Get Help for Bed Bugs in South Carolina
Residents and businesses sometimes call DHEC for help in eliminating bed bug infestations or resolving bed bug-related disputes. We are happy to provide information, but in most cases, we really don’t have the authority to do more. South Carolina has no general laws, regulations or funding to address bed bug infestations,
We do intervene, however, when bed bug infestations go untreated in state-licensed in-patient healthcare facilities.
Nursing Homes, Hospitals, Other In-Patient Services
South Carolina requires all state-licensed in-patient healthcare facilities to maintain clean, vermin-free environments. The term vermin covers a wide variety of animals and pests including bed bugs, fleas, roaches, lice, rats, mice and other animals and insects.
If you see signs of bed bugs or other pests in an in-patient healthcare facility licensed by DHEC, notify the healthcare facility administrator — in writing, if possible — to give the facility an opportunity to verify and take care of the problem.
If the facility does not take steps to resolve the problem in a timely manner, you have the right to file a complaint with DHEC about the in-patient healthcare facility. You are not required to provide your name. Our staff will investigate your complaint.
Make Sure Pest Control Operator is Licensed
All pest control exterminators in South Carolina must be licensed by the Clemson University Department of Pesticide Regulation. Owners of apartment complexes, hotels, office buildings or other commercial properties who allow unlicensed maintenance staff to apply pesticides are breaking the law.
If you plan to hire a pest control operator:
- Verify that the exterminator has the correct license by asking to see a copy of the license or by typing the exterminator’s last name into the licensing verification search tool operated by the Clemson University Department of Pesticide Regulation.
- You may also want to check to see if the pest control operator has faced enforcement actions within the past three years by typing the exterminator’s last name into the Clemson University Department of Pesticide Regulation enforcement history search tool.
Your Rights as a Renter
To better understand your rights as a renter, see the S.C. Bar Lawline resources on “Landlords, Tenants and Leases: The rights and duties of tenants in South Carolina”. (Scroll down page to find the category.)
If you live in public (federally subsidized) housing and discover a bed bug infestation, mail your landlord a certified letter to report the infestation and request that the problem be addressed within 30 days. If your landlord ignores the problem, you may be able to file a complaint about a negligent landlord with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
For more information contact: (803) 896-0655 Fax (803) 896-0645