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Representative APR 391%. Average APR for this type of loans is 391%. Let's say you want to borrow $100 for two week. Lender can charge you $15 for borrowing $100 for two weeks. You will need to return $115 to the lender at the end of 2 weeks. The cost of the $100 loan is a $15 finance charge and an annual percentage rate of 391 percent. If you decide to roll over the loan for another two weeks, lender can charge you another $15. If you roll-over the loan three times, the finance charge would climb to $60 to borrow the $100.

Implications of Non-payment: Some lenders in our network may automatically roll over your existing loan for another two weeks if you don't pay back the loan on time. Fees for renewing the loan range from lender to lender. Most of the time these fees equal the fees you paid to get the initial payday loan. We ask lenders in our network to follow legal and ethical collection practices set by industry associations and government agencies. Non-payment of a payday loan might negatively effect your credit history.

Calculate APR Rules in Your State Alternatives to Payday Loan For Military Consumers

Rules in Your State

State Min/Max Term Min/Max Loan Fees and Finance Charges Status of Laws
Alabama 10-31days $500 17.5% of loan After the initial loan period and one rollover with the same customer, the full outstanding amount of the loan, is due and payable. If the borrower is unable to repay the outstanding balance in full, the payday lender may offer the customer an extended repayment option of four equal monthly installments of the remaining balance. If there are insufficient funds to pay a check on the date of presentment, the lender may charge an additional fee. (Alabama Deferred Presentment Services Act, Title 5, Chapter 18A)
Alaska 14 days min. $500 15% or the lesser of $15 per $100 loaned + $5 fee S.B. 272 Signed by governor 6/29/04, (Chapter 116) Gives the Department of Community and Economic Development additional licensing and regulatory authority over payday lenders; gives borrowers the right to rescind the advance without cost before the end of the following business day; prohibits onerous collection practices by both payday lenders and payday third-party collectors, including the threat of criminal charges; prohibits the acceptance of collateral other than a check or other instrument; and defines the additional disclosures that lenders are required to make to clearly describe the advances and their uses for the borrowers.
Arizona 5 days min. $50-$500 15% of amount loaned A borrower may have only one outstanding payday loan at one time and the face amount, exclusive of any fees, cannot be more than five hundred dollars with three rollovers. Several bills introduced in the 2005 Legislative Session amend requirements for payday lenders, and loans.
Arkansas 6-31 days $400 10% of amount loaned + $10 fee max. Senate Bill 948 amended existing law protecting the military, and some licensing requirements.
California 31 days $300 15% of amount loaned A.B. 207 introduced in 2005 prohibits the fee for some deferred deposit transactions from exceeding an effective annual rate greater than 10 percent; Requires a check from a customer for these deferred deposit transactions to be made payable to the actual name of the licensee; Prohibits a check that has been held by a licensee for more than 31 days from being presented to a bank for payment.
Colorado 40 days $500 20% first $300; 7.5% of amount loaned in excess of $300 Only one loan per borrower at a time.
Connecticut       The small loan laws of Connecticut permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay. Lenders must comply with other provisions of the state’s small loan act. This amounts to very large annual percentage rates.
Delaware 60 days $500 No limit The small loan laws of Delaware permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay. Lenders must comply with other provisions of the state’s small loan act. This amounts to very large annual percentage rates. H.B. 152: enacted 7/12/05 sets fees/damages for bad checks and provides that damages or fees may not be obtained for pay-day loans, made by a bank or licensed payday lenders.
District of Columbia 31 days $50 min; up to $1,000 per borrower $5 on amounts up to $250; $10 face amounts $250.01 to $500; $15 on face amounts $500.01 to $750; and $20 on face amounts of $750.01 to $1,000+ fees The District of Columbia passed statutes specifically authorizing payday lending. The interest rates and fees that lenders are permitted to charge amount to very large annual percentage rates. The APR for a 14-day $100 loan is 419%. Payday lenders are permitted to add additional fees for handling, processing and verification on a sliding scale based on the amount borrowed.
Florida 7-31 days $500 exclusive of fees 10% max + $5 fee Florida passed statutes specifically authorizing payday lending. The interest rates and fees that lenders are permitted to charge amount to very large annual percentage rates. The APR for a 14 day, $100 loan is 390%.
Georgia   $3,000 min   In general Georgia law prohibits the making of any loans of $3,000 or less if that loan violates Georgia's usury law. Payday lenders in Georgia are not permitted to loan borrowers less than $3,000 for more than 16% APR. A payday lender is permitted to charge 16% APR if it attempts to loan money directly to its customers and only then if the in-state lender holds more than a 50% interest in the revenues from the loan. However a state chartered bank operating under the laws of another state and insured by the FDIC, that is not operating in violation of the federal and state laws applicable to that state charter, is not limited by Georgia's 16% cap. (See Georgia Code Ann. §§16-17-1 to 16-17-10).
Hawaii 32 days $600 15% of face amount of the check Hawaii passed statutes specifically authorizing payday lending. The interest rates and fees that lenders are permitted to charge amount to very large annual percentage rates. H.C.R. 172 authorizes a review of the registration of payday lenders.
Idaho NA $1,000 No limit Idaho permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay. Lenders must comply with other provisions of the state’s small loan act.
Illinois 13-45 days The lesser of $1,000 or 25% of borrower's gross monthly income, whichever is less. $15.50 per $100 Illinois permits payday lenders to operate in Illinois. Lenders must comply with other provisions of the state’s small loan act and may not make more than one loan to a borrower at any one time. The law caps the fee that can be charged to $15.50 per each $100. This amounts to a very high effective APR. The APR for a 14-day $100 loan is 403%. Payday lenders are regulated and licensed by the Division of Financial Institutions of the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. The Payday Loan Reform Act (H.B. 1100) provides that the terms of loans, finance charges, renewals; revocations, suspensions, must be made available to the public.
Indiana 14 days min. $50-$500 ( but may not exceed borrower’s gross income) 15% on amounts <$250; 13% $251-$400; 10% $410-$500 Indiana permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay. Lenders must comply with other provisions of the state’s small loan act. Indiana (permits the charging of $33 rather than the 36% per annum applicable to other loans). The APR for a 14-day $100 loan is 390%
Iowa 31 days $500 $15 on first $100; $10 on each $100 after Lender may make no loans for more than $500 to a borrower at any given time.
Kansas 7-30 days $500 15% + administrative fee

