There are four methods for locating South Carolina statutes in print— by citation, by popular name, using the table of contents, and by subject.
You may find relevant South Carolina statutes cited in cases, journal articles, and books, or referenced in the annotations to another statute.
If you know the citation to a South Carolina statute, you can locate it in the print South Carolina Code Annotated by going to the volume that contains the title of the statute and turning to the specific chapter and section cited.
For example, to locate 41-10-50 of the South Carolina Code Annotated, find the volume that contains Title 41 and turn to Chapter 10, Section 50.
Many laws, like South Carolina’s Clean Indoor Air Act, are often referred to by their popular names instead of by citation. The J-Z Index volume, located at the end of the print South Carolina Code Annotated, contains a Popular Names Table that provides an alphabetical list of South Carolina statutes by popular name and their locations in the South Carolina Code Annotated.
For example, the Clean Indoor Air Act of 1990 is listed in the Popular Names Table to the South Carolina Code Annotated below as beginning at Title 44, Chapter 95, Section 10. The et seq. after 44-95-10 is Latin for "and the following."
Once you find a statute that is relevant to your legal issue, it is always a good idea to browse the Table of Contents at the beginning of that title or chapter. Surrounding code sections may contain applicable definitions, procedures that must be followed, or even exceptions to the statute you found.
For example, the table of contents below for the South Carolina's Payment of Wages laws includes a Definitions statute (§ 41-10-10) that may be helpful when researching payment of wages.
If you do not have a citation to a particular South Carolina statute, you will need to research relevant statutes by subject. There are two index volumes designated A-I and J-Z, located at the end of the official print South Carolina Code Annotated.
Each index contains an alphabetical list of topics with references to South Carolina statutes relevant to that topic. If the first topic you look up in the index does not work, the index may refer you to a different topic that is more helpful.
For example, if you look in the J-Z index under "wages" to find the law in South Carolina that requires employers to pay wages to discharged employees, the index directs you to the topic "Compensation and salaries, generally" in the A-I index. In the A-I index below under Compensation and Salaries, you find the relevant statute (§ 41-10-50) under the subtopic "Discharged employees."
There is also an index in the back of each volume of the South Carolina Code Annotated for the title(s) contained in that volume.
The un-annotated South Carolina Code of Laws is accessible for free online through the South Carolina Legislature website. The website allows you to retrieve a statute by citation, browse statutes by title and chapter, and search by keyword or popular name.
Although technically unofficial, this free online version of the South Carolina Code is updated about once a year, after each session of the SC General Assembly.
From its Archives page, you can also browse previous versions of the South Carolina Code back through 2000.