In West Virginia, it is unlawful for any person not licensed under the provisions of this article to practice massage therapy in this state, or to use the initials LMT, C.M.T., or the words “licensed massage therapist,” “masseur,” or “masseuse,” or any other words or titles which imply or represent that the person, corporation or association is engaging in the practice of massage therapy, or employ any person, not duly licensed, who is engaging in the practice of massage therapy or who is using such words or titles to imply or represent that he or she is engaging in the practice of massage therapy.
You can look on the Board of Massage Website to verify massage licenses to ensure you are seeing a properly trained and licensed massage therapist. Every licensed massage therapist must attend an approved massage school and pass their curriculum and take a state licensing exam. They must also display their massage license on the office wall. 194-1-3; 3.11. Your licensed massage therapist (By Law) will provide adequate draping for privacy and also provide you with a notice of informed consent explaining your session.
Massage Therapy Defined
“Massage therapy” means a health care service which is a scientific and skillful manipulation of soft tissue for therapeutic or remedial purposes, specifically for improving muscle tone, circulation, promoting health and physical well-being. Massage therapy includes massage, myotherapy, massotherapy, bodywork, bodywork therapy, or therapeutic massage including hydrotherapy, superficial hot and cold applications, vibration and topical applications or other therapies which involve manipulation of the muscle and connective tissue of the body, for the purpose of enhancing health, reducing stress, improving circulation, aiding muscle relaxation, increasing range of motion, or relieving neuro-muscular pain. Massage therapy does not include diagnosis or service which requires a license to practice medicine or surgery, osteopathic medicine, chiropractic, or podiatry, and does not include service performed by nurses, occupational therapists, or physical therapists who act under their own professional license,certificate or registration.
(d) “Massage establishment” means a place of business wherein massage therapy is practiced.
Unlicensed Practice Laws 30-37-10. Prohibitions and penalties. No person is allowed to engage in the practice of massage or use the intitials LMT, CMT or licensed massage therapists, masseur or masseuse or any other words that imply they are practicing massage therapy. It is a misdemeanor if they are found to be doing this with a penalty of $500-$1000 and a year of jail time according to the law.
West Virginia Massage Therapy Licensure Board
179 Summers Street
Charleston, WV 25301
Toll Free in WV: 800-871-7265