South Carolina Gun Laws

If you’re looking to obtain a legal firearm in South Carolina, here are some facts about South Carolina gun laws.


South Carolina is a shall-issue state with concealed carry permits issued at the state level by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division. Anyone resident of South Carolina at least 21 years old can apply for a concealed carry license or South Carolina Concealed Weapons Permit (CWP).

Is There a Waiting Period to Buy a Gun in South Carolina?

No, there is no waiting period to buy a gun in South Carolina.

Is A Permit Required To Purchase A Handgun In South Carolina?

No, no permit is required to purchased a firearm in South Carolina.

Do You Need To Register Handguns in South Carolina?

No, handguns, rifles and shotguns do not have to be registered in South Carolina.

Who Is Eligible To Obtain a Concealed Carry Permit or Concealed Weapons Permit (CWP) in South Carolina?

Any South Carolina state resident who is at least 21 years of age can apply for a Concealed Carry Permit or Concealed Weapons Permit (CWP).

Is Firearms Training A Requirement in South Carolina For a Concealed Carry Permit or Concealed Weapons Permit (CWP)?

Yes, South Carolina requires an 8-hour, state-approved firearms training course to obtain a concealed carry permit.

What Are The Requirements To Obtain a Concealed Carry Permit or Concealed Weapons Permit (CWP) in South Carolina?

Guidelines to obtain a South Carolina Concealed Carry Permit or Concealed Weapons Permit (CWP):

  • Be at least 21 years old
  • Must be a legal resident of South Carolina
  • Have actual or corrected vision of 20/40
  • Must meet federal law requirements
  • Must complete an approved firearm training course

What Are The Steps To Obtain A Concealed Carry Permit or Concealed Weapons Permit (CWP) in South Carolina?

In South Carolina you need to apply for a Concealed Handgun Permit by downloading an application from the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division website,, or using the online IdentoGo registration system at NOTE: You will need to sign a release authorizing disclosure to the sheriff of any records relating to your mental health, and you will be fingerprinted at the sheriff’s office. You will be notified if your application has been approved.

Step 1: Complete a firearms training course

Step 2: Download and complete an application or fill out an application online

Step 3: When submitting your application you will also need: photocopy of driver’s license or state ID, documentation of firearm training course, application form signed by you and your firearms instructor, SLED CWP Instructor/Student Checklist, and 2 complete fingerprint cards.

Step 4: For paper applications, mail documents to:

CWP Application,

SLED Data Center,

P.O. Box 21398,

Columbia, SC 29221-1398

How Much Does A South Carolina Concealed Carry Permit Cost?

The fee for a South Carolina Concealed Handgun Permit is free.

Does South Carolina Recognize Concealed Carry Pistol Permits From Other States?

Yes, South Carolina recognizes resident permits from states that honor South Carolina permits, however, the reciprocal state requires an applicant to successfully pass a criminal background check and a course in firearm safety.

Is South Carolina a Constitutional Carry State?

No, South Carolina is not a constitutional carry state.

Is South Carolina an Open Carry State?

Yes, open carry in South Carolina is legal for residents with a South Carolina Concealed Weapons Permit (CWP).

Is South Carolina a Stand Your Ground State?

Yes, South Carolina is a Castle Doctrine state. There is no duty to retreat before defending yourself and you have the right to stand your ground.

Are AR-Style and Other Semi-Auto Rifles Legal in South Carolina?

Yes, magazine-fed semi-auto rifles are legal to buy and possess in South Carolina.

Are Standard-Capacity Magazines Allowed in South Carolina?

Yes, in South Carolina, higher capacity magazines are legal.

Does South Carolina Have Gun Storage Laws?

No, South Carolina does not have a gun storage law that specifies how firearms should be stored.

Is South Carolina a Red Flag State?

No, South Carolina is not a Red Flag law state.

DISCLAIMER: provides this information to subscribers and readers, and does not constitute legal advice. Although we attempt to address all areas of gun laws in all states, we make no claims, representations, warranties, promises or guarantees as to the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information disclosed. Gun laws are constantly changing, for legal advice, consult a lawyer in your state.

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Having been trained by many top-shelf handgun, shotgun, AR carbine, and long-range shooting instructors, Robert Sadowski brings a user's perspective to Gun Tests. He has authored and edited 15 books on firearm values, firearm disassembly and assembly, and gun guides. His Book Of Glock (Skyhorse Publishing) debuted as an Amazon #1 New Release and is a must-read for the Glock enthusiast. His latest book, 9MM - Guide to America's Most Popular Caliber (Gun Digest Books), is an indispensable resource on the 9mm and understanding the cartridge's performance for concealed carry, home defense, or competition. Over the past two decades, Sadowski has written for many magazines and websites, including,,, and more. His print work has appeared in Combat Handguns, Ballistic, Real World Survivor, Guns Digest, Guns of the Old West, SHOT Business, and more. He is currently the Treasurer/Secretary of the Glock Collectors Association. After receiving an MA from New York University, he worked for a number of magazine publishers and advertising agencies. Sadowski is a lifelong hunter, competitive shooter, and native of Connecticut. He now lives in North Carolina to take full advantage of our 2nd Amendment privilege.


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