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Read the Story of a Payday Loan Customer

Adam Rust's picture

Posted March 21, 2011

The following account consists of the real words offered by a woman who fell into the payday lending trap. She took out a loan to pay for some medication. She could not scrape together the amount of her debt before her next pay check. She was left with no choice but to renew her

loan.  With each passing two week period, she owed more money.

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Can you imagine what it is like not knowing if you will be able to show your face to your friends and family because they now know you were "stupid enough to get involved with payday lenders"?  I do.  In fact for the second time in my life I felt ending my life would be far better than what I was living.  Payday lending is an addiction.  As an alcoholic or a drug addict does not know where the money will come from for their next fix, an addict of payday borrowing wonders where the next "lender" is that you can borrow from in order to pay the other one who you used that money to pay yet another.

People ask how does it start? Why can you not stop?  Well, in my case I did not have medical insurance and being diabetic, clinically depressed, and suffering anxiety/panic disorder I could not work with out my medications which ran about $400.00 a month.  Guess what, when you do not have your medication you can not really function at work very well and miss time.  So, in order not to miss work you borrow to pay for the medications.  You think, okay, get back on them and you can work a full schedule again.  You do not think ahead, you just do it.  Next week I will pay the loan back.  Then, oh no, my check is short, so you pay only what you can to extend, and you do this for a month and still owe the full amount when it is time to pay for more medications.  Then your car breaks down and okay, you discover you can take one check to two or three places and get three loans, thinking well we can do a round robin for awhile to get out from under.  Now you get laid off.  Seven loans on one check gets a little hairy and weeks later scary.

Now, they are physically taking the checks to the bank to present for payment.  No funds so they walk away with the check and the bank charges me with insufficient funds fees.  In a few days the checks are again presented to the bank and the same thing happens (the back does not stamp the check INF) so the lender walks away with a clean check again and another round of INF fees are charged to the bank account.  (Linda Hilton has these documents by the way)  Your checking account gets closed by the bank and the next thing you know you are being threatened with passing a bad check.  Death does sound lovely does it not?

One company loved to call and at the same time that they had another person at the door.  Well, when you live with a family member word gets out real quick.  One company called my son in laws parents house.  What do they have to do with my loans?  They called work - naturally I was no longer there.

I need to back up a little because at one time while I was working I had my check garnished without any notice at all.  Which just added to the inability to have sufficient funds to pay others and to live on.  This one was an online loan.
It has been since 2001 that I have been involved.  I was able to dispense with most of them through bankruptcy in 2002 with a Chapter 13 where I paid 150.00 a month for six years.
Unfortunately in 2005 I lapsed and took out three more loans.  I am glad to say that only one is plaguing me to this day.  They keep selling it to different collection agencies.  When I send them letters that I am unemployed and have tax issues that will come first, they sell it off to some one else and the harassment begins again until that company give up and sells it once more.  I ignore them now.  In fact on my cell phone I have NINE caller IDs labeled DoNotAns1, DoNotAns2 and so forth - it is all the same company using different extensions.  They have not called for about three weeks now.  It is time they sold me off to someone else and I will go through the same thing again.

I even have a letter from a lender that I never dealt with.  I was able to prove that one false and they backed off.  This was one of my more lucid times.  Another one I had taken out on line and within minutes cancelled per their cancellation rules (kept those documents too) but they sold it to a collection agency and I disproved that one too.  Some people just pay with out checking.

I am embarrassed to tell people my story (I am educated and have a very high IQ) and show everyone how I was so stupid in this.  However, if my embarrassment will help others learn NOT to use these sharks, if my story will help rein in these companies to decent business practices (I do not think the industry as a whole can be outlawed) and keep banks from taking advantage of this form of lending then I will shout it from the roof tops to the world.  For 10 years they have played a sad part of my life.  Time to take it back and educated others how not to get "hooked".  I am in a financial struggle now and have looked at the lenders on line but have been able to remember what I have gone through in the past.