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South Carolina Gun Laws

South Carolina gun laws operate on a Shall Issue policy at the state level. They allow for the issue of concealed carry permits to residents and non-residents, provided non-residents own property in the state. Exemptions are given to military personnel posted in the state. Applicants must be 21 years or older, have 20/40 vision, and completed a firearms training course. South Carolina does not honor non-resident permits from other states.

South Carolina CCW Quick Facts

TOTAL ACTIVE CCW
0
PERMITS IN SOUTH CAROLINA
Gun Laws
STATE RATING
Good
STATES THAT HONOR
0
A SC PERMIT
STATE PERMITS
0
SC HONORS
STATES NOT
0
HONORING PERMIT

South Carolina CCW Reciprocity

Created with Raphaël 2.0.1ALAK AZ ARCACOCTDEDCFLGAHIIDILINIAKSKYLAMEMDMAMIMNMSMOMTNENVNHNJNMNYNCNDOHOKORPARISCSDTNTXUTVTVAWAWVWIWY
Permit Honored
Permit not honored
Residential permits only
Issuing state

How Reciprocity Works in South Carolina

South Carolina will only honor residential permits from other states. For your permit to be honored the state must be on the state reciprocity list and you must be a resident of that state.

South Carolina Reciprocity State's

33 STATES RESIDENT

Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming

NON-RESIDENT
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
23 STATES RESIDENTIAL PERMITS ONLY
Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, Wyoming
17 STATES
California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Hampshire, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Washington

     Note

  • Idaho – SC only honors the Enhanced permit
  • Mississippi – SC only honors the Enhanced permit
  • North Dakota – SC only honors the Enhanced permit
  • South Dakota – SC only honors the Enhanced permit
  • West Virginia – Must be 21 years or older.

South Carolina Concealed Weapons Permit

MINIMUM

0
AGE REQUIRED

COST OF

$ 0
CWW PERMIT

YEARS PERMIT

0
IS VALID

South Carolina CWP Forms

Download Your Forms

South Carolina: Places Off-Limits for CCW

South Carolina state flag

Places Off-Limits in South Carolina

  • Law enforcement office or facility.
  • Detention or correctional facility.
  • Courthouse or courtroom.
  • Polling place on election days.
  • Any publicly owned building or property without permission from persons in charge.
  • State Capitol building or grounds. CWP permit holders can leave their firearm locked in a vehicle.
  • Office of or the business meeting of the governing body of a county, public school district, municipality, or special purpose district.
  • School or college athletic event not related to firearms.
  • Daycare or preschool facility.
  • Place where federal law prohibits the carrying of firearms.
  • Church or other established religious sanctuary.
  • Hospital, doctors office, medical clinic or any building medical services are performed in. Unless given permission by employer.
  • Place clearly marked with a sign prohibiting the carrying of a concealable weapon on the premises.
  • Any place where the carrying of firearms is prohibited by Federal Law.

Short and Sweet| Headlines are Best!

  • State parks
  • State and national forests
  • Road side rest areas
  • Vehicle
  • All areas of the state – except those listed as Off-Limits

The Illinois Supreme Court ruled in February 2018 that the ban on carry near a public park is unconstitutional.

430 ILCS 66/65 – Off limits

Pointers: South Carolina CCW

South Carolina Gun Sales...

South Carolina Concealed Carry Laws

South Carolina state capitol building

South Carolina Gun Laws To Know

YES – WITHOUT A PERMIT

If you do not have a CCW permit but can legally own a firearm then you are legally entitled to carry the firearm loaded in a vehicle as long as it is placed in a closed glove box, console or trunk of vehicle. If there is no trunk then the firearm can be placed in the luggage area enclosed in a container and secured with fasteners. If the firearm is found in any other place such as in a purse, under the seat, on the seat, you will be charged. The law is very specific on where the firearm is placed.

With a permit from South Carolina or other recognized state, you can carry a loaded concealed handgun in a vehicle on or about your person.

The Law
16.23.20 – Exceptions to unlawful carry 21.31.230 – Carry between vehicle & accomodation

NO – WITH OR WITHOUT A PERMIT

Open carrying a handgun in South Carolina is illegal. Even if you have a concealed carry permit you still cannot legally open carry in this state.

YES – MUST INFORM OFFICER

South Carolina gun laws require you to inform a law enforcement officer you are carrying a firearm when approached on official business. You are also legally required to carry your permit at all times during which the permittee is in actual possession of a concealed handgun. The Law 23.31.215 – Issuance of permits

NO

South Carolina does not have constitutional carry.

