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WV Co-Op Collaborative Toolkit



Working with partners at Mountain State Justice,  The West Virginia College of Law and the Ohio Cooperative Development Center, we are developing a toolkit that will be designed for people who are exploring the co-op model, empowering them with the knowledge they need to create a new cooperative venture successfully. The toolkit is being designed around this overview:

So What’s So Great About a Co-op?

  • Co-ops have unique philosophy

  • Co-ops have unique legal/tax status

  • Co-ops can be uniquely identified

There’s a New Law in Town

  • The new law allows many different types of businesses to incorporate as a co-op.

  • Multi-stakeholder cooperatives (MSCs) are now a reality in West Virginia. MSCs instill democratic ideals into the marketplace and recognize that there are multiple interests (that sometimes disagree) in a single business transaction.

What Incorporation and Co-op Model is Right for Me?

  • The differences between LLCs and cooperatives.

  • Distinguish between Producer, Consumer, Worker, and MSC co-ops.

What are the Most Important Decisions I Must Make Before I Incorporate as a Co-op?

  • Allocation of governance rights

  • Distribution of Patronage

Articles of Incorporation & Bylaws

  • Legal requirements under WV Code §§ 19-4-6 and 19-4-8.

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