South Carolina Concealed Carry Reciprocity Map & Gun Laws

Carry allowed with my South Carolina permit?
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5.2M

STATE POPULATION

25

STATES HONORED

18

MINIMUM AGE TO CC

35

RECIPROCATING STATES

27

ATTORNEYS IN USCCA NETWORK

121

USCCA CERTIFIED INSTRUCTORS

5

YEARS PERMIT VALID

675k

PERMITS ISSUED

10.8%

PERMIT PERCENTAGE

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Summary of South Carolina Gun Laws

South Carolina is a shall-issue, permitless carry state with concealed weapons permits issued at the state level by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED).

There is no permit, background check or firearms registration required when buying a handgun from a private individual.

As of March 7th, 2024, open carry as well as concealed carry is legal without a permit to anyone 18 years of age or older that is not prohibited by law. A “concealable weapon” means a firearm having a length of less than 12″ in length carried openly on one’s person or 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. Areas that are off-limits to concealed carry are also off-limits to open carry. In addition, private properties posted with signs stating ‘No Concealable Weapons Allowed’ prohibit both open and concealed carry.

CWPs are issued to residents, non-residents who own property in the state and military personnel stationed in South Carolina. Concealed carry permits require an 8-hour firearms training course that has been approved by the state. The minimum age to obtain a CWP is now 18 years old. In terms of reciprocity, South Carolina honors resident permits from states that recognize South Carolina permits, provided that the reciprocal state requires an applicant to successfully pass a criminal background check and a course in firearm training and safety. Some areas are off-limits, including schools and courthouses.

Self-Defense

South Carolina is a Castle Doctrine state. A person who is not engaged in an unlawful activity and who is attacked in a place where he or she has a right to be has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground.

A person is presumed to have a reasonable fear of imminent peril of death or great bodily injury to himself or herself or another person when using deadly force that is intended or likely to cause death or great bodily injury to another person if the person:

  • Against whom the deadly force is used is in the process of unlawfully and forcefully entering, has unlawfully and forcibly entered a dwelling, residence or occupied vehicle, or if he removes or is attempting to remove another person against his will from the dwelling, residence or occupied vehicle; and
  • Who uses deadly force knows or has reason to believe that an unlawful and forcible entry or unlawful and forcible act is occurring or has occurred.

A person who is not engaged in an unlawful activity and who is attacked in another place where he or she has a right to be, including but not limited to his place of business, has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his ground and meet force with force, including deadly force, if he or she reasonably believes it is necessary to prevent death or great bodily injury to himself or herself or another person or to prevent the commission of a violent crime.

“Dwelling” means a building or conveyance of any kind, including an attached porch, whether the building or conveyance is temporary or permanent, mobile or immobile, which has a roof over it, including a tent, and is designed to be occupied by people lodging there at night.

“Residence” means a dwelling in which a person resides either temporarily or permanently or is visiting as an invited guest.

“Vehicle” means a conveyance of any kind, whether or not motorized, which is designed to transport people or property.

[S.C. Code Ann. § 16-11-440]

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South Carolina Gun Laws at a Glance

Carry Basics
Constitutional Carry?
Does South Carolina allow constitutional carry?

Yes. As of March 7th, 2024.

Open Carry Permitted?
Is open carry permitted in South Carolina?

Yes, as of March 7th, 2024, open carry is legal without a permit. However, municipalities may temporarily restrict the otherwise lawful open carry of a firearm on public property when a permit is issued for a public protest, rally, fair, parade, festival, or other organized event by posting signs prohibiting concealable weapons. 

[S.C. Code Ann. § 23-31-210(5)]

Open carry is prohibited in city-owned buildings (without written permission from the city manager) during protests, festivals and other events that need a city permit in the city of Columbia.

Gun Permit Licensure?
If South Carolina requires a permit to carry a concealed firearm, how are those permits issued?

South Carolina is a shall-issue state.

Minimum Age for Concealed Carry?
What is the minimum age in South Carolina to get a concealed carry permit?

The minimum to carry concealed in South Carolina is 18.

Weapons Other Than Handguns Allowed?
Can you concealed carry weapons other than handguns in South Carolina with a concealed carry permit (or under permitless carry if applicable)?

No. "Concealable weapon" means a firearm having a length of less than 12" in length carried openly on one’s person or 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.

[S.C. Code Ann. § 23-31-210(5)]

Tasers or Stun Guns?
Is it legal to own a taser or stun gun in South Carolina?

