Lansing, MI – Today, Michigan for Fair Lending launched a ballot measure campaign aimed at capping interest rates on payday loans. Current law allows predatory payday lenders to charge more than 370% APR for small loans targeted at customers who are often in dire straits, taking advantage of Michigan communities and trapping working families in a cycle of debt. This initiative will cap interest rates on payday loans and end the outrageous interest charged to borrowers who can least afford it.
Predatory lenders take millions per year from financially-strapped Michiganders. This is a massive drain on Michigan’s economy, sending millions of dollars to out-of-state corporations that otherwise would be spent in the local economy.
Fairness Project instrumentally supported two other successful ballot measures to stop predatory lending in recent years. In 2020, Fairness Project and local partners soundly won a ballot measure in Nebraska to curb predatory payday lending, cap interest rates and stop the debt trap for seniors, veterans, communities of color, low-income residents and others targeted by the abusive practice. It was approved by voters by a margin of 83% to 17%. In 2018, Fairness Project worked with Coloradans to Stop Predatory Payday Loans to pass a ballot measure that capped interest rates and other fees associated with payday and other short-term loans. It was approved by voters by a margin of 77% to 23%.
Statement from Kelly Hall, Executive Director of Fairness Project:
“Payday loans are predatory and trap people in a vicious cycle of debt. Their entire business model is based on exploiting people facing financial hardship by advertising these loans as quick help for an unexpected emergency. Fairness Project is proud to have supported two successful ballot measures to stop predatory lending and protect borrowers over the past four years, and we have every reason to believe that Michigan will be next on that list of victories.”