contact(s) will receive an emailed weekly invoice on Sundays showing the sweep amount for the next Thursday.

Will the new system be a website or app?

The new system is a web application, so nothing is installed on your company computer. Customers may download the MyODFW app for iOS to take advantage of e-tagging. The app is available for iOS from the Apple App Store or Android from Google Play.

Searching for a customer

Which customers are already in the system?

ODFW has moved over 1.2 million existing customer accounts into the new system, so most of your customers should already be in the system. We have moved customers who have purchased an annual license in the last 3 years or who have something that lasts from year to year, such as preference points, goose certification, pioneer certification, etc. You will need to set up an account for customers who don’t meet these criteria. If someone just wants to buy a daily license or parking permit, there is now a function that allows you to sell to them as a guest and not complete a full customer profile for them in the system.

This customer says they should be in the system—how do I find them?

When searching for a customer, you will need to enter enough information to allow the system to land on that one person. The system will not show any results if more than one person matches the search (for example, “John Smith”). The fastest way to search is to use the person’s hunter ID (now called “ODFW ID”), but you can also use their name, date of birth, and email or phone number.

Setting up a new customer

Can a customer purchase a license if they do not have an account set up with ODFW first?

Yes, although they may need to contact ODFW. Only a small percentage of your customers will not have an account in the system. If you cannot locate the customer by searching, you may create their account. If they choose to purchase an item (such as an annual license) that requires a Social Security Number for a new customer, they will be prompted at that time to contact ODFW to provide this. Customers may call 503-947-6101 during ODFW business hours or log onto their ODFW account online in order to provide their Social Security Number. Retail agents will no longer collect Social Security Numbers. Once the customer has provided the Social Security Number to ODFW one time, they may purchase annual products now and in the future.

Do we need to ask for a username and password to set up their account?

No—the customer will be prompted for username and password if only they go online.

If a customer comes from out of state, can we use the “create a new customer” tab for them like a local new person?

Yes—you can create a new customer for anyone. If the person is “just passing through” and is purchasing a daily license or parking permit, we encourage you to use guest checkout instead.

Verifying a customer

Why is it prompting me to have the customer verify their information?

Most of your customers will already have an account in the new system. The first time they go to make a purchase, it will prompt you to have them verify their information to make sure we have their current information. It will then prompt once a year after this.

Social Security Number

Why can’t we collect the Social Security Number as before?

To protect your company from liability and the customer’s personal data, the new system will only allow the customer to provide their Social Security Number directly to ODFW. They may do this by going to the system online, going to an ODFW office, or contacting ODFW at 503-947-6101. We only collect the Social Security Number one time for each customer, and over 1.2 million customers are already in the system and have provided a Social Security Number.

Why is the Social Security Number required?

ODFW is required by law to collect the Social Security Number of any customer who purchases an annual license to assist the Oregon Department of Justice in child support enforcement.

E-tagging vs. Paper tagging

What is e-tagging or paper tagging?

If you are setting up a new customer, they will need to select paper tagging or e-tagging for the year. If they choose paper, they can switch to e-tagging if they choose. Once e-tagging is chosen, however, they cannot change back to paper tagging. If they choose e-tagging, they are confirming that they will have access to a phone with the MyODFW app installed. (Available for iOS and Android)
Paper tag: The customer will validate their tag by writing in ink the harvest date/time and Wildlife Management Unit or stream and species code for fish harvest where the harvest occurred. Place the paper tag in a plastic bag to protect it from the elements and attach it to the carcass.
Electronic tag (cell phone or tablet): The customer will tag electronically with the MyODFW app that will work even when offline. Then they will:

  1. Take the confirmation number from the app, plus their name, ODFW ID, Date of Birth, and harvest date, and write it on anything that will stand up to the elements (like duct tape, trail ribbon or piece of paper in plastic bag)
  2. Affix it to the animal like a paper tag
  3. Keep it attached to the carcass in transport, as they would a paper tag.

Note that for other fish and wildlife requiring tagging (Western Ore. fee pheasant and salmon, steelhead, sturgeon, halibut), hunters and anglers who choose electronic tagging will only need to record their harvest in the MyODFW app, which works when offline.


Do we have to ask them when they moved to Oregon?

Yes—if they have an Oregon address, the system requires the date when they moved to Oregon. If they don’t have an Oregon address, just leave it blank. If they have lived in Oregon at least 6 months, the system will see them as an Oregon resident for pricing. If their address is not in Oregon, the system will see them as a nonresident.

Felony--Firearms restrictions

Why is the felony question asked now when purchasing licenses?  Will the sale automatically be halted?

 This question was already on the license before.  Because the agency has moved to an attestation process that does not require a paper certification, acknowledgement from the customer must be clear.  It is acceptable to have the customer read the question on the screen and acknowledge, if the store does not wish its staff to read the question out loud.

Why ask about firearm restrictions when the customer only wants a fishing license?

This information becomes part of their customer account for future purchases.


