State Taxes In South Carolina


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South Carolina Income Taxes

Money headed your way? SC Department of Revenue begins issuing tax rebate checks

South Carolina Income Tax Range

Low: 3%

High: 6.5%

Beginning with the 2023 tax year, and each year thereafter until it equals 6%, the top rate will decrease by 0.1% if general fund revenues are projected to increase by at least 5% in the fiscal year that begins during the tax year.

South Carolina Taxation of Social Security Benefits

Social Security benefits are not taxed by the state.

South Carolina Tax Breaks for Other Retirement Income

Taxpayers age 65 or older can exclude up to $10,000 of retirement income . Joint filers can each claim the exemption.

Taxpayers age 65 or older can also deduct $15,000 from all taxable income. However, the deduction must be reduced by the amount of retirement income otherwise excluded.

Military retirement income and Railroad Retirement benefits are fully exempt.

The South Carolina Income Tax

South Carolina collects a state income tax at a maximum marginal tax rate of %, spread across tax brackets. Unlike the Federal Income Tax, South Carolina’s state income tax does not provide couples filing jointly with expanded income tax brackets.

Notably, South Carolina has the highest maximum marginal tax bracket in the United States. You can learn more about how the South Carolina income tax compares to other states’ income taxes by visiting our map of income taxes by state.

Tax brackets in South Carolina are adjusted for inflation each year, which usually results in a small tax increase. Release dates for tax bracket inflation adjustments vary by state, but South carolina generally releases the current year’s brackets after the end of the previous tax year,

There are -968 days left until Tax Day, on April 16th 2020. The IRS will start accepting eFiled tax returns in January 2020 – you can start your online tax return today for free with TurboTax .

South Carolina State Tax Payments

South Carolina has many income tax payment options. Find the option that works best for you below.

Pay with an Electronic Funds Transfer

You can use this payment option when you e-file with us.

Pay with a Credit Card

Visit to pay using a credit card.

Pay by Mail

If mailing your tax return, include your check or money order with your return. Do not submit your payment separately with Form SC1040-V.

If you e-file your tax return, mail in a check or money order with Form SC1040-V.

If you filed an extension, mail in your extension tax payment with Form SC4868.

All payments are due by April 18, 2023 whether or not an extension was filed.

Recommended Reading: How To Amend Tax Return Turbotax

How Your South Carolina Paycheck Works

The reason your paychecks never quite add up to your quoted salary or hourly rate is that your employer withholds some money to pay for taxes. No matter which state you work in, you will need to pay FICA taxes and federal income taxes.

FICA taxes include Social Security and Medicare taxes. Each pay period, 6.2% of your income goes toward Social Security taxes and 1.45% toward Medicare. Your employer matches those amounts so that the total contributions to FICA taxes are double what you pay. If you have income in excess of $200,000 you will also need to pay a Medicare surtax of 0.9%. Your employer does not match this surtax.

While employers usually cover half of workers FICA taxes, you might find yourself responsible for paying the entire sum if you are self-employed or a contract worker. Luckily, if you do have to pay the full FICA taxes, you may be eligible to receive the employer portion in return via a tax deduction. If you’re seeking further guidance with minimizing your tax burden while maximizing your earnings, its always helpful to talk with a financial advisor.

How Income Taxes Are Calculated

South Carolina State Income Tax
  • First, we calculate your adjusted gross income by taking your total household income and reducing it by certain items such as contributions to your 401.
  • Next, from AGI we subtract exemptions and deductions to get your taxable income. Exemptions can be claimed for each taxpayer as well as dependents such as ones spouse or children.
  • Based on your filing status, your taxable income is then applied to the the tax brackets to calculate your federal income taxes owed for the year.
  • Your location will determine whether you owe local and / or state taxes.
  • Last Updated: January 1, 2021

    When Do We Update? – We regularly check for any updates to the latest tax rates and regulations.

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    Is The South Carolina Sales Tax Destination

    South Carolina is a destination-based sales tax state, which meansthat sales tax rates are determined by the location of the buyer when the transaction is completed. This means that, for orders placed via the internet/mail by a customer within South Carolina from a South Carolina vendor, the vendor must collect a sales tax rate applicable at the buyer’s address . This can significantly increase the complication of filing your sales tax return, because different sales tax rates must be charged to different buyers based on their location.

    South Carolina’s Sales Tax By The Numbers:

    South Carolina has ahigher-than-average sales tax, includingwhen local sales taxes from South Carolina’s 118 local tax jurisdictions are taken into account.

    Rankings by Average State + Local Sales Tax:

    Ranked 17th highest by combined state + local sales tax

    Ranked 40th highest by per capita revenue from state + local sales taxes

    Rankings by State Sales Tax Only:

    Ranked 8th highest by state sales tax rate

    Ranked 33rd highest by per capita revenue from the statewide sales tax

    South Carolina has a statewide sales tax rate of 6%, which has been in place since 1951.