Yes. Stun guns and Tasers are legal to purchase and possess without a permit.

Chemical Spray/Pepper Spray?
Is it legal to buy or use chemical spray/pepper spray in South Carolina?

Yes, it is lawful to possess a container not exceeding 50cc of tear gas for self-defense purposes only.

[S.C. Code Ann. § 16-23-470]

MAGAZINE LIMITS FOR HANDGUNS?
Does South Carolina have magazine capacity restrictions for handguns?

No. South Carolina does not regulate magazine capacity for handguns.

AMMUNITION RESTRICTIONS?
Does South Carolina have ammunition restrictions?

Yes. The possession and sale of teflon-coated ammunition is prohibited.

[S.C. Code Ann. § 16-23-520]

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Carry Locations
CARRY IN VEHICLE?
Can you carry a concealed handgun in a vehicle in South Carolina?

Yes, as of March 7th, 2024, permitless transport or carrying of a firearm in a vehicle on or about one's person, whether openly or concealed, loaded or unloaded, in a manner not prohibited by law is allowed.

[S.C. Code Ann. § 16-23-20]

CARRY AT ROADSIDE REST AREAS?
Can you carry a concealed firearm at roadside rest areas in South Carolina?

Yes, as of March 7th, 2024, you may carry at roadside rest areas without a permit.

[S.C. Code Ann. § 16-23-420(f)]

CARRY IN STATE/NATIONAL PARKS, STATE/NATIONAL FORESTS AND WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREAS (WMAS)?
Can you carry a concealed firearm in state/national parks, state/national forests and Wildlife Management Areas in South Carolina?

Yes, with a South Carolina Concealed Weapons Permit or a license/permit from a state that South Carolina honors. See the National Parks webpage for links to each Park in South Carolina.

[S.C. Code Ann. § 51-3-145(G) and S.C. DNR Public Lands Regulations § 123-203(B)]

STORE IN A VEHICLE IN AN EMPLOYEE PARKING LOT?
Does South Carolina have laws relating to storing firearms in private vehicles in an employee parking lot?

A public or private employer may post signage prohibiting concealed and/or openly carried firearms on the premises of the business or work place. They may also prohibit firearms while using any machinery, vehicle, or equipment owned or operated by the business.

[S.C. Code Ann. § 23-31-220]

CARRY/POSSESS AT A HOTEL?
Can you carry or possess a firearm on hotel property in South Carolina?

An innkeeper may refuse or deny any accommodations, facilities, or privileges of a lodging establishment to a person whom the innkeeper reasonably believes is bringing in property which may be dangerous to other persons including, but not limited to, firearms or explosives. The innkeeper may also eject a person from the lodging establishment premises for that reason. The individual hotel should be contacted to inquire about it's concealed carry policy. See the Handguns at Hotels page for additional information.

[S.C. Code Ann. §§ 45-2-30(A)(1)(4) and 45-2-60)]

CARRY IN BARS/RESTAURANTS THAT SERVE ALCOHOL?
Can you carry a concealed firearm in bars and restaurants that serve alcohol in South Carolina?
Key State Laws
Duty to Inform Officer You're Carrying?
Do you have a duty to inform a police officer that you're carrying a concealed firearm in South Carolina?

No. You do not have a duty to inform a police officer as of March 7th, 2024.

[S.C. Code Ann. § 23-31-215(K)]

DRIVER'S LICENSE LINKED TO CCW LICENSE?
Is my South Carolina driver’s license linked to my South Carolina CCW license?

No.

Preemption?
Does South Carolina have preemption laws related to concealed carry (i.e. Does state law supersede local laws regarding the possession of handguns)?

The state has preemption of firearms laws in South Carolina, except municipalities may regulate the careless or negligent discharge of firearms and may temporarily restrict the otherwise lawful open carry of a firearm on public property when a permit is issued for a public protest, rally, fair, parade, festival, or other organized event by posting signs prohibiting concealable weapons. A governing body putting a restriction on open carry needs to give a specific area, duration, and manner for the restriction and provide prior notice of the restriction. The restriction may also not be extended past the start and end of the event, and an event can’t be scheduled for a length of time to abuse this part of the law.

[S.C. Code Ann. §§ 23-31-510 andS.C. Code Ann. § 23-31-520]

Red Flag Law?
Does South Carolina have a red flag law?

No. South Carolina does not have a red flag law. Although the state has preemption, the City of Columbia passed an ERPO ordinance in September 2019.

