Can an on-line payday loan company request a warrant for a person’s arrest for theft due to non-payment?

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Can an on-line payday loan company request a warrant for a person’s arrest for theft due to non-payment?

They threatened to have me charged with theft by deception.

Asked on May 17, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Louisiana

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

The fact is that person who has borrowed money cannot be threatened with arrest for non-payment.  In this day and age people don not go to jail for owing money; debtor's prison wnet out about the time of Dickens.  The only exception would be if fraud was committed in obtaining the money; that would be a crime. 

So, for example, if you scammed someone into lending money and you had no intentionof repaying.  Absent that, neither a debt collector or creditor may threaten you with criminal charges.  If they do you could actually sue them.  Additionally, they can not harass or otherwise intimidate you. It's the law - the "Fair Debt Collections Practices Act" (FDCPA). 

Note:  This doesn't mean that you don't owe the money.  In setting up a re-payment plan just be careful in just what information that you give them (especially banking information).


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