YES

It is legal to carry in the following areas;

  • State Parks:       YES – 51.3.145
  • State/National Forests:     YES – 51.3.145
  • State Wildlife Management Areas:     YES – 123.203
  • Road Side Rest Areas:     YES – 16.23.420
YES

You can carry a firearm into a restaurant if you have a CCW permit, but you are not allowed to consume alcohol. If the restaurant has posted a “No Weapons” sign then it is illegal to enter.

“Yes” or “No” states if you can carry in a restaurant that serves alcohol.

The Law 16.23.465

YES

South Carolina gun laws give the force of law to“No Weapons” signs. There are legal penalties for entering a private property or business that has posted these signs.

GunsToCarry recommends that you do not enter a property displaying a “No Weapons” sign whether the law is for or against signage. If asked to leave a property and you refuse to do so then you are breaking the law and put yourself at risk of being charged.

The Law 23.31.235 – Sign Requirements

“A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”
(Art. 1, § 20)

Off-Limits Statutes

A permit issued pursuant to this section does not authorize a permit holder to carry a concealable weapon into a:

  1. law enforcement, correctional, or detention facility;
  2. courthouse or courtroom;
  3. polling place on election days;
  4. office of or the business meeting of the governing body of a county, public school district, municipality, or special purpose district;
  5. school or college athletic event not related to firearms;
  6. day care facility or pre-school facility;
  7. place where the carrying of firearms is prohibited by federal law;
  8. church or other established religious sanctuary unless express permission is given by the appropriate church official or governing body;
  9. hospital, medical clinic, doctor’s office, or any other facility where medical services or procedures are performed unless expressly authorized by the employer; or
  10. place clearly marked with a sign prohibiting the carrying of a concealable weapon on the premises pursuant to Sections 23-31-220 and 23-31-235. Except that a property owner or an agent acting on his behalf, by express written consent, may allow individuals of his choosing to enter onto property regardless of any posted sign to the contrary. A person who violates a provision of this item, whether the violation is willful or not, may only be charged with a violation of Section 16-11-620 and must not be charged with or penalized for a violation of this subsection.

Except as provided for in item (10), a person who willfully violates a provision of this subsection is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not less than one thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than one year, or both, at the discretion of the court and have his permit revoked for five years.

(5)“Concealable weapon” means a firearm having a length of less than twelve inches measured along its greatest dimension that must be carried in a manner that is hidden from public view in normal wear of clothing except when needed for self-defense, defense of others, and the protection of real or personal property.”

(A) It is unlawful for a person to possess a firearm of any kind on any premises or property owned, operated, or controlled by a private or public school, college, university, technical college, other post-secondary institution, or in any publicly-owned building, without the express permission of the authorities in charge of the premises or property. The provisions of this subsection related to any premises or property owned, operated, or controlled by a private or public school, college, university, technical college, or other post-secondary institution, do not apply to a person who is authorized to carry a concealed weapon pursuant to Article 4, Chapter 31, Title 23 when the weapon remains inside an attended or locked motor vehicle and is secured in a closed glove compartment, closed console, closed trunk, or in a closed container secured by an integral fastener and transported in the luggage compartment of the vehicle.”

Carrying Concealed Weapons Into Residences or Dwellings.

No person who holds a permit issued pursuant to Article 4, Chapter 31, Title 23 may carry a concealable weapon into the residence or dwelling place of another person without the express permission of the owner or person in legal control or possession, as appropriate. A person who violates this provision is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not less than one thousand dollars or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both, at the discretion of the court and have his permit revoked for five years.

Definitions

For purposes of this article:

(a) “passenger” means any individual served by a public transportation provider including charter bus activities;

(b) “bus” means any passenger bus or other motor vehicle having a seating capacity of not less than ten passengers operated by a public transportation provider for the purpose of carrying passengers, including charter passengers;

(c) “public transportation” is as defined in item (10) of Section 58-25-20;

(d) “public transportation provider” means any operator who offers or delivers public transportation;

(e) “public transportation vehicle” means any configuration of equipment for the purpose of providing public transportation.

General Prohibitions; Persons Who May Be Refused Transportation; Violations and Penalties.