[Columbia Ord. No. 2019-056]

Brandishing?
Does South Carolina state law define brandishing?

No definition of brandishing was found in South Carolina law.However, it is unlawful for a person to present or point at another person a loaded or unloaded firearm. This section must not be construed to abridge the right of self-defense or to apply to theatricals or like performances.

[S.C. Code § 16-23-410]

Carry While Using Alcohol or Controlled Substances?
Does South Carolina have laws regarding carrying a concealed firearm while using alcohol or controlled substances?

Not while consuming or under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance.

[S.C Code Ann. § 23-31-400] [S.C. Code Ann. § 16-23-465]

As a responsibly armed American, regardless of the laws in your state, it is unwise to carry while under the influence of any substance that could impair your judgement, slow your reaction times, or impact your decision-making abilities. Any decision you make while carrying a firearm could have life-altering consequences.

NON-RESIDENT PERMITTING?
Does South Carolina issue concealed carry permits to non-residents?

Yes, to non-residents who own property in the state and military personnel stationed in South Carolina.

PUBLIC ACCESS TO CONCEALED CARRY REGISTRY?
Does South Carolina allow the public to access concealed carry registry information through public records law?

South Carolina makes the information available for law enforcement. In addition, the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) must publish a report annually during the first quarter which includes detailed information regarding individuals who have had their permit revoked and the reason for the revocation.

"No Weapons Allowed" Signs Enforced?
Are "No Weapons Allowed" signs enforced in South Carolina? If yes, violating the sign would be considered to be a crime. If no, violating the sign would not be considered a criminal offense.

Yes. All signs must be posted at each entrance into a building where a concealable weapon permit holder is prohibited from carrying a concealable weapon, whether openly or concealed and must read, 'NO CONCEALABLE WEAPONS ALLOWED'.

[S.C. Code Ann. § 23-31-235 and, as of 8/16/2021, § 23-31-220]

Handgun Purchase & Possession
SOUTH CAROLINA PERMIT EXEMPTS FROM BACKGROUND CHECK?
Does my current South Carolina concealed carry permit exempt me from needing a background check when I purchase a firearm?

Yes.

WAITING PERIOD?
Is there a waiting period after purchasing a handgun in South Carolina?

No. There is no waiting period required when buying a handgun in South Carolina.

HANDGUN REGISTRATION?
Do handguns need to be registered in South Carolina?

No. Handgun registration is not required in South Carolina.

MINIMUM AGE TO POSSESS AND TRANSPORT?
What is the minimum age to possess and transport a handgun in South Carolina?

You must be at least 18 years old to possess or transport a handgun in South Carolina.

[S.C. Code Ann. § 16-23-30]

PURCHASE PERMITS?
Is a permit required to purchase a handgun in South Carolina?

No. You are not required to obtain a permit before purchasing a handgun in South Carolina.

BACKGROUND CHECKS FOR PRIVATE GUN SALES?
Are background checks required for private gun sales in South Carolina?

No. Private firearms transfers are not subject to a background check requirement, although federal and state purchaser prohibitions, including age restrictions, still apply. It is recommended that you retain any sales receipts to prove ownership of the gun.

POSSESS A HANDGUN ON MY PRIVATE PROPERTY WITHOUT A PERMIT?
Can I possess/carry a handgun in my home without a permit?

Yes.


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STATE CONSTITUTIONAL PROVISION

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." ARTICLE 1, § 20

South Carolina Concealed Carry Reciprocity With Other States

Which states' permits does South Carolina honor?

Alabama (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Alaska (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Arizona (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Arkansas (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

California (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Colorado (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Connecticut (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Delaware (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

District of Columbia (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Florida (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Georgia (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Hawaii (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Idaho (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Illinois (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Indiana (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Iowa (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Kansas (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Kentucky (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Louisiana (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Maine (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Maryland (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Massachusetts (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Michigan (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Minnesota (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Mississippi (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Missouri (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Montana (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Nebraska (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Nevada (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

New Hampshire (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

New Jersey (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

New Mexico (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

New York (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

New York City (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

North Carolina (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

North Dakota (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Ohio (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Oklahoma (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Oregon (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Pennsylvania (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Puerto Rico (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Rhode Island (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

South Dakota (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Tennessee (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Texas (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Utah (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Vermont (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Virginia (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Washington (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

West Virginia (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Wisconsin (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Wyoming (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

South Carolina honors resident permits from some states, provided that the state requires an applicant to successfully pass a criminal background check and a course in firearm training and safety.  The minimum age is 18 years old. 


