Nonprofit Notes on Permitless Carry in SC

Posted By: GP McLeer For Good Connections,

Permitless Carry is Legal in SC - Here's What You Need to Know

*This post does not provide, nor intend to provide, legal advice, best practice, or guidance for your organization. It is for informational purposes only. Please advise legal counsel for clarity or opinions on your organization's operations.

After being signed by the Governor, H. 3594 "Permitless Carry" (also known as a version of "Open Carry") is now legal in South Carolina.

The short version is this: Anyone 18+ can now legally carry a firearm in public, without training, without a background check, and without concealment. This law is currently now in effect.

Previously, the law had been concealed weapons could be carried openly, with training. 

It is important for nonprofits to have general knowledge of this law as offices, retail spaces, restaurants, event spaces, places of worship, and any other facilities - used or owned by nonprofits - as well as individuals who may engage with your organization in any of these spaces, are subject to this change in law.

Nonprofits in particular may want to take note of the requirements for signage if your organization wishes to not allow firearms on your premises, and where firearms are expressly not permitted. We recommend reading the full bill, which can be found here.

Some key things for nonprofits to know are listed below. There is much more in the bill (linked above), so be sure to read it!

Where a Firearm Cannot be Carried:

  • Courthouse / Courtroom
  • Polling Locations on Election Days
  • Offices or Meetings of Government Bodies
  • School or College Athletic Events
  • School / Daycare / Preschool Facility
  • Places of Worship (unless permission is provided)
  • Hospital or Medical Office (unless permission is provided)
  • Personal Residence / Dwelling of Another Person (unless permission is provided) 
  • Any place clearly marked with a sign prohibiting the carrying of a concealable weapon on the premises. (see note below)

Signage to Prohibit Carrying:

If you wish to post a sign at your place of business, it must adhere to the following requirements:

  • Posted at each entrance into a building where carrying of a concealable weapon is prohibited and must be:

    (1) clearly visible from outside the building;

    (2) eight inches wide by twelve inches tall in size;

    (3) contain the words "NO CONCEALABLE WEAPONS ALLOWED" in black one-inch tall uppercase type at the bottom of the sign and centered between the lateral edges of the sign;

    (4) contain a black silhouette of a handgun inside a circle seven inches in diameter with a diagonal line that runs from the lower left to the upper right at a forty-five-degree angle from the horizontal;

    (5) a diameter of a circle; and

    (6) placed not less than forty inches and not more than sixty inches from the bottom of the building's entrance door.

For Establishments that Serve Alcohol:

For nonprofits that may have an alcohol sales component to your facility (e.g. entertainment venues):

  • Only those drinking are not allowed to knowingly carry a firearm into an establishment that serves alcohol. 
  • Anyone not drinking is allowed to carry. (Unless a sign is posted prohibiting weapons) 

Other Key Notes:

  • Merely carrying a weapon may not be used as "cause" for someone to be stopped by law enforcement.
  • SLED must provide free CWP trainings in each county at least twice a month.

For more, check out this article.