The gun laws in South Carolina are a bit stringent compared to other states in the US. The state gun laws operate on a “shall issue” policy. While the Second Amendment can protect the right to own certain arms, some weapons and accessories, like sawed-off shotguns and Teflon-coated ammunition are illegal under South Carolina law. The state does not require a waiting period for prospective gun buyers, but the law does enforce specific eligibility requirements for gun ownership. Along with particular gun laws in South Carolina, the federal government also regulates gun ownership. And it is important to note that where federal and state laws overlap, federal law is the most important. The state allows the issue of concealed carry permits to residents and non-residents, provided non-residents own property in the state.
Open carry in South Carolina
Residents are legally not entitled to open carry in the state of South Carolina, even if you have a concealed handgun permit, you cannot open carry.
Carrying in vehicles
South Carolina doesn’t have gun laws that restrict carrying weapons in a car. Any resident can carry a loaded handgun in their vehicles with a permit in the state of South Carolina. A concealed handgun needs to be hidden and not displayed in an unlocked glovebox or console. If the firearm is displayed 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. Residents need a permit to carry their concealed weapons in their vehicle.
Notifying a police officer
The gun laws in South Carolina state that you are required to inform a law enforcement officer of the firearm you are carrying when you are approached while on official business. You need to carry your permit in case you have a concealed handgun in your possession when an officer requests you to produce it.
Constitutional carry in South Carolina
The South Carolina gun laws do not permit constitutional carry.
In South Carolina, residents are allowed to carry firearms into a restaurant as long as residents do not consume alcohol. Restaurants, in general, will enable you to bring firearms into restaurants as long as it's not at the bar area and also if the restaurant does not have a “no weapons” sign.
Enforcing the “no guns” sign in South Carolina
These signs are legally imposed under the gun laws in South Carolina, and if anyone disregards this sign when they enter private property or business, they will be subjected to legal penalties. It is advisable to avoid entering properties or establishments that display this sign and are considered off limit by the law. If a person refuses to leave the premises while carrying in such venues, that person is breaking the law and is at risk of being charged.
Possessing Machine Guns in South Carolina
In South Carolina, it is illegal for any resident to intentionally or knowingly manufacture, transport, maintain, sell or repair a machine gun.
Unlawful removal of the serial number on the weapon
It is against the law to intentionally change, alter, remove or obliterate the serial number or identification number on any handgun. The possession of a gun with its marks altered, removed or destroyed creates a legal presumption that the possessor committed the offense.
It is prohibited to display or use firearms publicly
In South Carolina, it is against the law to discharge a firearm while under the influence of alcohol or drug controlled substance.
Possession of guns in South Carolina
The gun laws in South Carolina state that there is no requirement of a state permit to possess a rifle, shotgun, or handgun.