Federal minimum age of sale of tobacco products raised
The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) regulates the sale of all tobacco products in retail stores. On December 20, 2019, the President signed legislation to amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, and raise the federal minimum age of sale of tobacco products from 18 to 21 years. It is now illegal under federal law for a retailer to sell any tobacco product – including cigarettes, cigars and e-cigarettes – to anyone under 21. For additional details on this issue or further information regarding federal requirements for tobacco retailers, please consult the
Prior to January 2019, the tax on cigarettes and tobacco products was reported and paid together. As of January 2019, cigarettes and other tobacco products (OTP) are taxed and filed separately. Both are due on or before the 20th day of the month following the period covered.
The tax on cigarettes is now paid with Cigarette Tax Stamps. The SC licensed distributor who first receives untaxed cigarettes for sale or distribution in South Carolina is liable for the Cigarette Tax.
Other Tobacco Products (OTP)
This tax applies to tobacco products, other than cigarettes, sold in South Carolina. All persons selling, purchasing, distributing or importing OTP in South Carolina are required to pay the tax. The tax is only paid once. If product is purchased from a licensed distributor, then the retailer would owe no Excise Tax. The rate on OTP is 5% of the manufacturer's price.