Payday loans offer borrowers a quick and convenient solution to their urgent financial needs. But the exorbitant interest rates attached to them easily spiraled out of control, plunging many borrowers into a debt trap that is difficult to break free from.
Payday loans have earned a notorious reputation over the years as a result. Several states have imposed strict regulations on lending companies to safeguard borrowers from falling prey to the predatory practices of payday lenders.
Texas is one such state that has taken measures to regulate payday lending companies. Though many residents in Texans still find themselves falling victim to payday loan scams. The most common problem borrowers encounter is relentless harassment by lenders who make constant demands for repayment. The following blog post explores effective strategies that borrowers in Texas must employ to put an end to the persistent calls from payday loan companies.
- Payday loans are convenient but have interest rates that lead borrowers into a debt trap.
- Texas has implemented laws to protect borrowers from predatory lending practices, but certain borrowers still fall victim to payday loan scams.
- Texas has usury laws, the Texas Finance Code, the Texas Credit Services Organization Act, and Texas Debt Collection Laws to regulate lending companies and protect consumers.
- The Texas Consumer Credit Commissioner provides resources and education to consumers on their rights and protections under Texas lending laws.
- The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) prohibits debt collectors from using abusive or threatening language, calling at unreasonable times, or misrepresenting the amount of debt owed.
- Borrowers are free to send a “cease and desist” letter to stop harassment from lenders and block phone numbers associated with payday loan companies or debt collectors.
Understanding Your Rights As A Borrower In Texas
Loan sharks and predatory lending practices are concerning issues in the lending industry. Texas has implemented usury laws to limit the interest rates charged on loans to address the problems regarding them. But the laws do not apply to payday lenders who operate under separate regulations.
Texas has enacted laws such as the Texas Finance Code and the Texas Credit Services Organization Act to further protect consumers. The former sets limits on fees and interest rates that lenders charge, while the latter regulates credit services organizations that provide payday loans. The Texas Consumer Credit Commissioner has developed a website to educate consumers on state laws and regulations related to payday loans.
Texas Lending Laws
Several states have enacted laws and regulations to address predatory lending practices, particularly in the payday loan industry. These laws aim to protect consumers from exorbitant interest rates and fees that lead to cycles of debt. Texas is one of the states that has implemented laws to protect borrowers from predatory lending practices. Listed below are the laws and regulations to protect consumers from unfair and predatory lending practices.
- Usury Laws – Texas has usury laws limiting the amount of interest lenders charge on loans. The laws set a maximum interest rate that lenders charge on various types of loans.
- Texas Finance Code – The Texas Finance Code regulates lenders and sets guidelines on loan terms, fees, and interest rates. It applies to various types of loans, including payday loans, personal loans, and auto loans.
- Texas Credit Services Organization Act – The act regulates credit services organizations that provide payday loans in Texas. The law requires credit service organizations to register with the Texas Secretary of State and comply with certain regulations.
- Texas Debt Collection Laws – Texas has laws that govern the collection of debt, including restrictions on collection practices and protections for consumers from harassment and abusive collection tactics.
- Consumer Credit Commissioner – The Texas Consumer Credit Commissioner is responsible for enforcing lending laws and regulations in the state. The commissioner provides resources and education to consumers on their rights and protections under Texas lending laws.
Regulations To Protect Consumers From Harassment
Many borrowers who fall behind on their payday loan payments or are unable to pay their debt are subject to harassment by lenders or debt collectors. It includes threatening phone calls, emails, or letters, which is very distressing for the borrower and add to their financial and emotional stress.
Phone calls are one of the most common forms of harassment experienced by borrowers, with debt collectors calling multiple times a day or at inconvenient times, such as early in the morning or late at night. Certain debt collectors use abusive or threatening language, making borrowers feel intimidated or scared.
It’s best to note that there are laws and regulations in place to protect borrowers from harassment and abusive collection tactics. For example, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is a federal law that prohibits debt collectors from using abusive or threatening language, calling at unreasonable times, or misrepresenting the amount of debt owed. Borrowers who are still experiencing harassment through phone calls have several options, such as cease and desist orders and blocking the lending company phone number.
Cease And Desist Letters To Stop Payday Loan Calls
Borrowers who are constantly bombarded with phone calls, emails, or letters from debt collectors or payday lenders find relief in sending a “cease and desist” letter. It is a written communication that explicitly demands that the recipient cease all harassing behavior, including contacting the borrower regarding the payday loan debt.
