The West Virginia Division of Financial Institutions was created by Legislative enactment in 1901 and continues to function today under the authority of the West Virginia Code Chapter 31A as amended. The Division of Financial Institutions is a state regulatory agency responsible for the oversight of our state's financial services industry in order to foster and promote a sound and dynamic climate for the citizens and businesses of West Virginia.
The Division existed as an independent agency until 1989, when, as a result of reorganization of state government, the agency was made a part of the Department of Commerce, Labor and Environmental Resources. During the 1994 session of the West Virginia Legislature, the agency was granted the authority to transfer to the Department of Tax and Revenue and remains a part of that Department today.
The Division of Financial Institutions is responsible for the supervision of financial institutions licensed and chartered by the State of West Virginia as well as other entities which engage in financial activity in the state. At the present time, the Division supervises state chartered banks, state chartered credit unions, regulated consumer lenders, mortgage lenders, brokers, and loan originators, companies engaged in currency exchange, transmission and transportation, and supervised financial institutions.
The Division of Financial Institutions continues to play a proactive role in the supervision of the financial services industry of West Virginia under the direction of Governor Earl Ray Tomblin, Department of Revenue Cabinet Secretary Charles O. Lorensen and Commissioner of Banking Sara M. Cline.
The Division of Financial Institutions is located at 900 Pennsylvania Avenue, Suite 306, Charleston, West Virginia. Offices are located in the West Virginia Lottery Building.
Additional information relating to the Division of Financial Institutions and its operation may be found in the following areas:
- The Commissioner of Banking serves as the chairperson for both the West Virginia Board of Banking and Financial Institutions and the West Virginia Lending and Credit Rate Board.
The West Virginia Board of Banking and Financial Institutions is comprised of seven members who oversee the operation of financial institutions operating in the State of West Virginia. The board is responsible for advising the Commissioner on matters within his or her jurisdiction, approving or disapproving applications put forth by financial institutions, exercising powers superior to that of the Commissioner and to provide a means of appeal for decisions made by the Commissioner of Banking.
The West Virginia Lending and Credit Rate Board is comprised of nine members whose purpose is to prescribe semiannually the maximum interest rates and finance charges on loans, credit sales or transactions, forbearance or similar transactions. The rates prescribed by the board are alternative rates and any creditor may utilize either the rate or rates set by the board or any other rate or rates which the creditor is permitted to charge under any other provision of the West Virginia Code. The most recent West Virginia Lending And Credit Rate Board Order will become effective on December 1, 1999. Following is that Order: Executive Order Oct 1999