As the payday loans industry boomed in the US in the years after the millennium, many people found themselves knowing at least one person who had taken out one of the loans, and whilst a number of people swear by them, people’s experiences were largely negative. Although the market for these loans has been dwindling and downsizing in recent years, the lenders are still a fairly common sight.
It’s not hard to find a company that can provide you with a payday loan, as a range of operators from payday loan stores, pawn shops and check cashing stores to toll-free telephone numbers and even rent-to-buy stores all have the ability to lend the money out. Getting hold of a loan is quick and easy, too, as all you need is some form of identification, an open and working bank account and a regular income or cash flow to be granted the money, whereas banks will carry out a number of checks on credit score ratings and personal questions in order to determine whether the borrower can be trusted to pay the amount back by the time the loan term is up. This has resulted in a number of people falling foul of payday loan lenders, as they’ve been financially unstable and taken out a loan with high interest rates and charges which they were then later unable to pay back.
It’s because of the high risks to borrowers of payday loans, and the often underhand ways in which the lenders work, that many US states have banned the loans (only thirty-two actually allow them), and the ones who do permit payday loans to be borrowed have set strict limits and caps on the interest rates, charges and penalty fees that can be added on. It’s very important that all those who are considering taking out a payday loan know what their rights are, and what the lenders are and aren’t allowed to charge or loan out.
In the state of Montana, payday loans are currently legal. The laws do, however, set a maximum limit on the amount of loans of $300 and a maximum loan term of thirty-one days. The maximum interest rates that can be applied to payday loans in Montana is 36% APR (annual percentage rate), and the maximum charge for a $100 loan, taken out for fourteen days is $1.39. Failure to pay the loan back in full by the date agreed to in the contract will result in one non-sufficient funds charge of $30, and no more.
The regulatory body of small loans and payday loans in Montana is the Division of Banking and Financial Institutions and the regulatory contact is Chris Olson. To get in touch with Chris Olson, or a member of staff in the division, write to them at 301 South Park, Suite 316, Helena, MT 59601, or alternatively, give them a call on (406) 248-2742.