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The City has received complaints from some residents about door-to-door solicitation in residential neighborhoods. Residents have also complained about the delivery of handbills, newspapers, and magazines at their properties, and have asked the City to provide tighter regulations. Federal law allows residents to take specific steps to protect their own privacy. It also allows the City to place reasonable restrictions on times and places in which solicitation can occur, and the manner of that solicitation.

The Newport Beach City Council seeks to balance the rights of speakers with the right of Newport Beach residents who want privacy in their homes. The City Council adopted changes to the Newport Beach Municipal Code (“NBMC”), effective May 13, 2010, to strengthen that balance.

There are several recent changes to Chapter 5.42 of the Newport Beach Municipal Code (“NBMC”) that affect commercial and noncommercial solicitors and handbill distributors. If you, or your volunteers, agents, employees, representatives or contractors will be soliciting in any area of the city (residential, commercial, or public property), please review this page to see how the changes will affect you.

1. Registration Requirements

As of May 13, 2010, only commercial solicitors are required to register with the City prior to soliciting within Newport Beach. Newport Beach business license holders, who used to be exempt from the registration requirements, now must register and obtain registration cards if they plan to solicit within the city. Noncommercial solicitors are not required to register, but are required to comply with all other provisions of NBMC Chapter 5.42, including restrictions on solicitation hours and not soliciting or delivering handbills at homes that display “no soliciting” signs or that appear on the “Do Not Solicit” list.

Please check the "Frequently Asked Questions" section to see whether you are a commercial or a noncommercial solicitor. Just because you are soliciting on behalf of a non-profit organization does not mean you are automatically considered a noncommercial solicitor under the NBMC.

Handbill distributors: do not need to register, but must provide:
  • Contact information on the handbill,
  • Notice on the handbill that residents may contact the distributor to stop the delivery of handbills in the future,
  • Must not deliver more handbills to residents who have requested that deliveries stop, and
  • Handbill distributors must also follow the restrictions in NBMC sections 5.42.100 (Handbills in Public Places), 5.42.110 (Placing Handbills on Vehicles) and 5.42.100 (Distribution of Handbills on Residential Property.)
  • Handbill distributors may not deliver to homes displaying “no soliciting” signs, and/or homes whose addresses appear on the “Do Not Solicit” list. (See NBMC sections 5.42.120 and 5.42.125.)

How to register: The Newport Beach Police Department administers solicitor registration, and provides the registration cards that every commercial solicitor must carry at all times while soliciting within the city. (See NBMC section 5.42.025.) Commercial solicitors must submit application forms and receive registration cards prior to soliciting in any area of the city. Please visit http://www.nbpd.org, or click here to download a PDF copy of the application. The completed application, along with the application fee, must be returned to:

Newport Beach Police Department
870 Santa Barbara Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92658-7000
FAX: (949)644-3693

2. Residents’ “Do Not Solicit” Registry

As of May 13, 2010, the City will host a “Do Not Solicit” registry on its website. Residents who do not wish to receive commercial solicitation, noncommercial solicitation and handbills at their homes may sign up for the registry. This service is intended to benefit both the residents and the solicitors. Residents who don’t want to receive unsolicited communication and handbills can provide notice to solicitors and handbill distributors. Solicitors and handbill distributors can target their efforts and resources towards residents who are most likely to be receptive to the message.

Solicitors and handbill distributors should check the “Do Not Solicit” lists regularly, as residents may sign up at any time over the course of a calendar year. To download a copy of the list, select the “Do Not Solicit List Download” button below.

It is a violation of NBMC section 5.42.125 to solicit or distribute handbills at any dwelling unit that displays a “no soliciting” sign, or is included on the City’s “Do Not Solicit” registry. This applies to all solicitation and handbills, whether the message is commercial or noncommercial.

Please remember that all solicitation is prohibited in all areas of the city between the hours of 9:00 PM and 8:00 AM.

Last updated: 1/31/2011 11:32:28 AM