POLITICS

Ontario payday loan review expanded to include cheque cashing, debt collection

06/15/2015 04:19 EDT | Updated 06/15/2016 05:59 EDT
TORONTO - An Ontario review of payday loan legislation is being expanded to include other high-cost alternative financial services such as cheque cashing.

The Liberal government announced in September 2013 it would review the Payday Loans Act and says that since then concerns were raised about other services.

It has launched a public consultation, open until Aug. 14, on payday loans and included cheque cashing, money transfer services, instalment loans and experiences with debt collection agencies.

The review is studying stronger protections for consumers against multiple loans and roll-over loans and the maximum total cost of borrowing, which is currently capped at a $21 fee for every $100 borrowed.

There are more than 800 payday loan lenders and loan brokers in Ontario.

The Consumer Protection Act already sets out general protections for consumers, but the government's public consultation paper says specific legislative or regulatory reform could address alternative financial services, including uniform disclosures of pricing, establishing price regulation or a new licensing regime.