A lender may not have more than two loans outstanding to the same borrower at any one time and may not make more than three loans to any one borrower within a 30 calendar day period. New legislation establishes limits on a payday lender’s ability to collect on payday loans from military borrowers:

  • Lenders are prohibited from garnishing the wages of military borrowers;
  • Lenders must defer all collection activity against a borrower who is deployed to combat or a combat support post for the duration of such posting; and
  • Lenders may not contact any person in the military chain of command of a borrower in an attempt to make collection.
Kentucky 14-60 days $500 $15 per $100 on amount loaned  
Louisiana 60 days $350 16.75% max. of amount loaned; $45 max fee Louisiana requires payday lenders to be licensed. And prohibits them from attaching property when collecting on payday loans.
Maine       Maine permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay. Lawmakers in Maine are considering approving changes to existing laws that would allow significant expansion of the payday loan industry. One of the proposed changes would allow lenders to charge as much as 17.5%, which would amount to $17.50 per $100. In addition, payday lenders are permitted to use advertising methods that are currently prohibited, and have greater leeway, in collection methods in the event of default than other types of creditors.
Maryland       Maryland requires payday lenders to comply with the state’s small loan or criminal usury laws. Basically, since the allowable interest rates and fees are much lower than what the payday industry usually charges, payday lenders in these states are probably operating illegally.
Massachusetts       Massachusetts requires payday lenders to comply with the state’s small loan or criminal usury laws. Basically, since the allowable interest rates and fees are much lower than what the payday industry usually charges, payday lenders in these states are probably operating illegally.
Michigan <31 days $600 15% or the first $100; 14% of amounts $100-200 13% of amounts $200 - $300; 12% of $300-400 the fourth $100; 11% of amounts $400-$600 plus administrative fees
New legislation, the Deferred Presentment Service Transactions Act (H.B. 4834)signed by Governor Granholm will regulate payday lending in Michigan by limiting loan amounts to 600 in a 31 day period and allow lenders to charge up to 15% depending on the size of the loan. Borrowers are allowed only one loan at a time. The law requires all payday lenders to be licensed by June 1, 2006, by the Office of Financial and Insurance Services. The law establishes a statewide database for lenders to determine if customers have other open transactions; and allows borrowers to file complaints with the state. The law permits payday lenders to charge service transaction and service fees for each transaction.
Minnesota 30 days $350 Ranges from $5.50 for loans up to $50 to 6% + $5 for loans $250 to $350 (i) On any amount up to and including $50, a charge of $5.50 may be added; (ii) on amounts in excess of $50, but not more than $100, a charge may be added equal to ten percent of the loan proceeds plus a $5 administrative fee; (iii) on amounts in excess of $100, but not more than $250, a charge may be added equal to seven percent of the loan proceeds with a minimum of $10 plus a $5 administrative fee; (iv) for amounts in excess of $250 and not greater than $350, a charge may be added equal to six percent of the loan proceeds with a minimum of $17.50 plus a $5 administrative fee. After maturity, the contract rate must not exceed 2.75 percent per month of the remaining loan proceeds after the maturity date calculated at a rate of 1/30 of the monthly rate in the contract for each calendar day the balance is outstanding. (Minnesota Small Loans - Chapter 47.60)
Mississippi 30 days $400 18% loan amount Mississippi passed statutes specifically authorizing payday lending. The fees and interest rates amount to very large annual percentage rates. The APR for a 14-day $100 loan is 572%.
Missouri 14-31 days $500 75% Missouri passed statutes specifically authorizing payday lending. Lenders may not charge interest and fees in excess of 75% of the initial loan amount on any single authorized loan for the entire loan term and all authorized renewals. Otherwise, interest is set pursuant to small loan law which provides that parties may set rate by contract. The APR for a 14-day $100 loan is 1980%.
Montana 31 days $50-$300 25% of face value of the check
The maximum loan cannot exceed $300 plus fees and the minimum amount is $50 plus fees. A loan cannot exceed 25% of the borrower's monthly net income (take-home pay). A borrower cannot have more than 2 loans at any one time with a single payday lender. The total of the two loans cannot exceed the $300 maximum. Payday lenders are prohibited from renewing, refinancing or consolidating payday loans. However a payday lender may extend the term of the loaned beyond the due date for no additional charge. S.B. 165 provides that a borrower has the right to rescind for one day after signing a payday loan agreement; and permits lenders to require arbitration.
Nebraska 31 days $500 15% per $100 A lender may only loan $500 maximum to any one borrower at a time. Nebraska passed statutes specifically authorizing payday lending.
