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Payday Loans News : Payday Personal Loans

Lawmakers’ Involvement Leads to Suit Brouhaha

Frustrated consumers in South Carolina have filed suit against cash advance lenders who allegedly extend unconscionable personal loan products to vulnerable borrowers. They may feel that legal action is their only option, given the fact that the state Legislature failed completely in efforts to regulate or restrict the payday loans this year. Now, news that some state lawmakers have signed on to represent these consumers has sent shockwaves through the fast cash loan industry and its lenders. Because these are the same legislators that will reconsider prohibiting these personal loans when the General Assembly reconvenes in January, some have accused the thirteen lawmakers of a conflict of interest.

Lisa Johnson of Andrews and Gilbert Herbert of Clinton have filed suit against Advance America Cash Advance, the nation’s largest payday loan provider, which is based in Spartanburg, seeking “unspecified financial damages.” The Andrews/Herbert suit joins a handful of existing cases open against fast cash loan dealers in South Carolina. There has been an ongoing effort to consolidate some of these cases into one or more class action suits. The two plaintiffs are represented by Former U.S. Attorney Pete Strom, who announced that he planned to file at least three more suits in coming weeks. Strom denies that his involvement in the suit constitutes a conflict of interest, because “democracy is a slow process,” and wronged borrowers need justice in a timely manner.

Advance America spokesman Jaimie Fulmer insisted that the company runs “a legal and regulated business in South Carolina.” Fulmer questioned whether Strom’s involvement with the payday loan suit was in any way appropriate, given his legislative connections.

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