May 27, 2014
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Louisiana House to Hear Legislation to Legitimize the Lawsuit Lending Industry
The Louisiana House is scheduled to hear S.B. 299 (Dan W. Morrish) on Thursday, May 29, 2014. This legislation would allow lawsuit lenders to get around the Louisiana Consumer Credit and dodge regulation by the Office of Financial Institutions. ATRA strongly encourages members with an interest in Louisiana to engage their local lobbyist, association and/or counsel and have them urge members of the House to oppose this legislation. Attached is a handout that can be used in lobbying efforts with legislators regarding S.B. 299. For additional information, please contact Jim Harris of the Coalition for Common Sense at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Consumer lawsuit lending needs to be regulated and S.B. 299 fails to achieve that goal. The bill allows the lawsuit lending industry to “self-regulate” by providing a litany of toothless consumer protections to disguise the bill’s real intent: exempting the lawsuit lending industry from the Louisiana laws. Consumer lawsuit lending prioritizes financial gain above securing justice.
This is an important issue to the business community.
- · S.B. 299 creates the appearance of regulation, but really allows out-of-state lawsuit lenders to skirt Louisiana law.
- · Lawsuit lending takes advantage of vulnerable consumers and leverages the taxpayer-funded court system for private gain.
- · Out-of-state lawsuit lenders should have to operate under the same laws and regulations as those with locations in Louisiana.
- · Lawsuit lending prolongs litigation and prevents reasonable settlements.
- · The consumer lawsuit lending industry has introduced state legislation to legitimize its questionable practices. Similar bills have been blocked or defeated in fifteen states (Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, New York, Tennessee, Texas, and Vermont).
In Louisiana today, consumer lawsuit lending:
- · lacks regulation and transparency,
- · harms consumers by hiding excessive fees and interest rates,
- · leverages the taxpayer-funded judicial system for financial gain, and
- · prolongs litigation.