Copper law revisions eliminate 48 hour permits


Changes made to the South Carolina Copper Law which will affect individuals who buy, sell, and transport nonferrous metals will take effect on December 18. The revised law no longer allows for a 48 hour permit, makes approved permits valid for 2 years and assesses a $10 fee for lost or destroyed permits.

Nonferrous metals are defined as metals not containing significant quantities of iron or steel. Changes to the South Carolina code of laws section 16-17-680 covers secondary metals recycler permit to purchase nonferrous metals; permit to transport and sell nonferrous metals; violations; penalties; records; notice; preemption. A review of the law pertaining to permitting is provided below.

A person or entity who wants to transport or sell nonferrous metals to a secondary metals recycler shall obtain a permit to transport and sell the metal. A permit is valid statewide and expires on the person’s birth date on the 2nd calendar year after the permit is issued, or, if the permittee is an entity, the permit expires on the date of issuance on the 2nd calendar year after the permit is issued. If a person is a resident of SC or an entity is located in SC, the person or entity shall obtain a permit from the Sheriff of the county in which the person resides or has a secondary residence or in which the entity is located or has a secondary business. A Sheriff may not charge a fee for a permit. A Sheriff may charge a $10 fee to replace a permit that has been lost or destroyed. The Sheriff may issue the permit if the person or entity has not been convicted of a violation of 16-11-523, pertaining to unlawfully damaging property for the purpose of obtaining nonferrous metals, or this section; and a person or entity declares on an application provided by the Sheriff that the person or entity is informed of and will comply with the provisions of this section. A permit may be denied, suspended, or revoked at any time if a Sheriff discovers that the information on an application is inaccurate, a person or entity does not comply with the requirements of this section, or a person or entity is convicted of a violation of 16-11-523. There will no longer be a 48 hour permit, and all permits will be issued during regular business hours.

The entire code of laws is available on the internet at SC Judicial.