Other States' Reciprocity With South Carolina

Which states honor permits from South Carolina?

Alabama (permitless carry, at least 19 years old)

Arkansas (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Idaho (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Indiana (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Minnesota

Montana (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Nevada

New Hampshire (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

New Mexico

North Carolina

North Dakota (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

South Dakota (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Vermont (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Virginia

Wisconsin

Note: Firearms must be carried in accordance with the laws of the state you are visiting. Be sure to check the laws of the other state before traveling there with your firearms.


States That Have Restricted Reciprocity with South Carolina

South Carolina offers resident and non-resident (people who own property in the state and military personnel stationed in South Carolina) permits. If indicated with “Resident only” below, that state only honors South Carolina resident permits (and not those issued to non-residents).

Alaska (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Arizona (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Florida (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Georgia (Permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Iowa (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Kansas (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Kentucky (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Louisiana (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Maine (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Michigan (at least 21 years old and resident permits only)

Mississippi (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Missouri (permitless carry, at least 19 years old,18 for military)

Nebraska (Permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Ohio (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Oklahoma (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Tennessee (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Texas (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Utah (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

West Virginia (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Wyoming (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)


Permitless Carry States

Alabama (permitless carry, at least 19 years old)

Alaska (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Arizona (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Arkansas (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Florida (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Georgia (Permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Idaho (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Indiana (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Iowa (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Kansas (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Kentucky (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Louisiana (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Maine (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Mississippi (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Missouri (permitless carry, at least 19 years old,18 for military)

Montana (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Nebraska (Permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

New Hampshire (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

North Dakota (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Ohio (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Oklahoma (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

South Dakota (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Tennessee (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

Texas (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Utah (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Vermont (permitless carry, at least 18 years old)

West Virginia (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

Wyoming (permitless carry, at least 21 years old)

*PC-18 = permitless carry if at least 18 years old

*PC-21 = permitless carry if at least 21 years old

Permitless carry includes constitutional carry states as well as states where an individual must meet certain qualifications, e.g., no DUIs in the last 10 years, in order to legally carry (Tennessee). Each state determines the requirements and any limitations on the carry of firearms. Check each state’s page for more information and any restrictions that may apply.


South Carolina Concealed Carry License Information

Residency Changes:

Moving to South Carolina and interested in applying for a resident permit? How soon can you apply?South Carolina issues permits to residents, non-residents who own property in the state and military personnel posted in South Carolina only. You can apply for your permit once you can provide proof of either residency or that you own property in the state.

Moving from South Carolina and have a South Carolina resident permit? Does that permit transfer to your new state? Is there a grace period during which your South Carolina permit remains valid?If a person with a South Carolina concealed weapons permit establishes residency in another state, you must surrender your permit to SLED.

Requirements:

An applicant must:

  • Be at least 18 years old;
  • Have completed an approved firearms training class must have completed a basic or advanced handgun training course within three years of application or meet an exemption;
  • Reside in South Carolina, or if a resident of another state, submit proof you own property in South Carolina;
  • Not have been convicted of a violent crime that is a felony;
  • Have actual or corrected vision of 20/40;
  • Not, by order of a circuit judge or county court judge of South Carolina, been adjudged unfit to carry or possess a firearm; and
  • Meet federal law requirements.

*Consult with an attorney if you have any questions about your eligibility. If you don’t have an attorney, you can find one by contacting the State Bar of South Carolina.

Name/Address Changes:

Any change of permanent address must be communicated in writing to SLED within 10 days of the change free of charge. SLED will then issue a new permit with the new address. A permit holder’s failure to notify SLED in accordance with this subsection constitutes a misdemeanor punishable by a $25 fine. The original permit remains in force until receipt of the corrected permit identification card by the permit holder, at which time the original permit must be returned to SLED.

You may request a replacement CWP using the online system.  Once you have accessed the SCCWP Duplicate/Renewal link provided by IdentoGo you will have the option to update your information as intended and SLED will be prompted to update your information as requested in our system and then will print your new credential and mail it to you. Once received you must shred/destroy your old credential. If you would like to complete a paper Duplicate/Replacement, you may do so by following the directions stated using the CWP Replacement form.

