This article discusses South Carolina's ABC Violation Tickets otherwise known as open container of liquor. South Carolina actually has two open container laws - one for beer and wine and the other for liquor.The law makes it illegal to transport any open bottle of liquor in a car or motor vehicle unless it is in the luggage or cargo area.
People usually get charged with this ABC violation at traffic checkpoints, after being pulled over for a traffic infraction or as part of a DUI arrest. It carries a fine and/or up to thirty days in jail.
The catch with this law though is that if someone is convicted - either by paying the fine, pleading guilty\no-contest or being found guilty after a trial their driver's license must be suspended. For a first offense your driver's licence must be suspended for six months. For a second offense one year and for a third offense two years. While the suspension is in place no vehicles are allowed to be registered in your name.
The open container law was changed several years ago incorporating some of the language originally intended to apply for the unlawful transportation of illegal moonshine. It now applies to everyone - even someone who simply tries to drive with a single mixed drink. Originally the Courts and the DMV were unaware of the way the law now applies and for several years no one's license was actually suspended. But starting law year the DMV has begun issuing suspensions related to these ABC violations.
If you have received a ticket for open container in South Carolina there are several options that are available to you. As a South Carolina Criminal Defense Attorney I know the various strategies available to help my clients keep their driver's license after receiving and ABC violation. If you would like to discuss your case with me contact my office at
1-866-252-5789. Initial appointments are provided at no-cost in my office located at 316 South Lake Drive in downtown Lexington.