(a) It is unlawful for any passenger to commit any of the following acts in a bus or any other public transportation vehicle:

(3) carry or possess any weapon, explosives, acids, other dangerous articles, or live animals, except for a seeing eye dog or a hearing ear dog properly harnessed and accompanied by its owner, small animals properly packaged, or weapons carried by or animals used by a law enforcement official;

(d) Any person violating the provisions of subsection (a) of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction for a first offense must be imprisoned for not more than thirty days or fined not more than two hundred dollars, for a second offense, imprisoned for not more than sixty days or fined not more than five hundred dollars, or both, and for a third or subsequent offense, imprisoned for not more than ninety days or fined not more than one thousand dollars, or both.

(A) It is unlawful for any person or group of persons to:

  1. carry or have readily accessible to the person upon the capitol grounds or within the capitol building any firearm or dangerous weapon; or
  2. discharge any firearm or to use any dangerous weapon upon the capitol grounds or within the capitol building.

(B) This section does not apply to a person who possesses a concealable weapons’ permit pursuant to Article 4, Chapter 31, Title 23 and is authorized to park on the capitol grounds or in the parking garage below the capitol grounds. The firearm must remain locked in the person’s vehicle while on or below the capitol grounds and must be stored in a place in the vehicle that is not readily accessible to any person upon entry to or below the capitol grounds.

Other CCW Statutes

(N) Issuance of Permits.

  1. Valid out-of-state permits to carry concealable weapons held by a resident of a reciprocal state must be honored by this State, provided, that the reciprocal state requires an applicant to successfully pass a criminal background check and a course in firearm training and safety. A resident of a reciprocal state carrying a concealable weapon in South Carolina is subject to and must abide by the laws of South Carolina regarding concealable weapons. SLED shall maintain and publish a list of those states as the states with which South Carolina has reciprocity.
  2. Notwithstanding the reciprocity requirements of sub item (1), South Carolina shall automatically recognize concealed weapon permits issued by Georgia and North Carolina.
  3. The reciprocity provisions of this section shall not be construed to authorize the holder of any out-of-state permit or license to carry, in this State, any firearm or weapon other than a handgun.

(4) “Proof of training” means an original document or certified copy of the document supplied by an applicant that certifies that he is either:

(a) a person who, within three years before filing an application, has successfully completed a basic or advanced handgun education course offered by a state, county, or municipal law enforcement agency or a nationally recognized organization that promotes gun safety. This education course must include, but is not limited to:

  • (i) information on the statutory and case law of this State relating to handguns and to the use of deadly force;
  • (ii) information on handgun use and safety;
  • (iii) information on the proper storage practice for handguns with an emphasis on storage practices that reduces the possibility of accidental injury to a child; and
  • (iv) the actual firing of the handgun in the presence of the instructor;

(b) a person who demonstrates any of the following must comply with the provisions of sub item (a)(i) only:

  • (i) a person who demonstrates the completion of basic military training provided by any branch of the United States military who produces proof of his military service through the submission of a DD214 form;
  • (ii) a retired law enforcement officer who produces proof that he is a graduate of the Criminal Justice Academy or that he was a law enforcement officer prior to the requirement for graduation from the Criminal Justice Academy; or
  • (iii) a retired state or federal law enforcement officer who produces proof of graduation from a federal or state academy that includes firearms training as a graduation requirement.

(c) an instructor certified by the National Rifle Association or another SLED approved competent national organization that promotes the safe use of handguns;

(d) a person who can demonstrate to the Director of SLED or his designee that he has a proficiency in both the use of handguns and state laws pertaining to handguns;

(e) an active duty police handgun instructor;

(f) a person who has a SLED certified or approved competitive handgun shooting classification; or

(g) a member of the active or reserve military, or a member of the National Guard.

SLED shall promulgate regulations containing general guidelines for courses and qualifications for instructors which would satisfy the requirements of this item. For purposes of sub items (a) and (b), “proof of training” is not satisfied unless the organization and its instructors meet or exceed the guidelines and qualifications contained in the regulations promulgated by SLED pursuant to this item.

Sign Requirements.

(A) Notwithstanding any other provision of this article, any requirement of or allowance for the posting of signs prohibiting the carrying of a concealable weapon upon any premises shall only be satisfied by a sign expressing the prohibition in both written language interdict and universal sign language.

(B) All signs must be posted at each entrance into a building where a concealable weapon permit holder is prohibited from carrying a concealable weapon and must be:

  1. clearly visible from outside the building;
  2. eight inches wide by twelve inches tall in size;
  3. contain the words “NO CONCEALABLE WEAPONS ALLOWED” in black one-inch tall uppercase type at the bottom of the sign and centered between the lateral edges of the sign;
  4. contain a black silhouette of a handgun inside a circle seven inches in diameter with a diagonal line that runs from the lower left to the upper right at a forty-five degree angle from the horizontal;
  5. a diameter of a circle; and
  6. placed not less than forty inches and not more than sixty inches from the bottom of the building’s entrance door.