The cease and desist letter are more effective if borrowers provide specific information, such as their name and contact information, the name of the collection agency or creditor, and the details of the debt, including the original creditor and the amount owed. The letter must clearly state the borrower’s demand that the creditor or collection agency stop contacting them about the debt and that any failure to comply with the demand results in legal action.
It’s advisable to send the letter via certified mail with a return receipt requested to guarantee that the creditor or collection agency receives the letter. It provides the borrower with proof that the letter was delivered. The creditor or collection agency is legally required to stop all contact with the borrower regarding the debt, except for certain limited reasons, such as informing the borrower of any legal action being taken against them.
Blocking Payday Loan Company Phone Numbers
Borrowers who are fed up with constant harassment from payday loan companies or debt collectors must think about blocking their phone numbers as a viable solution. There are several methods to block phone numbers, depending on the borrower’s phone carrier and device.
One option is to use the built-in call-blocking feature on the borrower’s smartphone. Many modern smartphones have such capability, allowing users to block calls from specific numbers or unknown callers. The feature is usually accessed through the phone settings under “Call Blocking” or “Block List.”
Another option is to contact the borrower’s phone carrier and request that they block the phone numbers associated with payday loan companies or debt collectors. Most phone carriers provide call-blocking services and are able to help the borrower block specific numbers or even entire area codes.
Seeking Legal Assistance For Payday Loan Debt
Borrowers who are struggling with payday loan debt and facing legal issues related to the debt need to seek assistance from a consumer protection attorney. Such an attorney provides legal advice and representation for debt collection lawsuits, creditor harassment, and predatory lending practices. Consumer protection attorneys know state and federal payday loan laws and help borrowers understand their rights.
They are able to negotiate with creditors on behalf of the borrower to develop repayment plans and work to stop harassment from debt collectors. It’s best for borrowers to select a reputable consumer protection attorney specializing in payday loan debt issues. Listed below are the steps on how to find reputable lenders.
- Research. Begin by researching attorneys in the borrower’s local area with experience handling payday loan debt cases. Online search engines and referrals from friends and family members who have used legal services in the past are helpful in identifying potential attorneys.
- Check Credentials. Borrowers must verify if the attorney is licensed to practice law in the borrower’s state and have experience handling payday loan debt cases.
- Read Reviews. Check online reviews from past clients on the attorney’s website, social media pages, and other review sites to gauge their reputation.
- Schedule a Consultation. Schedule a consultation with the attorney to discuss the borrower’s case, the attorney’s experience, fees, and approach to resolving payday loan debt issues. The meeting is an opportunity to assess if the borrower feels comfortable working with the attorney and trusts their advice.
- Check Cost. Assess the cost of hiring the attorney, and ask about fees upfront so that the borrower understands the costs involved in seeking legal assistance. Certain consumer protection attorneys offer free consultations, while others work on a contingency fee basis, meaning they only get paid if they win the case.
Always Repay Payday Loans On Time
Borrowers must know that payday loans carry high-interest rates and fees. Failing to repay the loan on time increases costs over time, making it even more expensive. Making timely payments is necessary to avoid extra fees and interest charges. Payday lenders usually charge interest of $15-$30 for every $100 borrowed, which results in interest rates from 390 to 780% APR for two-week loans, according to Payday Loan Information for Consumers.
|Total Interest Paid
|Total Repayment Amount
The table shows the total interest paid and the total repayment amount for payday loans of varying amounts, interest rates, and terms. The loan amounts range from $100 to $1000, and the interest rates range from 15% to 35%. The repayment term for all loans is two weeks, which is the standard term for payday loans. The interest charges are calculated based on the average rates charged by payday lenders, which range from $15 to $30 for every $100 borrowed. For example, a $100 loan with a 15% interest rate results in a $15 interest charge, making the total repayment amount $115. As the loan amount increases, the interest rate increases, resulting in higher interest charges and total repayment amounts.
Payday loans have been known to be a quick solution to urgent financial needs, but their exorbitant interest rates have plunged many borrowers into a debt trap. Texas has taken measures to regulate payday lending companies, but many residents still fall victim to payday loan scams.
Understanding your rights as a borrower in Texas is necessary to protect yourself from unfair and predatory lending practices. Several laws and regulations have been put in place to safeguard consumers, including the Texas Finance Code, the Texas Credit Services Organization Act, and the Texas Debt Collection Laws.
Borrowers who experience harassment from lenders or debt collectors have several options, such as sending cease and desist letters or blocking the payday loan company phone numbers. Seeking legal assistance is a viable option for borrowers who feel their rights have been violated. It’s best for borrowers to know their rights and take proactive steps to avoid falling prey to payday loan scams.