Untangling Virginia’s Unemployment Insurance Overpayments 

VIDEO!  Attorney Flannery O’Rourke explains the problems…and the solutions. Note: see General Assembly legislative updates on the issue below this post by Flannery O’Rourke, Esq. Unemployment insurance can sometimes feel more like a tangled web than a safety net. Some claimants even remain entangled in Virginia’s unemployment insurance system long after their claim ends. Retroactive […]

People are struggling but workplace payday loans are not the answer.

People are struggling to pay their rent, utilities, and buy food.  We see it everywhere.  Lack of affordable housing, lack of access to medical care, utility shutoffs.  The Commonwealth of Virginia is not doing enough to help people.  Into that gap come those that will exploit desperation– payday lenders, get rich quick con men and […]

Why is Congress trying to gut laws passed to deal with Wall Street abuses?

The U.S. House of Representatives is set to vote on the so-called CHOICE Act, which would essentially undo all the protections put in place after the last Great Recession and bank bailout.   Here are a few questions we all must consider and ask of our Congressional representatives as they prepare to take America’s financial marketplace […]

Welcome to Shark Week 2015

 Loansharks inflict economic violence on borrowers.   “We may think of violence as physical harm. But violence is defined as force applied to bring destruction or damage. A violent wind or a violent act. However, the situations I observe with regularity are nothing less than economic violence. The violence to a family’s finances and stability […]

Auto Title Loans Riskier Than Payday Loans, New Report Says

By Herb Weisbaum, NBC News Digital When you’re desperate for cash and have run out of options, you might be willing to risk your car to buy yourself some time. That’s what happens with an auto title loan. You keep your car, but sign over the title to the lender who uses the vehicle as […]

Virginia Panel Quickly Kills Proposal to Limit High-Rate Loans

By Dave Ress, Daily Press It took less than five minutes for a House of Delegates committee to kill a bill to shut down a kind of high interest rate loan that keeps piling on debt even when borrowers make their basic monthly payments. The sponsor, Del. David Yancey, R-Newport News, figured that was progress. “The […]

New Lending Rules Will Protect Troops from Predatory Lending

The following is blog post from VPLC’s Director of Outreach and Financial Advocacy, Dana Wiggins: Today the Obama Administration and Department of Defense came out with proposed changes to the Military Lending Act that would plug loopholes being used by lenders that exploit members of the military. We doubt that anyone can seriously argue that […]

What Could Go Wrong if You Dip into Shark Infested Lending Waters

Continuing with our Shark Week theme, we wanted to dive a little deeper into what could actually go wrong if you get a car title or payday loan. VPLC operates a hotline for Virginians in trouble with or with questions about payday and car title loans.  We give advice and assistance to anyone that calls 866-830-4501. Here […]

Beware of Virginia’s “Shark” Infested Lending Waters

In honor of Shark Week, we want to ask:  Is it now safe to go in the lending waters in Virginia? Over the last several years, the Virginia General Assembly has passed legislation to regulate high-cost payday and car title lenders.  Is it now safe to borrow from these lenders?  The answer to that would […]

All Bad Loans Have One Thing in Common: The Cycle of Debt

Payday loans, car title loans, line of credit loans and Internet loans:  What do they have in common? The cycle of debt. What is the cycle of debt?  Well, here is a picture of it from the training manual at Ace Cash Express, a large national payday, internet and car title lender: This picture comes from […]

12 On Your Side: Man Loses Money in Online Loan Scam

By Diane Walker, NBC 12 Scammers have put together a sophisticated scheme to steal from people applying for emergency cash through a company offering services for a payday loan. If you have to send money to borrow money, it’s a bad move. Jacob Coker saw numerous red flags, he says, after he was taken for $420, […]

Chesterfield Board Sets Policy for Alternative Lenders

By Jeremy Slayton, Richmond Times-Dispatch Chesterfield County leaders this week signed off on a strict policy that limits where financial lenders offering high-cost instant loans can operate. According to the policy, alternative lenders must maintain a minimum separation of 1 mile between closest property lines, and they are banned from locating next to residential property […]

Loans Thrive in Loopholes

Virginian-Pilot Editorial Certain products – cigarettes, medicines, booze, mortgages – are so prone to abuse that society has a clear obligation to regulate them. Government and industry rules govern their sale and purchase, their advertisement, even their use. Since long before cigarettes were restricted to buyers 18 or older, the basic regulation of such products […]

Could Big Banks Help Rein in Payday Lenders?

By Mitchell Hartman, Marketplace/American Public Media JPMorgan Chase has announced new policies to limit the ability of online payday lenders to access bank customers’ accounts in order to withdraw improper or unwanted automatic payments. The bank — the largest by assets in the U.S. — says that by late spring, it will stop charging customers repeated overdraft fees […]

Laws Protect Against Predatory Lenders

By Craig Carper, WCVE News A coalition of consumer protection advocates says laws regulating the payday lending industry are working to shield customers from excessive interest rates. Listen to the full story Aired: February 15, 2013 More articles on payday lending: Group Thanks Lawmakers for Curbing Payday Lending By Kathy Adams, The Virginian-Pilot Published: February […]

VPLC Supports the 2013 SAFE Lending Act

Many online lenders think they are immune to state laws  – The Stopping Abuse and Fraud in Electronic Lending Act of 2013 (SAFE Lending Act) aims to change that.  The Virginia Poverty Law Center supports the legislation to combat internet payday lenders from skirting Virginia law.  Read VPLC’s press release on this issue. The SAFE Lending […]

The New Loan Sharks

By John Sandman, AARP Magazine Mary Love wants you to know: You don’t have to be poor to be a victim of payday loans. Love, 67, is a divorced LaGrange, Kentucky, resident and a minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA). When she got her first payday loan, in 2003, she wasn’t destitute; she was working […]

Need Quick Cash? Avoid These 6 Traps

By Barbara Diggs, Fox Business Don’t Risk Your Car With Title Loans Like payday loans, car title loans are small, short-term loans that come with a triple-digit annual interest rate. But while payday loans are secured with a postdated check, title lenders hold the title of the borrower’s vehicle — and a copy of the keys — […]

CashPoint Distributes Settlement Checks after AG Investigation

By Gray Hall, WWBT NBC12 A settlement check may be coming your way. CashPoint, a car title lender, will refund nearly $600,000 to more than 800 Virginia customers. Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli alleges the company operated without a license for two months in 2010. In a letter sent to hundreds of Virginia’s CashPoint admits it made […]

Several Measures Aim to Help Struggling Virginians

By Kathy Adams, The Virginian-Pilot From outlawing fraudulent home foreclosures to protecting college students’ credit ratings, a handful of bills before the General Assembly look to ease the burden on Virginians who are struggling financially and to protect them from being cheated. Although only a few consumer protection bills have progressed this session – during […]

Read more