(C) If the premises where concealable weapons are prohibited does not have doors, then the signs contained in subsection (A) must be:

  1. thirty-six inches wide by forty-eight inches tall in size;
  2. contain the words “NO CONCEALABLE WEAPONS ALLOWED” in black three- inch tall uppercase type at the bottom of the sign and centered between the lateral edges of the sign;
  3. contain a black silhouette of a handgun inside a circle thirty-four inches in diameter with a diagonal line that is two inches wide and runs from the lower left to the upper right at a forty-five degree angle from the horizontal and must be a diameter of a circle whose circumference is two inches wide;
  4. placed not less than forty inches and not more than ninety-six inches above the ground;
  5. posted in sufficient quantities to be clearly visible from any point of entry onto the premises.

Issuance of Permits.

(K) A permit holder must have his permit identification card in his possession whenever he carries a concealable weapon. When carrying a concealable weapon pursuant to Article 4 of Chapter 31 of Title 23, a permit holder must inform a law enforcement officer of the fact that he is a permit holder and present the permit identification card when an officer (1) identifies himself as a law enforcement officer and (2) requests identification or a driver’s license from a permit holder. A permit holder immediately must report the loss or theft of a permit identification card to SLED headquarters. A person who violates the provisions of this subsection is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined twenty five dollars.

(B)(1) This section does not apply to a person carrying a concealable weapon pursuant to and in compliance with Article 4, Chapter 31, Title 23; however, the person shall not consume alcoholic liquor, beer, or wine while carrying the concealable weapon on the business’ premises. A person who violates this item may be charged with a violation of subsection (A).

Definitions

(1) “Handgun” means any firearm designed to expel a projectile and designed to be fired from the hand, but shall not include any firearm generally recognized or classified as an antique, curiosity, or collector’s item, or any that does not fire fixed cartridges.

(10) “Luggage compartment” means the trunk of a motor vehicle which has a trunk; however, with respect to a motor vehicle which does not have a trunk, the term “luggage compartment” refers to the area of the motor vehicle in which the manufacturer designed that luggage be carried or to the area of the motor vehicle in which luggage is customarily carried. In a station wagon, van, hatchback vehicle, truck, or sport utility vehicle, the term “luggage compartment” refers to the area behind the rearmost seat.

Unlawful Carrying of Handgun; Exceptions.

It is unlawful for anyone to carry about the person any handgun, whether concealed or not, except as follows, unless otherwise specifically prohibited by law:

(1) regular, salaried law enforcement officers, and reserve police officers of a state agency, municipality, or county of the State, uncompensated Governor’s constables, law enforcement officers of the federal government or other states when they are carrying out official duties while in this State, deputy enforcement officers of the Natural Resources Enforcement Division of the Department of Natural Resources, and retired commissioned law enforcement officers employed as private detectives or private investigators;

(2) members of the Armed Forces of the United States, the National Guard, organized reserves, or the State Militia when on duty;

(3) members, or their invited guests, of organizations authorized by law to purchase or receive firearms from the United States or this State or regularly enrolled members, or their invited guests, of clubs organized for the purpose of target shooting or collecting modern and antique firearms while these members, or their invited guests, are at or going to or from their places of target practice or their shows and exhibits;

(4) licensed hunters or fishermen who are engaged in hunting or fishing or going to or from their places of hunting or fishing while in a vehicle or on foot;

(5) a person regularly engaged in the business of manufacturing, repairing, repossessing, or dealing in firearms, or the agent or representative of this person, while possessing, using, or carrying a handgun in the usual or ordinary course of the business;

(6) guards authorized by law to possess handguns and engaged in protection of property of the United States or any agency of the United States;

(7) members of authorized military or civil organizations while parading or when going to and from the places of meeting of their respective organizations;

(8) a person in his home or upon his real property or a person who has the permission of the owner or the person in legal possession or the person in legal control of the home or real property;

(9) a person in a vehicle if the handgun is:

