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SC Open Carry Law Takes Effect on August 15

SC Open Carry Law Takes Effect on August 15

Next weekend, specifically on August 15, 2021, a new gun law goes into effect in South Carolina, allowing anyone with a concealed weapon permit (CWP) to openly carry their guns.  According to the new law, state residents must still apply for a CWP through South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), there were nearly 419,000 CWPs in South Carolina as of December 31, 2020.  

State residents must still apply for a CWP through SLED and obtain a minimum of eight hours of training. The minimum age for open and concealed carry is 21 years old. 

According to the new open carry law, a person who openly carries is not required to respond to the police if an officer requests to see a gun owner’s permit – unless there is probable cause of a crime. 

Local and state law enforcement officials are preparing for the change. Training provided by the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy—which all officers in the state must go through—now includes scenarios that involve citizens openly carrying firearms. 

The Academy and SLED also created a training video on open carry, which every state law enforcement official must watch by August 13, which is two days prior to the law taking effect. As of August 3, approximately 65 percent of all officers have viewed the training video. 

Remember, possession of a firearm without a CWP is a misdemeanor, punishable by imprisonment for up to one year and/or a maximum fine of $1,000. On the other hand, possession of a stolen handgun is a felony, which carries a maximum prison term of five years. 

If you have been arrested for a violent crime in Lexington or Columbia, contact the Law Office of James R. Snell, Jr., LLC today at (803) 359-3301 for a free case review. Defending clients throughout South Carolina since 2004! 


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