Nevada NA Not to exceed 25% of the expected gross income of the borrower when the loan is made NA There are no statutory limits on fees that may be charged so long as the borrower agreed to those fees in writing. This amount to a very high APR. Payday lenders are licensed in Nevada.
New Hampshire 7-30 days $500 Only interest may be charged on loans; No fees are permitted New Hampshire permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay. Lenders must comply with other provisions of the state’s small loan act. New Hampshire removed its interest rate cap effective 1/1/2000.
New Jersey       New Jersey does not have specific payday lending legislation and permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay.
New Mexico NA NA No limit New Mexico permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay. Lenders must comply with other provisions of the state's small loan act.
New York       New York does not have specific payday lending legislation and permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay.
North Carolina       North Carolina passed statutes specifically authorizing payday lending. The fees and interest rates that payday lenders are permitted to charge amount to very large annual percentage rates. For example, North Carolina permits a 15% charge on a maximum loan amount of $300. This means that the consumer will receive $255 in cash and the lender will pocket a $45 fee. If a $300 loan at this rate is repaid in two weeks, the APR is about 458%.
North Dakota 60 days $500 20% of loan plus database fee The maximum rate of interest that can be charged on a $200 loan is 30%.
Ohio 6 months $800 5% per month on unpaid balance plus $5 fee; plus $3.75 fee for every $50 above $500 The APR for a 14-day $100 loan is 390%.
Oklahoma 12-45 days $500 15% up to $300; 10% $300 to $500 Oklahoma passed statutes specifically authorizing payday lending. The fees and interest rates that payday lenders are permitted to charge amount to very large annual percentage rates. APR for a 14-day $100 loan is 390%.
Oregon 60 days No more than 25% of net monthly income No limit New legislation enacted in 2006 (S.B. 1105), sets new restrictions on lenders by limiting the maximum rate of interest on payday loans, the amount of the loan origination fees; sets a minimum 31-day loan term for payday loans; prohibits charges other than interest, origination fees and fees for dishonored check or insufficient funds; prohibits the renewal of payday loans more than two times; prohibits a lender from making a new payday loan to a consumer within seven days of expiration of the previous payday loan; Limits the amount of the fee for a dishonored check or insufficient funds; prohibits recovery of statutory damages and attorney fees from consumers for dishonored checks; and grants rulemaking authority to Director of Department of Consumer and Business Services.
Pennsylvania       Pennsylvania does not have specific payday lending legislation and permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay.
Puerto Rico       Puerto Rico requires payday lenders to comply with the state’s small loan or criminal usury laws. Basically, since the allowable interest rates and fees are much lower than what the payday industry usually charges, payday lenders in these states are probably operating illegally.
Rhode Island 13 days min. $500 15% of the face amount of the check Rhode Island requires payday lenders to comply with the state’s small loan or criminal usury laws. The APR for a 14-day $100 loan is 390%.
South Carolina 31 days $300 15% of the face amount of the check South Carolina passed statutes authorizing payday lending. The fees and interest rates that payday lenders are permitted to charge amount to very large annual percentage rates. The APR for a 14-day $100 loan is 459%.
South Dakota NA $500 No limit South Dakota permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay. Lenders must comply with other provisions of the state’s small loan act. This amounts to very large annual percentage rates.
Tennessee 31 days $500 15% of the face amount of the check Tennessee passed statutes specifically authorizing payday lending. The fees and interest rates that payday lenders are permitted to charge amount to very large annual percentage rates. The effective APR for a 14-day $100 loan is 459%.
Texas 7-31 days None 10% per loan plus 48% annual interest + $12 monthly fee Texas does not have specific payday lending legislation and permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay. The effective APR for a 14-day $100 loan is 309%. S.B. 1479 protects military members and their families from some actions by payday lenders, and requires lenders to make special disclosures to military borrowers.
Utah NA None No limit Utah passed statutes authorizing payday lending. The fees that payday lenders may charge amount to very large annual percentage rates, although there is a limit on the interest that can be charged on judgments related to a payday loans.
Vermont       Vermont does not have specific payday lending legislation and permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay.
Virgin Islands   $7,500   The Virgin Islands requires payday lenders to comply with the state's small loan law which maintain interest rate caps of up to 26% per annum. Basically since the allowable interest rates and fees are lower than that which the payday lenders usually charge, payday loans are not practical.
Virginia 7 days min. $500 15% plus a fee for 6% late payments

