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Can I bring a concealed firearm to another person’s house?

On Behalf of | Jul 5, 2023 | Firearm Charges |

While South Carolina doesn’t require citizens to have a permit to purchase and own firearms, it does observe “shall issue” rules when issuing concealed carry permits. Applicants only need to meet the basic requirements set by state law to receive a concealed carry permit.

Let’s say you have a concealed carry permit. One day, an acquaintance invites you to their home for a party. While you believe this acquaintance can be trusted, you elect to bring a concealed firearm to the party out of caution. You also choose not to inform your acquaintance that you’re bringing a gun.

You arrive at the party, and not long after, a fight breaks out between some of the drunk guests. Despite the violence, you choose not to draw your firearm during the fight. The fighting is severe enough that the party host calls the police to break it up.

However, when it’s your turn to undergo police inspection, they notice your concealed firearm. Suddenly, you’re flagged by officers for bringing a gun to an acquaintance’s home, and after confirming with the host that they’re unaware you had a concealed firearm, they take you away for questioning.

Did you commit a crime?

State law on bringing concealed firearms to another residence

South Carolina law prohibits gun owners from carrying concealed weapons to another person’s home without the homeowner’s permission. This applies to both concealed carry permit holders and those without permits.

Anyone who violates this rule will be charged with a criminal misdemeanor. The individual faces a minimum $1,000 fine and a maximum one-year prison sentence if convicted. The court also has the discretion to revoke the offender’s permit for five years.

If you face this gun charge, know that a criminal conviction prohibits you from purchasing or possessing firearms under federal law. And that’s in addition to the other disadvantages of having a conviction, such as employers shying away from hiring those with criminal records. You should consider challenging the charge with the help of a learned attorney who has experience in gun laws.