South Carolina Marijuana Laws
South Carolina State Information Page
- Not Decriminalized
- CBD oil and low THC medical marijuana are approved for severe epilepsy
- Possession is not allowed; will change for patients if the medical marijuana bill is passed.
- Cultivation is illegal; Trafficking is illegal
South Carolina’s current law has a very limited CBD oil medical program and is one of thirteen states in the US that have not legalized marijuana for medical use. However, this could be the year for that to change.
SC senators passed the Compassionate Care Act in February of 2022 to legalize medical marijuana. However, according to Governor Henry Mcmaster, the short answer is it is just too early to tell if it goes through.
Legislation is close to the finish line to make recreational and medical marijuana legal for up to twenty-eight grams and to legalize the use, possession, and commercial sale of marijuana for adult use.
This law would also legalize medical marijuana program and such treatment to those with health conditions like multiple sclerosis, PTSD, wasting syndrome, ulcerative colitis, and severe nausea.
State Laws and Offenses
Here’s a current list of penalties for possession, sale, and distribution of marijuana, concentrate, or paraphernalia in South Carolina.
- Marijuana is a Schedule IV drug in the state department of South Carolina.
- Cannabis is still considered a Schedule I Controlled substance and illegal under federal law
- An adult possessing of one ounce or less is a Misdemeanor, 30 days jail time, and a 200 USD fine
- Sales of any cannabis drug is a Felony; penalties range from 5 to 25 years on a third offense and 5,000 USD to 200,000 USD depending on the pounds
- Cultivation and trafficking of any marijuana are against the law and a first offense Felony; penalties range from 5 to 25 years for a second offense with a mandatory sentence and 5,000 USD to 200,000 USD depending on the pounds.
- There are those with licensure for growing hemp now that it is federally legal.
- Possession of drug paraphernalia for recreational marijuana use will result in a civil citation and a maximum 500 USD fine since the decriminalization bill passed.
- A person in possession of 10 ounces or less of concentrate is a Misdemeanor with up to a 500 USD fine. That penalty increases significantly when operating a motor vehicle or with intent to sell.
Patients diagnosed with Lennox Gastaut Syndrome, Dravet Syndrome, or “any other severe form of epilepsy that can’t be treated by traditional medical therapies” if the patients physician concludes that they can benefit from medical cannabidiol use.
South Carolina marijuana DUI laws
Here are the penalties in Illinois for operating a motor vehicle under the influence:
- A first offense can result in a misdemeanor and carries a year of driving revocations, a mandatory minimum fine of 500 USD, and 100 hours of community service.
- The second offense can result in a Misdemeanor with a mandatory minimum of five days of imprisonment, 240 hours of community service, up to a 2,500 USD fine, and a minimum five-year suspended license.
- The third offense can result in a felony with up to thirty months of imprisonment, extending up to seven years for subsequent offenses, and a maximum fine of 25,000 USD.
South Carolina marijuana growing laws
You can only grow cannabis if you have a Medical Cannabis Card. You must be 21 years or older and can grow up to 5 cannabis plants in your home, out of sight from the public.
South Carolina public consumption laws
Illinois state law prohibits the use of cannabis in a public place, including for medical patients.
No marijuana may be used in the following locations:
- School properties
- Public transportation
- Motor Vehicles
- Public parks
- Private residences (unless you have written approval by the property owner)
South Carolina city specific laws
The laws listed here are for the state. Cities, counties, schools, universities, and employers may set their own rules and consequences. Be sure to check how marijuana laws differ in each county or town before you use.
Seventy-two percent of South Carolina residents support the decriminalization and legalization of marijuana for recreational use.
Medical marijuana is not legal, so you are unable to use a medical marijuana card in South Carolina; however, legislation is pending in 2022 to legalize it fully for recreational use.
Not for marijuana in South Carolina, only hemp. A few hemp dispensaries across the state of South Carolina sell hemp CBD-infused edibles, tinctures, cannabis flowers, and more.
Yes. CBD derived from the hemp plant is legal in South Carolina if it has under 0.3% THC due to the passing of the Farm Bill of 2018 and the updating of hemp laws.
Under these laws, consumption of CBD products with 0.9% THC or less is legal for people who have epilepsy but is not manufactured within the state. It is however sold in dispensaries in North Charleston and a few other cities.
Industrial hemp may be available as a smokable product in South Carolina, but many residents and business owners have been given detailed legal advice to avoid purchasing raw hemp until the law on marijuana is updated.
Cannabis Policy Reform Timeline
1937: The federal Marijuana Tax Act placed a halt on South Carolina’s booming industrial hemp cultivation.
2014: CBD is legalized under a medical cannabis bill- registered trademarks called “Julian’s Law” that was sponsored by Tom Davis and other clients. There are CBD dispensaries in Mount Pleasant, Goose Creek, North Charleston, and Moncks Corner for medical cannabis patients.
2017: Cultivation and use of industrial hemp are re-legalized with permits required for environmental control.
2019: The legislation for medical marijuana legalization via the Compassionate Care Act was introduced for the first time but stalled in 2020 due to the COVID pandemic
2022: In February of this year, the Senate held a second reading and passed the medical marijuana bill called Compassionate Care Act, and it’s set to go to the House.
Things to Consider in 2022:
- Legalization and decriminalization of recreational and medical cannabis are currently pending legislation in South Carolina, as well as allowing veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder to use marijuana under state law.
- House Speaker Jay Lucas has decided to step down from his leadership role this year and does not support the medical marijuana bill. Due to the attorney-client relationship, his lawyer will now be speaking on his client’s behalf in regards to the departure.
Some of the Current Cannabis Bills in South Carolina
Learn more about Cannabis legalization in South Carolina: