What to do if you think a business is price gouging in SC

The SC Attorney General is looking into whether a state of emergency should be declared to prevent gas price gouging.

The release the following statement:

In the aftermath of last week’s storm in Texas, our office is continuing to monitor its effect on gas prices in South Carolina. While it’s true you are paying more at the pump, the simple rise in the price of gasoline does not equal price gouging under state law. Price fluctuations are a normal part of the free market.

However, South Carolina does have a law against price gouging (SC Code § 39-5-145) that takes effect under very specific circumstances. Run-ups in price, even those that seem large, may be justified by market forces in our competitive system. But if you feel like you are the victim of price gouging there are certain steps that you can take to help our office investigate. Please do the following:

1. Note the time, place, address, and name of the gas station
2. Note the price you paid
3. Note any prices nearby and get the same information on those stations
4. Take pictures that identify the station, along with the price
5. Provide your name and contact information

Our office will need that information in order to conduct a thorough investigation. Please email any examples or documentation to pricegouging@scag.gov or call 803-737-3953 and leave a message if you have witnessed a likely violation.