Most of the payday lenders in Las Vegas use the same attorney to sue. He is a very good collector and I thank him every day because he is a big reason people see me about filing bankruptcy.
Since these debts are at a very high rate of interest, unless you qualify to file a bankruptcy, pay them off as quickly as you can. Or pay my referral source big legal fees on top of the money you already owe. Hope this perspective helps!
Please note, I am licensed only in Pennsylvania (other firm attorneys are licensed in New Jersey & Delaware). The following is not legal advice but rather my personal and practical thoughts on how to battle payday loan companies. Payday loan companies are notorious for not following the proper collection procedures. Although they may have standing to file a lawsuit, for the mopst part they do not file suit. Instead they rely upon threats of arbitration, predatory lending practices, high interest rates, and harassing collection tactics. For example, they often threaten criminal action contrary to state and Federal collection practice laws. Note, there are no debtor prisons in the United States; you cannot be imprisoned for not paying a debt.
You should begin the process of protecting yourself by sending a certified mailing to the payday loan company asking for validation of that debt which includes a request for a copy of any contract. The letter should also ask for an accounting of all charges and payments to date on the account. Demand that they cease and desist from any collection communications. Finally, if you dispute any portion of their debt (or their interest rates), inform them that you also dispute that debt. You can find sample debt validation/dispute letters on the internet. Keep a journal and record any and all communications efforts that come after receipt of that letter as they might be in violation of the law; which could be used to argue that they have waived their right to collect the debt. This includes phone calls, emails, missed calls, letters, etc.
A word of caution, these efforts won’t eliminate any debt obligation (it might even incur further penalties and interest) but, in theory, it should stop the debt collector from harassing you and will serve as a basis of possibly identifying future violations in collection practice laws. Note, however, payday loan companies rely upon a belief that they have immunity from collection laws due to their status as sovereign tribal Indian nations. It is this belief that empowers them to violate these collection laws. In order to take any action against you, they would essentially need to step off the reservation or hire a locally licensed collection company or law firm to go to Court. It is those persons (i.e. the local debt collectors) who might become liable for the unfair collection practice violations.
You can also try the state attorney general’s office for guidance as well as the Federal Trade Commission. If you sue for harassment and succeed, I would suggest that you have your attorney attempt to execute on their intangible personal property (i.e. their website domain name). This should be subject to execution in most states and the loss of the website could be devastati0ong to their business operations.
Stew Crawford, Jr., Esq.
Crawford Law Firm
A Full Service Law Firm Serving Pennsylvania and New Jersey
223 North Monroe Street
Media, Pennsylvania 19063 (Philadelphia Area)
All information provided in this comment is intended for informational purposes only and does not, by itself, create an attorney client relationship. If you wish to consult with an attorney, or have any questions concerning this comment, please feel free to contact our offices through any of the above contact sources.