Permit Assistance

Find resources to complete wetland and shoreland permit applications, including forms, checklists and worksheets.

Projects that involve excavation, fill, dredge, removal, and/or construction of structures in or on any bank, flat, marsh, or swamp in or adjacent to wetlands and waterbodies often require wetlands permit application forms or authorizations. Requirements can range from simple notification to fuller demonstration of avoidance and minimization including alternative analyses and supporting documentation.

Permitting eligibility and requirements are specified in state statute (RSA 482-A) and state administrative rules (Env-Wt 100-900).

For help using the state Natural Heritage Bureau's DataCheck tool ahead of your permit application, please watch this short video.

For additional help or questions on proposed projects in or near state jurisdictional areas such as wetlands, you can request technical assistance, email or call (603) 271-2147 and ask to speak with the Inspector of the Day.

Permit Applications and Project Worksheets

Permits and authorizations vary significantly by proposed project type. Use the "checklists" included with application forms to confirm you have included all required attachments.

Processing Wetlands Permit Applications

an image of tall grass in front of the beach

Processing Permit Applications

In Land Resources Management, we work to process permit application packages promptly and consistently. A team of cross-trained administrators staffs our Application Receipt Center and reviews each application.


a log with flowers growing on it lies on waterAcceptance and technical review

We "accept" permit application packages that include all required elements. Applicants receive a letter confirming this acceptance. Next, technical staff review the application for compliance with all applicable standards. They confirm it fulfills all requirements specified in state statutes and rules.

Read a sample "acceptance" letter

tall grass next to the water

Incomplete Application Notifications

If your application package is missing any required elements, it is incomplete. We will notify you by mail or email, including names of the missing elements and instructions on how to resubmit your completed application. You must also provide copies of missing or modified elements of application packages to the municipal clerk and to any others required by state statute or rule. We will also copy the municipal clerk in the city or town where your proposed project is located.

Read a sample incompleteness letter

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Immediate Compliance Review 

Registrations and notifications that include all required elements are considered administratively complete. They are identified this way on OneStop and receive immediate compliance reviews. Certain notifications, such as Wetlands Seasonal Dock, Forestry Standard Permits by Notification and Wetlands Permits by Notification also receive confirmatory generic permits by mail.  

See sample completeness letter

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Incomplete Registrations and Notifications will be rejected 

Registrations and Notifications missing the required elements will be considered incomplete. The ARC will notify the applicant of the determination, via First Class mail, identifying the missing elements and describing how to resubmit the notification package to NHDES. Incomplete registrations or notifications are identified as such on NHDES OneStop. Incomplete Wetlands and Shoreland PBNs are rejected. The ARC will notify the applicant, via First Class mail of the determination, identifying the missing elements. 

See sample rejection letter   

wetlands plants next to waterCheck Permit Application Status 

Check the status of applications, registrations or notifications in "OneStop" where we also post weekly decision reports.   

Check status

Overlapping Jurisdictions

  • Federal: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE)
    For activities regulated by "Corps" and NHDES jurisdiction, the USACE NH General Permit (GP) helps minimize duplication between state and federal regulatory review. For your convenience, an appendix is included with the NHDES Wetlands Standard Permit Application and Permit by Notification forms:  Appendix B - Corps Secondary Impacts Checklist.

  • State: New Hampshire Division of Historical Resources (NHDHR) 
    As required by General Condition #8 of the General Permit (GP), and Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA), applicants must consult with the State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO) to ensure all authorized activities will not adversely affect properties listed on, determined to be eligible for listing on, or potentially eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places, including previously unknown historic sites within the project area. Please send a Request for Project Review to the state Division of Historical Resources.

  1. Mitigation hierarchy removal. Permit applicants are not required to prove there are no local mitigation options before opting for in-lieu fee option.
  2. Greater Wetlands Permit by Notification (PBN) form accessibility and ease of use. The form has been shortened from ten (printed) pages down to seven.
  3. The PBN form also includes three new project categories:
  • Temporary tier 1 or tier 2 stream crossings (one only) impacting less than 50 linear feet of stream channel. 
  • Minimum impact, single lot, residential driveways (one only).
  • Minimum impact pond maintenance.

For more information on “Lower Scrutiny Approvals” see Env-Wt 309 or read the full adopted rules.


NHDES will review wetlands Permit By Notification (PBN) applications within 10 calendar days (Env-Wt 309.08(a)), with two exceptions:

  1. Applicants are strongly encouraged to include a signed written waiver of intervention from their conservation commission. If they do not, assigned staff will review PBN applications within 25 days.
  2. Applicants are strongly encouraged to include a signed written waiver of intervention from their river management advisory committee, if applicable. If they do not, assigned staff will review PBN applications within 25 days. 

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