Protecting the Rights of Consumers
For Over 25 Years
Edelman Combs Latturner & Goodwin LLC
We represent borrowers in a number of lawsuits concerning “tribal lending.”
Lenders, often not Native Americans or associated with tribes, make loans to poor and necessitous borrowers at triple-digit interest rates, generally greatly in excess of the rates permitted by the states in which the borrowers live, claiming to be associated with Native American tribes.
The “tribal” loans are often made at 200%-800% interest. This greatly exceeds the rates permitted in the states where the borrowers reside. For example, Illinois and Indiana generally cap rates at 36%. This reflects a policy determination by the legislature that if a loan cannot be made at 36% or less, it should not be made at all.
Borrowers who are victims of these high-interest loans have filed suit. So have the Attorneys General and regulatory officials in a number of states.
Courts have, with increasing frequency, held that “tribal” lenders are subject to the interest rates of the states where their borrowers reside and that a Native American tribe does not have the authority to make loans in excess of those rates. Consequently, the “tribal” loans are illegal.
Our clients filed lawsuits to enforce their rights under the laws applicable in their states of residence.