Billing Tree, Inc., an Arizona company that processes electronic payments, will pay $178,000 to settle claims that the company violated Vermont consumer protection laws.
Vermont Payday Loan Laws and Refunds
Here’s a link to the Vermont Payday Loan Settlement: Vermont
Verify Vermont payday loan lenders having a license here: Vermont Payday Loan Licensees
To file a Vermont payday loan complaint: Vermont PDL Complaint
The Attorney General for the State of Vermont successfully secured refunds for approximately 4000 Vermont bank account holders from billing Tree.
“Vermont continues its strong prosecution against those engaged in predatory lending activities,” said Attorney General William H. Sorrell. “This is the fourth and largest settlement against a payment processor of high-interest, unlicensed internet loans and a further warning to the illegal lending industry.”
From 2012-2014, Billing Tree processed debits from nearly 4000 consumer bank accounts in Vermont on behalf of at least 43 online payday loan lenders. The annual interest rates (APR) often exceeded 100-300%. Vermont law prohibits annual interest above 24%. None of the 43 lenders had a license to make loans in Vermont.
As of May 2014, Billing Tree ceased processing payments in Vermont involving any online consumer loans.
Under the terms of the settlement, Billing Tree will issue credits totaling $153,282 to the Vermont bank accounts, and will pay $25,000 in civil penalties and costs to the State. The credits represent partial compensation for payment of interest over Vermont’s legal limit.
Consumers who have borrowed from any lender not listed as licensed with the Vermont Department of Financial Regulation can file a complaint with the Attorney General’s Consumer Assistance Program, or mail a complaint to “Consumer Assistance Program,” 146 University Place, Burlington, VT 05405.