  • (a) secured in a closed glove compartment, closed console, closed trunk, or in a closed container secured by an integral fastener and transported in the luggage compartment of the vehicle; however, this item is not violated if the glove compartment, console, or trunk is opened in the presence of a law enforcement officer for the sole purpose of retrieving a driver’s license, registration, or proof of insurance; If the person has been issued a concealed weapons permit pursuant to Article 4, Chapter 31, Title 23, then the person also may secure his weapon under a seat in a vehicle, or in any open or closed storage compartment within the vehicle’s passenger compartment; or”
  • (b) concealed on or about his person, and he has a valid concealed weapons permit pursuant to the provisions of Article 4, Chapter 31, Title 23;

(10) a person carrying a handgun unloaded and in a secure wrapper from the place of purchase to his home or fixed place of business or while in the process of changing or moving one’s residence or changing or moving one’s fixed place of business;

(11) a prison guard while engaged in his official duties;

(12) a person who is granted a permit under provision of law by the State Law Enforcement Division to carry a handgun about his person, under conditions set forth in the permit, and while transferring the handgun between the permittee’s person and a location specified in item (9);

(13) the owner or the person in legal possession or the person in legal control of a fixed place of business, while at the fixed place of business, and the employee of a fixed place of business, other than a business subject to Section 16-23-465, while at the place of business; however, the employee may exercise this privilege only after: (a) acquiring a permit pursuant to item (12), and (b) obtaining the permission of the owner or person in legal control or legal possession of the premises;

(14) a person engaged in firearms related activities while on the premises of a fixed place of business which conducts, as a regular course of its business, activities related to sale, repair, pawn, firearms training, or use of firearms, unless the premises is posted with a sign limiting possession of firearms to holders of permits issued pursuant to item (12);

(15) a person while transferring a handgun directly from or to a vehicle and a location specified in this section where one may legally possess the handgun. 

(16) Any person on a motorcycle when the pistol is secured in a closed saddlebag or other similar closed accessory container attached, whether permanently or temporarily, to the motorcycle.

Carrying concealed weapons between automobile and accommodation.

Notwithstanding any provision of law, any person may carry a concealable weapon from an automobile or other motorized conveyance to a room or other accommodation he has rented and upon which an accommodations tax has been paid.

Regulation of ownership, transfer, or possession of firearm or ammunition; discharge on landowner’s own property.

No governing body of any county, municipality, or other political subdivision in the State may enact or promulgate any regulation or ordinance that regulates or attempts to regulate:

(1) the transfer, ownership, possession, carrying, or transportation of firearms, ammunition, components of firearms, or any combination of these things; or

(2) a landowner discharging a firearm on the landowner’s property to protect the landowner’s family, employees, the general public, or the landowner’s property from animals that the landowner reasonably believes pose a direct threat or danger to the landowner’s property, people on the landowner’s property, or the general public. For purposes of this item, the landowner’s property must be a parcel of land comprised of at least twenty-five contiguous acres. Any ordinance regulating the discharge of firearms that does not specifically provide for an exclusion pursuant to this item is unenforceable as it pertains to an incident described in this item; otherwise, the ordinance is enforceable.

Power to Regulate Public Use of Firearms; Confiscation of Firearms or Ammunition.

This article does not affect the authority of any county, municipality, or political subdivision to regulate the careless or negligent discharge or public brandishment of firearms, nor does it prevent the regulation of public brandishment of firearms during the times of or a demonstrated potential for insurrection, invasions, riots, or natural disasters. This article denies any county, municipality, or political subdivision the power to confiscate a firearm or ammunition unless incident to an arrest.

South Carolina CCW FAQ's

Concealed carry permits/licenses are issued by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED).

90 Days The application for a concealed carry permit/license must be processed within 90 days of the application being received.

No, you will need to submit your renewal application on the paper form and mail it in.

You can download the replacement form and follow the instructions.

It usually takes from 45 – 90 days to issue a replacement permit.

No, nothing in the law says you must redo training if your permit has expired for more than 60 days past the expiry date.

If you move to another state your SC permit must be returned to SLED. You can mail it in with a note and your details will be updated.

No, you can leave the training section blank for renewals.

Yes, disabled veterans are exempt from paying any CWP fee. You will need to supply a VA card to confirm your status.

If you are an active member of the military you are exempt from training. For retired members of the military you will only need to do the legal part of the training.

South Carolina CCW Contacts

Law Enforcement Division SLED

Hours


Monday – Friday    9am – 5pm

Saturday                  Closed

Sunday                    Closed

Contact


Address  4400 Broad River Road

City          Columbia, SC29210

Phone     (803) 896-7015