    Municipal governments in South Carolina are also allowed to collect a local-option sales tax that ranges from 0% to 3% across the state, with an average local tax of 1.666% .The maximum local tax rate allowed by South Carolina law is 3%.You can lookup South Carolina city and county sales tax rates here.

    This page provides an overview of the sales tax rates and laws in South Carolina. If you are a business owner and need to learn more about things like getting a sales tax permit, filing a sales tax return, or making tax-exempt purchases for resale see the South Carolina Sales Tax Handbook’s Table of Contents above.

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    How You Can Affect Your South Carolina Paycheck

    One way you can affect your take-home pay in South Carolina is through the information recorded on the W-4 form you submit at the beginning of a new job. If you ever want to make a change, you just need to fill out a new W-4.

    If you anticipate having a big tax bill, also consider putting more of your money into pre-tax accounts. The money you put into a 401 or 403 retirement account is deducted from your paycheck before taxes are applied. By increasing your contribution to an account like this, you are lowering your taxable income, which could help you save in taxes.

    Similarly, if your employer offers them, you can make use of a health savings account or flexible spending account . The money you put into these accounts is also pre-tax, and it can be used to pay certain medical-related expenses like copays or some prescriptions. But be aware that only $500 can roll over from year to year in an FSA. That means you could lose money if you end the year with more the $500 in your FSA.

    South Carolina Retirement Taxes Information

    Final Disrespects: A South Carolina judge under investigation (Part 2)

    Lets just get this out of the way now: South Carolina is a great state for stretching your dollar as far as possible. For starters, the cost of living is below the national average. But even beyond that, there are also some great tax benefits to retiring in South Carolina as well:

    • Social Security is not taxable. No taxes on Social Security means that your retirement income goes even further in South Carolina.
    • You can claim up to $10,000 in retirement income deductions. In addition to no taxes on Social Security, those over 65 are also able to deduct up to $10,000 in retirement income, from pensions, IRAs and the like.
    • Plus up to $15,000 in deductions from state income tax. On top of the $10,000 in income deduction, those over 65 can also claim up to $15,000 in deductions from South Carolinas state income tax.

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    Note On Multistate Businesses And Nexus

    Our primary focus here is on businesses operating solely in South Carolina. However, if you’re doing business in several states, you should be aware that your business may be considered to have nexus with those states, and therefore may be obligated to pay taxes in those states. Also, if your business was formed or is located in another state, but generates income in South Carolina, it may be subject to South Carolina taxes. The rules for taxation of multistate businesses, including what constitutes nexus with a state for the purpose of various taxes, are complicated if you run such a business, you should consult with a tax professional.

    South Carolina Retirement Taxes

    Planning your retirement escape? If warm weather, sandy beaches and low taxes are among your priorities, South Carolina may be a good choice. The Palmetto State has some of the countrys most beautiful shoreline, and it’s retirement tax-friendly to boot.

    What makes South Carolina a good choice for budget-conscious seniors? Well, for starters, its cost of living is a bit lower than the national average. On top of that, it provides a full income tax exemption for all Social Security retirement benefits and multiple other deductions for retirement income and total income.

    A financial advisor can help you plan for retirement and other financial goals. SmartAssets free tool matches you with up to three vetted financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If youre ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.

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    South Carolina Tax Deductions

    Income tax deductions are expenses that can be deducted from your gross pre-tax income. Using deductions is an excellent way to reduce your South Carolina income tax and maximize your refund, so be sure to research deductions that you mey be able to claim on your Federal and South Carolina tax returns. For details on specific deductions available in South Carolina, see the list of South Carolina income tax deductions.

    Is Social Security Taxable In South Carolina

    How Are Groceries, Candy, and Soda Taxed in Your State?

    Any Social Security that is included in your adjusted gross income for federal purposes can be subtracted out of your AGI on your South Carolina tax return. This, along with the low cost of living in South Carolina, means it is possible for some seniors in the Palmetto State to survive on Social Security retirement benefits alone.

    Read Also: States With The Least Taxes

    What Is Exempt From Sales Taxes In South Carolina

    Many states have special sales tax rates that apply to the purchase of certain types of goods, or fully exempt them from the sales tax altogether. Here’s how South Carolina taxes five types of commonly-exempted goods:


    OTC Drugs

    For more details on what types of goods are specifically exempt from the South Carolina sales tax see South Carolina sales tax exemptions. To learn more about what types of transactions are subject to the sales tax to begin with, see what purchases are taxable in South Carolina? Taxation of vehicle purchases in particular are discussed in the page about South Carolina’s sales tax on cars.