Are all customers, including minors, required to have an email address, even if they use paper tagging?

Customers who purchase paper tags at license sale agents or ODFW offices will be encouraged (but not required) to include an email address in their profiles. All customers age 12 and over who purchase licenses/tags online or choose electronic tags are required to have a unique email address  (not shared by anyone else with a MyODFW account, including a parent or relative) for their account.
The unique email address is one way customers can be found and identified in the new system and tied to their specific licensing information. Also, with the new system, ODFW is switching its primary communication method with customers from mail to email for cost savings and efficiency. Customers who provide an email can opt out of receiving certain ODFW emails if they choose.


Why do we have to read this statement to the customer?

There is a statement that needs to be read aloud to the customer that has the customer attest that the information provided is true. Because we have moved from a paper process to an electronic process for licenses, the license no longer needs to be signed. The attestation takes the place of the signature.

Do I need to read things (attestation, etc.) aloud to the customer or turn screen to allow the customer to select items?

This is your choice--if you have the capability to turn the screen that will work. If not, you may read the item.

Selling products

I don’t see all the products I used to. Where are they?

The new system prices products based on the customer type: Senior, Disabled Veteran, Nonresident Youth, Pioneer, Resident, Resident Youth, Resident Uniformed Services, Non-Resident, Non-Resident Unformed Services. As you enter the customer's information (age, address, etc.), the system will identify immediately type of pricing and products they are eligible for. You will not see products that the customer is not eligible to purchase. You will also not see products that are not available for sale on that date.

Print documents

How can I print the customer’s documents?

After collecting payment and confirming the sale, there will be two buttons: Print Receipt and Print Documents. Both will open new tabs in the browser (popups need to be enabled) with PDF documents to print for the customer.

What do printed licenses and tags look like? How does the layout look on the 8 ½ x 11 page?

Licenses will all be printed together on one 8 ½ x 11 page. Other items, such as parking permits and tags, will each print out on individual pages for convenience.

What happens if we have a printer issue such as a printer jam? Can we do a reprint?

You are able to reprint as long as the browser tab with the PDF document remains open. Once that tab is closed, reprints of all items except for paper tags and harvest cards can be completed from the customer’s recreational portfolio.  Paper tags and harvest cards only can only be reprinted for a $2 fee by selecting to sell a duplicate item to the customer. If a replacement tag is required, the customer will need to go to an ODFW office.

Can the customer laminate their license or tags?

Yes. They need to be sure the material can be written on in permanent ink.

Can we charge for the paper copies we might print for a customer? 

You cannot charge a customer extra (beyond the product price) for the printouts. There is no provision for agents to recoup additional costs as agent fees are in statute.  ODFW has consolidated licenses to print on fewer pages to help reduce cost.

Can customers photocopy their documents?

Customers cannot to photocopy their paper tags or harvest cards. Tools available for enforcement to ensure they are using individual copies of the tags. Customers can reprint licenses and other items from their recreational portfolio.

Purchasing for other people

Can a customer purchase items for other people? Can a 2019 license be purchased for a Christmas gift?

Before a customer can purchase for another person, that person will need to have verified their own account information online or at a license sales agent. (The verification allows the system to identify the products and pricing the customer is eligible for.)
Once their account is verified, you will need their ODFW ID# or full name and date of birth to purchase for that person at a license sales agent or ODFW office. Purchasing a gift online will require you to log in to the person’s account with their user name and password, which is not recommended. 
Gift giving will be easier in March when a function called “Group Purchase” is launched. This new function will allow customers to build a group of family and friends that they can make purchases for, using that list to easily buy both online and at license sale agents or ODFW. In preparation for the launch of the Group Purchase feature, customers should make sure to note the ODFW ID numbers of the people they plan to purchase for in the future so that they can easily locate their account and build the group.

Mobile App

Where is the app available?

The MyODFW app is available on the Google Play and Apple stores starting 12/1.


Will we have a way to identify who sold what license?

Yes, there are sales reports in the system that show all transactions and items sold by your location, as well as the staff person who completed the sale.

Customer Service

How can customers provide feedback on the system?

Users can send feedback to

Will initial support staff be increased to field problems and questions during the start up?

Yes. We have additional staff on hand to respond to your phone calls at 800-293-3762 and email questions at We appreciate your patience as we launch the new system.



About Us | Fishing | Hunting | Wildlife Viewing | License / Regs | Conservation | Living with Wildlife | ODFW Outdoors

ODFW Home | Driving Directions | Employee Directory | Social Media | | File Formats | Employee Webmail | ODFW License Agents

4034 Fairview Industrial Drive SE   ::   Salem, OR 97302   ::    Main Phone (503) 947-6000 or (800) 720-ODFW [6339]

Do you have a question or comment for ODFW? Contact ODFW's Public Service Representative at:
Share your opinion or comments on a Fish and Wildlife Commission issue at

   © ODFW. All rights reserved. This page was last updated: 11/30/2018 2:36 PM