In Virginia payday lenders must be licensed when making loans to Virginia residents whether or not they have a business in Virginia. Payday lenders cannot:

  • Make more than one loan to a borrower at any time;
  • Renew or extend any loan;
  • Lend to military personnel located in certain locations declared ‘off-limits’ by a military base commander;
  • Garnish military wages or conduct collection activities when the borrower is deployed to a combat or a combat support post.
Washington 45 days $700 15% up to $500; 10% of the principal in excess of $500

Licenses lenders may loan up to $700 at one time, In general the usury rate in Washington is 12% per year or 4% above the treasury bill rate. However Washington state-chartered Credit Unions may offer loans to their members at 15%. Washington requires payday lenders to be licensed and has special rules for military borrowers: Payday lenders are prohibited from:

  • Garnishing a military borrower’s wages s;
  • Contacting the borrower’s chain of command in an effort to collect on a delinquent loan; and
  • Make a loan to a person that the licensee knows is a military borrower from a location that a military base commander has notified the licensee in writing is designated off-limits to military personnel
  • May not collect against a military borrower who has been deployed to a combat or combat support post for the duration of the posting
  • Must honor the terms of any repayment agreement negotiated between the borrower and lender, or through military counselors or third party credit counselor on behalf of the military borrower

A "military borrower" includes any active duty member of the armed forces of the United States, any member of the National Guard or the reserves of the armed forces of the United States who has been called to active duty S.B. 5415. The effective APR for a 14-day $100 loan is 390%.

West Virginia       West Virginia in an apparent attempt to discourage payday loans, passed laws which requires payday lenders to comply with the state’s small loan and usury laws. Basically since the allowable interest rates and fees are substantially below that which the payday industry charges, payday lenders in these states are likely operating illegally.
Wisconsin NA NA No limit Wisconsin permits payday lenders to operate and charge any interest rate or fees which the borrower agrees to pay. Lenders must comply with other provisions of the state’s small loan act.
Wyoming 30 days NA $30 or 20%, of the principal whichever is greater Wyoming law regulates payday lenders with physical addressees in Wyoming, which must be licensed. The rates are based in a full calendar month. For example if the total amount loaned is $100 the most that could be charged is $30 since $30 is greater than $20 which is 20% of the amount borrowed. If the amount borrowed is $200 for 14 days, the highest amount that may be charged is $30 [14 days/31 days x 20% x $200 = $18.06]. Rolling over is prohibited. A lender may permit the borrower to repay original finance charges in installments but may not charge an additional fee for that convenience. The APR for a 14-day $100 loanis 780%.
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Alternatives to Payday Loan

Before you decide to take out a payday loan, consider some alternatives.

