Two weeks later, a tow truck hooked up his 2003 Dodge Ram SLT pickup in his school’s parking lot, and he watched as it was hauled away. Later, he saw the truck for sale online. While the Servicemember Civil Relief Act bars the repossession of an active-duty service member’s property without a court order, that doesn’t extend to veterans. White says the loan payments and loss of his truck drained his bank account and made it difficult to focus on schoolwork.
In Ohio, SCIL, Inc. dba Speedy Cash, is a registered Ohio Credit Services Organization (CS.900174.000) operating pursuant to the Ohio Credit Services Organization Act. The actual lender is an unaffiliated third party. The Ohio laws against discrimination require that all creditors make credit equally available to all credit worthy customers, and that credit reporting agencies maintain separate credit histories on each individual upon request. The Ohio civil rights commission administers compliance with this law.
White says his vehicle title loan quickly got out of hand. When the U.S. government shut down because of a budget impasse in October 2013, he didn’t get his Post-9/11 benefits or work-study pay for a Department of Veterans Affairs job for almost two months. He fell behind on bills. The title lender began calling him several times a day both at work and on his cellphone, asking for loan payments.
With a title loan, the amount you qualify for depends on an assessment of your car’s value. Loans range from a few hundred dollars to $10,000. A standard title loan is due in full after 30 days. This includes the finance charge, which can be as much as $125 for a $500 loan – that means you’ll pay $625 total when the loan is due. According to the Pew Charitable Trust, the average APR on title loans is around 300%.
Although some have noted that these loans appear to carry substantial risk to the lender, it has been shown that these loans carry no more long term risk for the lender than other forms of credit. These studies seem to be confirmed by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission filings of at least one lender, who notes a charge-off rate of 3.2%.
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