I am currently trying to help a friend of mine get his finances in order because neither his wife nor he are good with money (his words, not mine—but all evidence points toward it being accurate).
While assessing his general situation, we have come across two high-interest loans he is currently struggling to pay off. Both these loans seemed highly dubious to me, so I decided to do some digging online—which has led me to this community.
From what I have gathered here so far, the contracts for these loans are indeed not lawful and hence do not have to be adhered to; the consensus appears to be that merely paying back the principal is enough to fulfil one's obligations. I am, however, not firm on the legal intricacies involved, and since I do not want to give my friend incorrect advice, I thought I would start a new thread here and ask about his specific case, to be certain.
The situation is as follows: he lives in central Florida and took out two loans, online, around Christmas last year, so roughly twelve weeks ago. One of the loans is over 300 USD with Radiant Cash, the other over 450 USD with Lakeshore Loans.
Both of these companies are tribal lenders, as per the legal information on their websites. ("RadiantCash Loans are offered by Ishwaaswi, LLC dba RadiantCash. Ishwaaswi, LLC is a Native American owned business created by and for the Lac Du Flambeau Band of Chippewa Indians"; "Giizis LLC dba Lakeshore Loans is a Native American owned business operating within the interior boundaries of the Lac du Flambeau reservation".)
Within the above-mentioned twelve weeks, he has paid approximately 370 USD to Radiant Cash and 540 USD to Lakeshore Loans—so already considerably more than the principal, yet the payment plans are set to run their course for another four months, with further payments of approximately 700 and 1,000 USD respectively.
As I understand it, such exploitative interest rates as proposed by these tribal lenders are not legal in Florida, and the contracts therefore not binding. Before I advise my friend to follow the instructions found in this thread, however, I would appreciate some feedback by the fine folks of this community on this specific situation.
Also, my friend has voiced concerns that butting heads with these lenders might affect his credit score/rating. Is that something he needs to worry about?
Thank you in advance for any advice you can offer.
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