Lost/Stolen Permits:

You may request a replacement CWP using the online system.  Once you have accessed the SCCWP Duplicate/Renewal link provided by IdentoGo you will have the option to update your information as intended, pay the $5 fee required to process the transaction, and SLED will be prompted to update your information as requested in our system and then will print your new credential and mail it to you. If you would like to complete a paper Duplicate/Replacement, you may do so by following the directions stated using the CWP Replacement form.

Fees:

Initial Permit and Renewals are free of charge.

Valid For:

5 years

Processing Time:

90 days

Application:
Non-Resident Concealed Carry Permits:

Non-residents who own property in the state and military personnel posted in South Carolina may apply for a non-resident permit. The process is the same as for residents.


South Carolina Concealed Carry Permit Application Process

How to Apply for a South Carolina Concealed Carry Permit


Firearms Training Requirements in South Carolina


As of March 7th, 2024, SLED is required to conduct FREE training, twice monthly for anyone that wishes to attend. 

Firearms training requires the applicant to demonstrate a proficiency in both the use of handguns and state laws pertaining to handguns. Applicants for an initial permit after August 15, 2021, must complete an eight-hour handgun education course offered by a state, county, or municipal law enforcement agency or a nationally recognized organization that promotes gun safety within the last three years. The course must include:

  • Statutory and case law of the state relating to handguns and the use of deadly force
  • Handgun use and safety
  • Proper storage practice for handguns, with an emphasis on storage practices that reduce the possibility of accidental injury to a child
  • Properly securing a firearm in a holster
  • ‘Cocked and locked’ carrying of a firearm
  • How to respond to a person who attempts to take your firearm from your holster
  • De-escalation techniques and strategies
  • The actual firing of the handgun in the presence of an instructor, with a minimum of 25 rounds fired

Exemptions: In accordance with South Carolina State law, active duty military and members of the reserve, and National Guard members are exempt from all CWP training. Retired/former military members and retired law enforcement must complete only the legal aspects portion of the CWP training by a certified South Carolina CWP instructor.

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South Carolina Concealed Carry Permit Renewal Process

How to Renew a South Carolina Concealed Carry Permit


Law Enforcement Officers (LEO)/Retired LEOs

Law enforcement officers (LEOs) and Retired LEOs (RLEOs) may choose to carry under the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA), often referred to as HR 218. Under 18 U.S. Code §§ 926B & 926C, qualified LEOs and qualified retired LEOs, or those separated from service in good standing, can carry a concealed firearm in any jurisdiction in the United States, regardless of state or local laws, with some exceptions. For details check out our Federal Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA) page.

Per S.C. Code Ann. § 23-31-600, qualified RLEOs may carry under LEOSA with an identification card and proof of annual firearms qualification. The agency or department must provide the qualified retired law enforcement officer with the opportunity to qualify to carry a firearm under the same standards for training and qualification for active law enforcement officers to carry firearms. Out-of-state RLEOs may contact local police/sheriff for annual qualification.


South Carolina Location Restrictions

WHERE CAN I CARRY A CONCEALED FIREARM IN SOUTH CAROLINA?
  • Carry in bars/restaurants that serve alcohol? Yes, unless posted and provided you do not consume any alcohol.
  • Carry in my vehicle without a permit/license? Yes
  • Carry in roadside rest areas? Yes.
  • Carry in state/national parks, state/national forests, and WMAs? Yes.
  • Carry on public transportation? No.
  • Carry in the buildings and grounds of places of worship that are leased to a church? As of August 15, 2021, those areas are not considered a school during the hours that the church has the use and enjoyment of the school property. Therefore, a valid permit holder may carry concealed or openly carry in a church during church services or official church activities in churches located on leased premises of an elementary or secondary school (although not during any time students are present for a curricular or extracurricular school-sponsored activity), only upon express permission given by the appropriate church official or governing body. [S.C. Code Ann.16-23-232]
WHERE CAN'T I CARRY A CONCEALED FIREARM IN SOUTH CAROLINA?
Places off-limits even with a permit/license
  • Any private or public school, college, university, technical college or other post-secondary institution without the express permission of the authorities in charge (except CWP permit holders can leave their firearm properly secured in a locked motor vehicle and is secured in a closed glove compartment, closed console, closed trunk, or in a closed container secured by anintegral fastener and transported in the luggage compartment of the vehicle); and
  • Any publicly owned building or property without permission from persons in charge (except CWP permit holders can leave their firearm properly secured in a vehicle).

