WASHINGTON -- The federal law that will prevent members of the military from being charged more than 36% for most sorts of loans went into effect on Oct. 1 and has earned the praise of three long-term opponents of payday lending.
The Center for Responsible Lending, an affiliate of the $290 million Self-Help Credit Union, headquartered in Durham, North Carolina, the Consumer Federation of America and the National Consumer Law Center have released a joint statement praising the law as a first step in the battle against what they characterized as predatory lending.
"The 36% cap will slow the predatory lenders down," said Jean Ann Fox, director of consumer protection for the Consumer Federation of America (CFA). "And the law says they can't hold onto the service member's personal check or have electronic access to their bank account as collateral for this type of loan. The threat of the lender depositing the borrower's check, which would often not clear the bank, has been a key way to trap borrowers in loans that they end up paying back many times over in interest."