    Is South Carolina Tax

    South Carolina does not tax Social Security retirement benefits whatsoever. It provides a substantial deduction on all other types of retirement income, including income from retirement accounts. Retirees who own a home in South Carolina will fare especially well, as the state has some of the lowest property taxes in the country.

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    South Carolina Extends Tax Relief For Temporary Work

    On December 21, 2021, the South Carolina Department of Revenue released the South Carolina Information Letter No. 21-31, extending the tax relief regarding withholding and nexus for temporary work-at-home employees due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This temporary relief pertains to a business establishment of nexus for income and sales tax purposes, solely because an employee is temporarily working in a different work location due to COVID-19 and provides guidance with respect to employer withholding requirements. This relief was originally extended to December 31, 2021 and has now been extended through March 31, 2022.

    How High Are Sales Taxes In South Carolina

    Final Disrespects: A South Carolina judge under investigation (Part 1)

    Sales taxes in South Carolina are somewhat higher than the national average. They range from 6% to a maximum of 9%. In most of the state, the rate is either 7% or 8%.

    Prescription drugs and groceries are fully exempt from sales taxes. However, clothing is taxable, as are motor vehicles indirectly through the infrastructure maintenance fee.

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    Many working-class residents will likely find themselves in the state’s highest income bracket , but retirees fair much better thanks to a collection of income tax breaks aimed at seniors. Residents who file a 2021 South Carolina income tax return by February 15, 2023, may also get a tax rebate .

    Unfortunately, sales taxes are on the high end in South Carolina, with an average combined state and local rate of 7.44%.

    South Carolina State And Local Taxes

    Total US government estimated revenue for 2022 is $8.52 trillion, including $4.9 trillion federal, a guesstimated $2.04 trillion state, and aguesstimated $1.58 trillion local.

    Units: By default, values are displayed in billions of dollars. By using a dropdown control in the table heading you can select millions of dollars, percent of GDP, percent of federal total, percent of overall total, dollars per capita of population, and thousand dollars per capita of population.Fiscal Year: The default year displayed is the current US government fiscal year. But you can select any year you want using the dropdown control in the table heading. At the top and bottom of the dropdown only years ending in 0 are shown. Select a year to get close, then select the year you want. You can increase or decrease the year using the yrtext links in the table heading. full screen
    GDP: $285.3 bln State and Local Revenue: By default, state and local revenue are displayed separately. But you can select state’n local and display state and local revenue combined.US or State: By default, the table shows values for governments in the United States overall. But you can select individual states by selecting the state dropdown control in the table heading or the text link right above it.Pie Chart: Click on a pie icon to display a pie chart. You can create a pie chart for federal, state and local, and overall revenue.State of South Carolina

    Income Taxes: Individual and corporate income taxes.

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    Scdor Extends Tax Returns And Payment Deadlines

    The South Carolina Department of Revenue is offering more time to file returns and pay taxes due April 1, 2020June 1, 2020, to assist taxpayers during the COVID-19 outbreak. Tax returns and payments due April 1June 1 will now be due June 1, 2020. Penalty and interest will not be charged if payment is made by June 1. This includes South Carolina Individual Income Taxes, Corporate Income Taxes, Sales and Use Tax, Admissions Tax, and other taxes filed and paid with the SCDOR. The SCDOR is automatically applying this tax relief for all applicable returns and payments you dont need to take any additional action. The SCDOR encourages taxpayers to:

    • Use the SCDORs available online services. Visit MyDORWAY, the free online tax system, at to securely manage your South Carolina taxes from a smartphone or computer.
    • Help protect the spread of COVID-19 by calling or emailing the SCDOR instead of visiting in person. Find the phone number or email address needed at
    • Consider filing your Individual Income Taxes electronically, which is safer and faster. Visit to learn more. After filing, check your refund status online at

    Disclaimer: Please note this is the information that is readily available at this time, it is subject to change so please consult your Withum tax advisor.

    Tax Policy In South Carolina

    South Carolina State Sales Tax On Vehicles / State and Local Sales Tax ...

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    Tax policy in South Carolina
    Tax rates in 2017

    South Carolina generates the bulk of its tax revenue by levying a personal income tax and a sales tax. The state derives its constitutional authority to tax from Article X of the state constitution.

    Tax policy can vary from state to state. States levy taxes to help fund the variety of services provided by state governments. Tax collections comprise approximately 40 percent of the states’ total revenues. The rest comes from non-tax sources, such as intergovernmental aid , lottery revenues and fees. The primary types of taxes levied by state governments include personal income tax, general sales tax, excise taxes and corporate income tax.


  • According to the United States Census Bureau, South Carolina collected $9.55 billion in tax revenue in 2016. The state’s tax revenue per capita was $1,925.
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