[S.C. Code Ann. § 16-23-420]

  • Any elementary or secondary school property (except CWP permit holders can leave their firearm properly secured in a vehicle) [S.C. Code Ann. § 16-23-430];
  • School or college athletic event not related to firearms;
  • Day care or preschool facility; 
  • Office of, or the business meeting of, the governing body of a county, public school district, municipality or special-purpose district;
  • Law enforcement office or facility;
  • Detention or correctional facility;
  • Courthouse or courtroom;
  • Polling place on election days;
  • Church or other established religious sanctuary, unless express permission is given the appropriate church official or governing body [S.C. Code Ann. § 23-31-232].
  • Hospital, doctors office, medical clinic or any building in which medical services are performed (unless given permission by employer); and
  • Private places clearly marked with a sign prohibiting the carrying of a concealable weapon on the premises.

[S.C. Code Ann. § 23-31-215(M)]


FAQ: South Carolina Concealed Carry Questions

WEAR A COVID MASK & CARRY?
I can legally carry a concealed firearm in South Carolina, but can I wear a COVID 19 protective mask while carrying concealed?

SLED issued the following statement, “There is no South Carolina Concealed Weapons Permit (CWP) law that prohibits a South Carolina CWP holder from wearing a mask to comply with a city or county health ordinance or to help stop the spread of COVID-19 while carrying a concealed weapon in South Carolina.”

CARRY WHILE GUN HUNTING?
Can you concealed carry while shotgun/rifle hunting in South Carolina?
CARRY WHILE BOW HUNTING?
Can you concealed carry while bow hunting in South Carolina?

Yes, persons who have a CWP pursuant to SC-31-205 may possess a handgun while on any WMA. During a primitive weapons season (archery or muzzleloader), a handgun may not be used to take or attempt to take game.

[SC Hunting and Fishing Reg Guide]

HUNTER HARASSMENT LAW?
Is there a Hunter Harassment Law in South Carolina?

Yes. It is unlawful for a person willfully to impede or obstruct another person from lawfully hunting, trapping, fishing, or harvesting marine species. 

[S.C. Code Ann. § 50-1-137]

WHAT ARE THE KNIFE LAWS IN SOUTH CAROLINA?

It is legal to own or open carry any kind of knife in South Carolina. It is legal to conceal carry any type of knife, so long as you do not use the knife to commit or aid in the commission of a crime. Knives are not allowed on elementary or secondary school property and counties and municipalities may have blade limits. 

[SC Code Ann. §§ 16-23-460 and 16-23-430]


South Carolina Gun Laws Updates

2024-03-07
Added Constitutional Carry changes to multiple sections including Summary, Carry Basics, Carry Locations, and Location Restrictions.
2021-09-20
Added information on open carry in Columbia in At A Glance table
2021-08-16
Updated info on page based on HB-3094 going into effect
2021-05-19
Added info on driver's license link to permit in At A Glance table
2021-05-19
Updated info on training requirements based on HB-3094 in Required Training section
2021-05-18
Updated info on permit fees based on HB-3094 in the Permit Information section
2021-05-18
Updated information on church carry on school premises based on HB-3094 in locations section
2021-05-18
Updated information on preemption to At A Glance table based on HB-3094
2021-05-18
Updated information on open carry in the Summary and At A Glance table based on HB-3094

Did We Miss Something?

Here at the USCCA, it is our mission to provide responsible gun owners with the tools they need to be educated and trained. Our team is constantly working to provide you with the most up-to-date and comprehensive list of self-defense laws available for every state.

If you have any questions that you don’t see answered here — let us know! Just email support@uscca.com and we will be sure to get your question resolved. Your feedback matters to us, and we appreciate you helping to make this page the best possible resource for responsible gun owners!

Permit numbers were obtained from the Crime Prevention Resource Center’s publication entitled, “Concealed Carry Permit Holders Across the United States.” Numbers include resident and non-resident permits for those states that issue both.

The information contained on this website is provided as a service to USCCA, Inc. members and the concealed carry community, and does not constitute legal advice. Although we attempt to address all areas of concealed carry laws in all states, we make no claims, representations, warranties, promises or guarantees as to the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information disclosed. Legal advice must always be tailored to the individual facts and circumstances of each individual case. Laws are constantly changing, and as such, nothing contained on this website should be used as a substitute for the advice of a lawyer.

If you have any questions regarding USCCA Membership, Delta Defense, handguns laws or the lawful process of carrying concealed, please contact the award-winning Delta Defense Customer Engagement Team.