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        Board Phone:(803) 896-4580
        Administrator:Molly Price
        Board Staff:Sherri Moorer
        Advice Counsel:   Hardwick Stuart   **
        Directions:110 Centerview Dr, Columbia SC

**The Office of Advice Counsel is responsible for
providing legal advice to all Boards, Commissions
and Panels. These attorneys do not provide legal
advice to parties outside LLR.

Board of Landscape Architectural Examiners

Frequently Asked Questions

Landscape Architect Registration Examination (LARE)

Q. How do I apply to take the LARE?

A. The SC Board of Landscape Architectural Examiners no longer pre-approves exam candidates. Candidates can go directly to to set up an account to begin the registration process for the exam.

Important note: Candidates registering for the LARE will be required to establish a CLARB Council Record prior to registering for the exam. Please note that CLARB requires three (3) professional references, but the Board requires five (5) professional references. Candidates can either:

  • Put all five (5) references on the Council Record; or
  • Put three (3) references on the Council Record, and submit the additional two (2) references directly to the Board upon completing the exam.

Q. Are there state sections required for the exam in South Carolina?

A. No. South Carolina only requires that candidates pass the four (4) parts of the exam:

Section 1 – Project and Construction Administration
Section 2 – Inventory and Analysis
Section 3 – Design
Section 4 – Grading, Drainage and Construction Documentation


Q. What is the experience requirement for licensure in SC?

A. There are four methods to apply for licensure in South Carolina, as detailed below:

Method 1: Accredited degree in landscape architecture; two years of varied landscape architectural experience; and pass CLARB – LARE.

Method 2: Non-accredited landscape architecture degree or four-year degree in related program; five years of varied landscape architectural experience; and pass CLARB – LARE.

Method 3: Reciprocity. Applicant must hold a license to practice landscape architecture issued upon examination in a state or jurisdiction with requirements substantially equivalent to or more stringent than those of this state. This requirement did not change with the new legislation.

Method 4: CLARB Certification. Applicant must submit certification documents from the Council of Landscape Architect Registration Boards (CLARB) verifying qualifications for licensure.

Q. Do I have to send a copy of my social security card?

A. Yes. The Department requires that all applicants send a copy of their Social Security Card and driver’s license, passport, or other state-issued, photo identification as part of the Verification of Lawful Presence.

Q. Who is responsible for sending out the reciprocity verification form, LA Confidential Reference Information Regarding Applicant Application, and Employment Verification Form?

A. It is the responsibility of the applicant to send these forms to the appropriate individuals/agencies. The completed forms can be returned directly to the Board office by email, FAX, or U.S. Mail.

Q. I have a CLARB Council Record. Do I need to send out the forms?

A. The Board will accept the documentation on the CLARB Council Record. You will only need to provide two additional references that are not on your CLARB Council Record (the Board requires a total of five references, and we will accept the three on the CLARB Council Record).

Q. Can I apply for a Temporary Permit to practice landscape architecture in SC?

A. No, our Board does not offer Temporary Permits.

Q. What is an Emeritus Landscape Architect?

A. "Emeritus Landscape Architect” is a new designation for landscape architects that are completely retired from active practice, are 65 years of age or older, and have been licensed for 10 or more consecutive years. Individuals that meet this criteria and wish to apply for Emeritus status may do so by submitting the "Emeritus Application” located under "Applications and Forms.”

Continuing Education

Q. Is there a continuing education requirement for license renewals?

A. Licensees are required to report 20 hours of continuing education activities each biennial renewal period. Additional information on continuing education is available on the "Education” tab.

Q. How do I report my continuing education hours?

A.You will certify on the license renewal form that you have met the continuing education requirement for the biennial period. Do not send documentation to the Board unless you are selected for an audit. A form for personal use in tracking hours is available on the Board website at

Q. When are continuing education audits?

A. Continuing education audits are conducted after the biennial license renewal period ends in April of odd numbered years. You will be contacted by U.S. Mail if you are selected for an audit.

