Culik Law Sues Payday Lender in Federal Court in Massachusetts, Charged Over 800% Interest on $200 Loan
Culik Law filed suit in federal court against four companies, six individual defendants, and a Chicago law firm based on numerous violations of the Massachusetts Small Loan Laws, the Massachusetts Debt Collection Practices Act, the Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, and the Massachusetts Consumer Protection Act (Chapter 93A).
The suit alleges that the defendants were engaged in illegal, unfair, and deceptive acts in connection with a payday lending scheme. The payday loan at issue included fees, penalties, and interest that totaled more than 800%, on a loan of only $200. Massachusetts law prohibits lenders from offering small loans (under $6,000) that charge total interest and fees which that exceed 12%, in most cases.
The lawsuit includes claims that the defendants unlawfully drafted the consumer’s account for nearly $1,000 over a 10-week period, then sent her a statement showing her new balance was $1,042 – all for a loan of only $200. The suit further alleges that the contract terms were designed to ensure that the debt would never be repaid, and that the defendants violated both Massachusetts and Federal debt collection laws by, among other things, threatening to garnish the consumer’s wages and telling her they had the right to do so without a court order, and even threatening to have her arrested.
Defendants in this suit operated numerous websites targeting Massachusetts consumers, including, but not necessarily limited to: www.guaranteedcashnow.net, www.quickintocash.com, www.ezcreditline.net, www.moneycreditline.com, and www.lineofcreditnow.com.
Massachusetts has a strong public policy against usurious payday loans, and has enacted laws designed to protect consumers from predatory lending practices. Massachusetts’ senior U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren has explained that “Predatory lending practices like payday lending target those who already live on the margins of our financial system and strip wealth from middle class families, especially from communities of color. This isn’t a business model – it’s a trap designed to ensnare families that can’t build enough of a financial cushion to weather ups and downs. And it’s a trap that makes sure they never will build that cushion.”
Predatory payday loans are illegal in Massachusetts. If you are having debt collection issues or are being harassed by a payday lender, give us a call. Culik Law is a consumer protection law firm representing clients in Massachusetts, and our attorneys routinely handle cases involving debt collection violations.