Franchising in West Virginia: Franchise Laws & Registration Requirements | Internicola Law Firm

West Virginia Franchise Registration Laws

West Virginia Franchise Registration Status: Non-Registration State
State Registration Fee: $0.00

The state of West Virginia is considered a non-registration state. When it comes to franchising states are generally broken down into registration, non-registration and filing states. With West Virginia being a non-registration state it means that there are no special franchise requirements that must be completed prior to being able to offer or sell a franchise in the state of West Virginia. Sometimes when there aren’t franchise registration laws enacted in a state there may be business opportunity laws that the franchise business falls under. This is not the case with West Virginia. West Virginia does not have a business opportunity law in effect.

Federal Requirements When Franchising

Franchisors selling franchise locations in West Virginia, or any state, still must comply with the Federal Trade Commission laws for franchises. The federal franchise laws in place are created to protect the franchisor and the franchisee, especially during the transaction process. The FTC’s Franchise Rule requires that a franchisor disclose anyone interested in purchasing a franchise with an up to date copy of the franchise’s Franchise Disclosure Document, also known as an FDD. Once the buyer has received a copy of the Franchise Disclosure Document there must be a minimum of a 14 day wait prior to completing the sale of the franchise. It is important to continuously remain in compliance with the federal franchise laws regardless of what state you are franchising in.

The Importance of a Franchise Disclosure Document

The Franchise Disclosure Document is used as a means of disclosing prospects of various aspects of your franchise prior to purchasing. This document is a thick document that contains information on a wide array of topics about your franchise. Topics include disclosure about persons who own the business, financial information, a break down of franchise costs, territory information and much more. It is important that this document be accurate and that the information be kept current.

Helpful Resources

When franchising your business or expanding your franchise into a new state it is important to be in compliance with federal franchise laws and, if applicable, state franchise laws. Documents must be filed correctly and be updated to ensure the disclosure information reflect that of the franchise’s current state. To learn about our Franchise Counsel Program which offers a wide range of services to franchisors including Franchise Assessment and Planning, FDD Maintenance and Improvement, Franchise Compliance, Marketing and much more, visit our Franchise Counsel Program page or call us directly at 1-800-976-4904.

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