Q:

Is Plain Green Loans a scam?

A:

Quick Answer

Plain Green Loans is operated by Plain Green, LLC, of the Chippewa Cree Tribe, which acts as a Native American sovereign nation within the United States. The company offers short-term loans at annual interest rates between 299 percent and 379 percent, according to Plaingreenloans.com.

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Full Answer

After states enacted laws to reign in the payday loan industry, online tribal lenders replaced local services, notes The Huffington Post. Plain Green Loans provides somewhat lower interest rates and longer repayment times than standard payday lenders, while the business supplies revenue and jobs that are lacking in the Chippewa's remote location in Montana.

Tribal lending, like tribal casinos, occurs because the tribal reservations are considered separate nations for many purposes, operating on a parallel basis with the federal government, according to the Bureau of Indian Affairs. For this reason, tribal lenders say they are not subject to state-level laws.

With the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau now monitoring payday lenders, the American Bar Association expects these lenders to face stricter scrutiny. Additionally, lenders that have non-tribal partners or do not cooperate in court cases are skirting the law.

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