Attorney General announces order requiring regulation of lawsuit-advance loans

DENVER — Colorado Attorney General John Suthers announced today that a Denver District Court judge has determined that transactions a series of Northbrook, Ill.-based companies and a Brooklyn, N.Y.-based business engaged in are loans subject to Colorado’s consumer-protection laws.

According to the order, Oasis Legal Finance and its sibling companies and LawCash made loans when they advanced roughly 2,400 Coloradans sums of money typically ranging from $500 to $5,000 in anticipation of legal settlements or judgments from lawsuits. The state will continue its case to determine the companies’ possible liability under Colorado law.

Lawsuit-advance companies typically expect their customers to pay a multiple of the fronted funds depending on the length of time between the loan being made and the payment of settlement funds. In the case of Oasis Legal Finance, consumers paid APRs ranging from 60 percent to 125 percent; in the case of LawCash, the APRs ranged from 65 percent to 215 percent. Colorado law requires licensure when a business is making loans with an APR greater than 12 percent. Neither Oasis Legal Finance nor LawCash are licensed with the state as required by Colorado’s Uniform Consumer Credit Code.

To learn more about the Uniform Consumer Credit Code, a licensed lender in Colorado or to file a consumer complaint, visit www.coloradoattorneygeneral.gov/uccc.

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