South Carolina Gun Permit

South Carolina Gun Permit: Laws, Cost, Restrictions, & FAQs

If you’re considering obtaining a gun permit for concealed carry of firearms in South Carolina, it’s essential to understand the state’s regulations and requirements before you proceed. This guide will walk you through the process, from eligibility criteria to application procedures and reciprocity agreements.


South Carolina takes its gun permit regulations seriously, ensuring the safety and responsibility of firearm owners. Obtaining a gun permit is a regulated process governed by state laws. Whether you’re a resident or a non-resident property owner in the state, understanding the requirements and steps involved is crucial.

South Carolina Gun Permit Summary

South Carolina operates as a shall-issue state for pistol license applications, with the state Law Enforcement Division overseeing the process. It’s important to note that South Carolina doesn’t issue purchase permits for buying firearms. Instead, the focus is on concealed carry permits, which grant individuals the right to carry firearms discreetly.

How to Get a Gun Permit in South Carolina

To apply for a gun permit in South Carolina, you need to meet several key requirements:

  • You must be at least twenty-one years old.
  • You must be a resident of South Carolina or a non-resident property owner.
  • Successful completion of a South Carolina firearm training course is mandatory.
  • You must have legal rights to possess firearms, with no felony convictions or violent crime history.
  • Your vision must not be impaired, ensuring safe handling and use of firearms.
  • You must not have a court order restricting firearm possession.
  • Compliance with federal law requirements for gun permits is essential.
See also  South Carolina Constitutional Carry

South Carolina Permit Laws

South Carolina prohibits open carry of firearms, regardless of whether you possess a pistol permit. Machine guns, large-capacity firearms, and military weapons require federal licensing before possession. Machine guns are defined as firearms that can automatically fire more than once with a single trigger pull. Additionally, the use of Teflon-coated ammunition is prohibited in the state.

South Carolina Pistol Permit Requirements

Meeting the prerequisites for obtaining a gun permit in South Carolina involves the following:

  • Age: You must be at least twenty-one years old.
  • Residency: Residency in South Carolina or property ownership is required.
  • Firearm Training: Completion of a recognized South Carolina firearm training course is mandatory.
  • Criminal Record: No felony convictions or violent crime involvement.
  • Vision: Unimpaired vision for safe firearm handling.
  • Court Orders: Absence of court orders prohibiting firearm possession.
  • Federal Law Compliance: Meeting federal law requirements for gun permits.

Different Types of Gun Permits in South Carolina

South Carolina issues various firearm permits, including:

  • State permit to purchase long guns: Not issued.
  • State permits to purchase handguns: Not issued.
  • State permit to open carry: Prohibited.
  • State permits to conceal carry long guns: Not issued.
  • State permits to conceal carry handguns: Issued for concealed carry of handguns.

Gun Permit Application and Renewal Law

Applying for a South Carolina pistol permit involves these steps:

  1. Complete a Firearm Training Course: Enroll in a recognized South Carolina firearm training class.
  2. Download Application Form: Review and download the concealed carry guide and application form.
  3. Submit Application: Physically submit the application, register online, or mail it.
  4. Submit Necessary Documents: Include required documents such as ID, training certificate, fingerprints, checklist, and fee.
  5. Military Members and Veterans: Active duty, retired, and honorably discharged military personnel have exemptions.
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For permit renewal, a mail renewal notice is sent 90-120 days before expiration. Expired permits require a paper renewal application and an updated driver’s license.

Cost of Getting a Gun License in South Carolina

The initial and renewal permit application fee in South Carolina is fifty dollars.

Gun Permit Reciprocity with South Carolina

South Carolina recognizes pistol permits from certain states, allowing possession in accordance with its laws. Reciprocity states include Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, and more. Some states accept South Carolina pistol permits, while others have restrictions.

Relevant Gun Laws, Permits, and Legislation

South Carolina’s gun laws cover possession in private vehicles, roadside areas, state parks, and bars/restaurants. Certain conditions apply, and compliance with regulations is crucial.

In conclusion, obtaining a gun permit in South Carolina involves meeting specific requirements, completing necessary training, and adhering to state laws. Understanding the permit process, fees, reciprocity agreements, and relevant gun laws ensures responsible firearm ownership. Remember to stay informed and stay safe.


Obtaining a gun permit for concealed carry in South Carolina is a regulated process aimed at ensuring the safety and responsibility of firearm owners. As a shall-issue state, South Carolina grants pistol permits to eligible individuals who meet the age, residency, and training requirements.

Understanding the laws and regulations surrounding gun permits is essential for responsible firearm ownership. It’s crucial to complete a recognized firearm training course, provide the necessary documentation, and adhere to federal and state law requirements. Additionally, applicants must have a clean criminal record and meet specific vision and court order criteria.

Once you obtain a pistol permit, you have the privilege of concealed carry within the state, ensuring your personal safety and security. However, it’s essential to remember that open carry is not permitted in South Carolina.

See also  South Carolina Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW)

Remember that responsible firearm ownership goes hand in hand with understanding and abiding by the law. Keep yourself updated on any changes in gun regulations and continue to prioritize safety in all situations.


Q1. Do I Need a Permit to Conceal Carry Firearms?

Yes, a pistol permit is necessary for concealed carry.

Q2. How Long is the South Carolina Gun Permit Valid?

The pistol license is valid for five years.

Q3. Can Non-Residents Apply for Gun Permits?

Non-resident property owners and military members stationed in South Carolina can apply.

Q4. How Can I Change the Name/Address on My Gun License?

Notify law enforcement within ten days of change and pay five dollars.

Q5. What to Do if My Permit is Lost/Stolen?

Apply for a replacement with a five-dollar fee.

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