Q. Can you tell me if the course I plan to take will be approved for continuing education?

A. The Board does not pre-approve courses. It is the responsibility of the licensee to take courses that assist them in their practice, and to obtain documentation of the course that includes the course name, date, description, location, instructor name, and number of hours offered for the course.

Certificate of Authorization

Q. Who is required to have a Certificate of Authorization?

A. Businesses that are functioning as a sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability partnership, professional association, professional corporation, business corporation, limited liability company, joint venture, or any other legally constituted organization that practices or offers to practice landscape architecture must apply for a Certificate of Authorization if the business is advertising or offering landscape architectural services in the State of South Carolina. Individuals operating a sole proprietorship under their own name as licensed by the board are not required to apply for a Certificate of Authorization with our Board. For example, John Smith may operate in his name only, but firm licensure would be required for John Smith & Associates or John Smith, PA.

Q. What are the requirements for a Certificate of Authorization?

A. First, the firm must be registered with the SC Secretary of State prior to applying for a Certificate of Authorization with our board. Second, the responsible South Carolina Landscape Architect is no longer required to be a shareholder, partner, or officer with the firm. The firm will qualify as long as the responsible SC Landscape Architect is a full - time employee. All employees providing landscape architectural services in South Carolina must also have an individual license with our Board.

Q. If my firm offers Architectural or Engineering Services; do I have to apply for a separate Certificate of Authorization for each discipline?

A. Yes, each Board is independent, so you will need to apply for a separate Certificate of Authorization for each discipline.

Q. My firm has branch offices. Does each office need a Certificate of Authorization?

A. No, one Certificate of Authorization covers every office in your firm.

Q. Can I apply for reinstatement of my firm’s Certificate of Authorization?

A. No. If the firm’s Certificate of Authorization lapses, you must reapply for a new Certificate of Authorization.

License Renewals

Q. When are license renewals?

A. Licenses are renewed biennially, on January 31 of odd years. It is the responsibility of the individual to ensure their individual license and/or Certificate of Authorization is renewed by the January 31st deadline. Renewals received February 1 – March 31 of odd years are subject to a $40.00 late penalty fee. If a license is not renewed by March 31 of odd years, it will lapse.  

Q. Are notifications sent to licensees and firms for renewals?

A. Renewal notices with your Username and Password to access the Online Renewal System will be mailed to active licensees in early November of even years.

Q. How can I renew my license?

A. Licenses can be renewed online by clicking "Renew Your License,” or you can mail in a check with a paper renewal form.

Q. What is the renewal fee?

A. The fee is $200 for individual licenses and $400 for Certificates of Authorization.

Q. What happens if I fail to renew?

A.The license lapses and you can no longer practice landscape architecture or offer landscape architectural services in the State of South Carolina. Individual licenses can be reinstated for a period of two years after the license lapses. After that, you must reapply for licensure. Certificates of Authorization cannot be reinstated, so you must reapply if it lapses.

General Questions

Q. How do I change my contact information with the Board?

A. Information changes can be made through online services by clicking “Change Your Address.” You can also send a change to the Board by email at

Q. How do I change my name with the Board?

A. Email a copy of the appropriate documentation (marriage license, divorce decree, etc.) to the Board at

Q. Can I get a list of landscape architects licensed in the State?

A. There is a $10 charge for licensee lists. You can obtain a list by submitting a check or money order made payable to LLR – Landscape Architect Board and the "Licensee List Request Form” (located under "Applications and Forms”) to the Board office.

Q. How do I file a complaint with the Board?

A. Complaints can be filed online by clicking "File a Complaint.”

Q. I run a landscaping, lawn care, or tree service. Do I need a license through the Board?

A. No. These services are exempt from licensure under the SC Code of Laws, Section 40-28-210(8). You need to contact the county where you do business for information on local business permits.

Q. How can I contact the Board?

A. You can contact the Board office at (803) 896-4580 or at

Synergy Business Park; Kingstree Building
110 Centerview Dr.
Columbia, S.C. 29210
(803) 896-4300 | Office Hours: 8:30 a.m.- 5:00 p.m.
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