No matter what industry you’re in, West Virginia is an intriguing place to start an enterprise, particularly a small business. There are over 113,000 small businesses in the Mountain State, which accounts for 98.9% of all companies within the state.

As a small business owner in West Virginia, there are certain bases you need to have covered before you can safely (or legally) operate. One of those bases is business insurance. In this guide, you’ll learn about the types of insurance you’re required to have, and some other coverage options to help you protect your business from potentially expensive claims.

What business insurance am I required to get in West Virginia?

West Virginia workers’ compensation insurance

All employers in West Virginia with three or more employees are legally required to have workers’ compensation insurance. Workers’ compensation insurance exists to safeguard employees from financial impact related to injuries or illnesses sustained on the job. As a business owner, it also protects you from liability related to employee injuries. Workers’ compensation covers expenses and lost wages caused by the following:

  • Work-related accidents and injuries, such as repetitive stress injury, and resulting disability
  • Illnesses caused by or related to employment

West Virginia auto liability insurance

If you drive a car, truck or van as part of your business operation, you’re required to have auto liability insurance or qualify as a self-insurer. Auto liability insurance can protect you and your business from the financial consequences of the following types of third-party claims resulting from auto accidents involving your vehicle:

Bodily injury – If you get into an accident and the driver or a passenger of the other vehicle is injured, your auto bodily injury liability insurance covers the costs arising out of bodily injury, including medical expenses and death benefits.

Property damage – In the above scenario, it’s extremely likely the other car sustained some damage as well. Your auto policy’s property damage liability coverage insures the cost to repair or replace the other party’s vehicle.

Also, depending on the use of your vehicle, the kind of vehicle or if your vehicle is registered or titled under your business name, you may need a commercial auto insurance policy to secure the appropriate coverage and vehicle registration, and avoid penalties.

What other types of business insurance are recommended for West Virginia?

West Virginia general liability insurance

General liability insurance (also known as CGL—for commercial general liability) is one of the most essential and effective ways to safeguard your business. It protects your business from the financial consequences resulting from liability related to third-party non-employee bodily injury or third party property damage that arises from your business operations. It also provides coverage for personal and advertising injury. Without general liability insurance coverage, you could be in financial trouble in the event of an unfortunate accident involving a customer or other third party.

West Virginia professional liability insurance

If you provide professional services and your advice is alleged to have led to one of your clients suffering a financial loss, professional liability insurance can help. When a former customer or client claims—rightly or wrongly—that a mistake in your work led them to suffer a financial loss, professional liability insurance provides you with investigation and defense of the claim as well as making payments of any settlements or judgments.

Inland marine insurance

Inland marine insurance is designed to protect that vital equipment you use to make your business run smoothly. It protects your business by covering costs associated with accidentally damaged, lost or stolen equipment that is on the go with you. Whether you have an expensive tool collection, pricey construction materials, or other equipment you transport to a job site, having inland marine insurance is a no-brainer. At Thimble, we offer inland marine insurance, or Business Equipment Protection as we call it, with coverage for up to $5,000 worth of business property and equipment.

Commercial property insurance

Commercial property insurance protects your company’s building and the contents inside it from all kinds of risks of physical loss or damage, including theft, vandalism, fires and natural disasters such as floods, storms or earthquakes. Commercial property insurance is often included as part of a Business Owners’ Insurance Policy, or BOP.

Professions covered in West Virginia

No matter what your business is, if you’re in West Virginia, you’ll benefit from being insured. If a non-employee slips and falls due to a workplace hazard or you accidentally damage a client’s property while working in their home, the last thing you need is to pay out-of-pocket for damages. In West Virginia, Thimble’s business insurance covers:

Cost of business insurance in West Virginia

At Thimble, the cost of your business insurance depends on a variety of factors. The amount of risk involved in your business, the industry you’re in, and the amount of business you do all play a part in determining your policy premium.

Another important factor is your location. More populated areas like Charleston or Wheeling might have higher premiums on average than less populated locations like Dunbar or Oak Hill.

Finally, Thimble will look at factors such as your crew size, coverage amount and the number of years you’ve been in business before determining how much your premium will be.

Median West Virginia insurance costs

Coverage Period

By the hour

By the day

By the Week

By the month

Median Cost

$9.21

$17.72

$59.89

$77.21

Top cities for businesses in West Virginia

  • Ashland
  • Beckley
  • Charleston
  • Huntington
  • Morgantown
  • Parkersburg
  • Weirton
  • Wheeling

Bottom line: West Virginia business insurance

Nestled in the heart of Appalachia, West Virginia is a haven for entrepreneurs, with small businesses making up over 98% of all companies in the state. From Charleston to Morgantown, Ashland to Wheeling, local businesses are helping to drive the Mountain State’s economy and contribute to a vibrant way of life for all West Virginians. One thing all businesses have in common, though, is their need for proper insurance coverage.

Even if you’re just starting up, you can find West Virginia business insurance coverage that’s right for you. Through Thimble, you can get a quote for your general liability insurance, professional liability insurance or Business Equipment Protection in less than a minute and if you decide to buy, you’ll be able to access your policy and Certificates of Insurance (COIs) in your inbox instantly.

Source:

  1. U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy – West Virginia Small Business Economic Profile

Our editorial content is intended for informational purposes only and is not written by a licensed insurance agent. Terms and conditions for rate and coverage may vary by class of business and state.