HOW TO GET A CONCEALED WEAPON PERMIT (CWP) IN SC
You will first need to pass a firearms training class taught by an approved instructor. You will then need to forward your class paperwork and a lot of other paperwork to the SC State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) for final approval.
Before you attend the class, you should ensure you:
In order to pass the class, you must:
To apply to SLED for your CWP, you must forward your class paperwork along with:
Before SLED gives you final CWP approval, they will:
In 1996, SC passed the 'Law Abiding Citizens Self-Defense Act' which provided a way for residents to legally carry concealed firearms. The law was written into Title 23, Chapter 31, Article 4 of the SC Code of Laws. You may view this entire law online at SCStateHouse.gov. The specifics of the law are spelled out starting in 23-31-210.
The Chesterfield County Sheriff's Office can help you find a local Concealed Weapon Permit (CWP) class that meets the law's requirements. Upon completion of the class, you will be eligible to submit your CWP application to SLED for final approval. Interested parties can email our Special Ops division and specifically request information on local CWP classes.
IS MY CWP VALID STATEWIDE?
IS MY CWP VALID OUT-OF-STATE?
That depends. Currently, a SC CWP is valid only in those states that have a reciprocity agreement with South Carolina (as long as you abide by that particular state's concealed carry law). Currently, North Carolina is one of those states (and there are a number of others). If you intend to travel to NC with your weapon, you should familiarize yourself with NC laws. SLED maintains a list of all reciprocal states on their website. If that link is broken, however, you should simply Google 'sc concealed weapons permit reciprocity' for the most likely updated SLED page. You may then click on the state to which you intend to travel for more information on their CWP law.
WHAT QUALIFIES AS A 'CONCEALABLE' WEAPON?
A firearm that is less than 12 inches along its greatest dimension AND is carried in a manner that is hidden from public view under normal conditions.
CAN I CARRY MY WEAPON ANYWHERE?
No. Currently, the law prohibits you from carrying a concealed weapon into just about any business that posts its ban on concealed weapons, government-related facility, medical-related facility, athletic event, daycare/pre-school, church, and/or another's private dwelling. Some exceptions apply. Your class instructor should provide more details.
HOW LONG IS MY CWP VALID FOR?
The expiration date will be listed on your CWP. Typically, they are good for at least 4 years as long as you are 1) still a resident of SC and 2) are not - or have not become - legally prohibited from possessing a firearm.
WHAT DO I HAVE TO DO TO RENEW MY CWP?
Submit a renewal application to SLED along with a photocopy of your driver's license, pay the $50 renewal fee (waived for disabled vets and retired law enforcement), and pass another fingerprint and background check.
WHAT OTHER LIMITATIONS ARE THERE ON HOLDING A CWP?
Anytime you are actively carrying a concealed weapon, you must inform a law enforcement officer that you are a CWP holder - and present your CWP itself - when that officer 1) identifies himself as an officer and 2) requests identification from you.