  1. Consider a small loan from your credit union or a small loan company. Some banks may offer short-term loans for small amounts at competitive rates. A local community-based organization may make small business loans to people. A cash advance on a credit card also may be possible, but it may have a higher interest rate than other sources of funds: find out the terms before you decide. In any case, shop first and compare all available offers.
  2. Shop for the credit offer with the lowest cost. Compare the APR and the finance charge, which includes loan fees, interest and other credit costs. You are looking for the lowest APR. Military personnel have special protections against super-high fees or rates, and all consumers in some states and the District of Columbia have some protections dealing with limits on rates. Even with these protections, payday loans can be expensive, particularly if you roll-over the loan and are responsible for paying additional fees. Other credit offers may come with lower rates and costs.
  3. Contact your creditors or loan servicer as quickly as possible if you are having trouble with your payments, and ask for more time. Many may be willing to work with consumers who they believe are acting in good faith. They may offer an extension on your bills; make sure to find out what the charges would be for that service — a late charge, an additional finance charge, or a higher interest rate.
  4. Contact your local consumer credit counseling service if you need help working out a debt repayment plan with creditors or developing a budget. Non-profit groups in every state offer credit guidance to consumers for no or low cost. You may want to check with your employer, credit union, or housing authority for no- or low-cost credit counseling programs, too.
  5. Make a realistic budget, including your monthly and daily expenditures, and plan, plan, plan. Try to avoid unnecessary purchases: the costs of small, every-day items like a cup of coffee add up. At the same time, try to build some savings: small deposits do help. A savings plan — however modest — can help you avoid borrowing for emergencies. Saving the fee on a $300 payday loan for six months, for example, can help you create a buffer against financial emergencies.
  6. Find out if you have — or if your bank will offer you — overdraft protection on your checking account. If you are using most or all the funds in your account regularly and you make a mistake in your account records, overdraft protection can help protect you from further credit problems. Find out the terms of the overdraft protection available to you — both what it costs and what it covers. Some banks offer “bounce protection,” which may cover individual overdrafts from checks or electronic withdrawals, generally for a fee. It can be costly, and may not guarantee that the bank automatically will pay the overdraft.

The bottom line on payday loans: Try to find an alternative. If you must use one, try to limit the amount. Borrow only as much as you can afford to pay with your next paycheck — and still have enough to make it to next payday.

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For Military Consumers

Payday loans (and certain other financing) offered to servicemembers and their dependents must include certain protections, under Federal law and a Department of Defense rule. For example, for payday loans offered after October 1, 2007, the military annual percentage rate cannot exceed 36%. Most fees and charges, with few exceptions, are included in the rate. Creditors also may not, for example, require use of a check or access to a bank account for the loan, mandatory arbitration, and unreasonable legal notices. Military consumers also must be given certain disclosures about the loan costs and your rights. Credit agreements that violate the protections are void. Creditors that offer payday loans may ask loan applicants to sign a statement about their military affiliation.

Even with these protections, payday loans can be costly, especially if you roll-over the loan. You instead may be able to obtain financial assistance from military aid societies, such as the Army Emergency Relief, Navy and Marine Corps Relief Society, Air Force Aid Society, or Coast Guard Mutual Aid. You may be able to borrow from families or friends, or get an advance on your paycheck from your employer. If you still need credit, loans from a credit union, bank, or a small loan company may offer you lower rates and costs. They may have special offers for military applicants, and may help you start a savings account. A cash advance on your credit card may be possible, but it could be costly. Find out the terms for any credit before you sign. You may request free legal advice about a credit application from a service legal assistance office, or financial counseling from a consumer credit counselor, including about deferring your payments.

Military consumers can contact the Department of Defense, toll-free 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, at 1-800-342-9647, or at www.militaryonesource.com. Information on the Department of Defense rule, alternatives to payday loans, financial planning, and other guidance is available.

This article was previously available as Payday Loans Equal Very Costly Cash: Consumers Urged to Consider the Alternatives.

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