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Why are payday loans considered predatory?

On Behalf of | Jan 18, 2024 | Bankruptcy

Payday loans are a controversial form of borrowing that has garnered a predatory reputation. These loans have incredibly high interest rates and fees, which can be significantly higher than those of more conventional lending options.

The structure of payday loans often leads borrowers into a detrimental cycle of debt, where they are forced to take out additional loans to pay off the initial amount borrowed, perpetuating their financial difficulties.

Preying on vulnerable individuals

Payday loan lenders target vulnerable populations. Lenders frequently establish their businesses in low-income neighborhoods. They’re known for being misleading about the true costs and terms of the loans. This lack of transparency can result in borrowers accumulating substantial debt over relatively modest initial loan amounts. The complex or unclear nature of loan agreements further exacerbates this issue.

Bankruptcy as a solution for payday loan debt

When payday loan debts become overwhelming, filing for bankruptcy might offer a viable solution. The bankruptcy process begins with an automatic stay, which immediately halts most actions by creditors, including attempts to collect payday loan debts. This stay provides immediate relief for the debtor, stopping any ongoing legal proceedings or wage garnishment associated with the payday loans.

Payday loans are usually classified as non-priority unsecured debts. This means that in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, these debts are eligible for discharge. In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, payday loans are consolidated with other debts into a repayment plan and are discharged upon the completion of the plan.

Determining how to get out of debt can be challenging. Anyone who decides to file for bankruptcy should ensure they have someone on their side who can explain the process and provide guidance.