Refinancing of short-term loans OCCP unequivocally assesses the rolling-over loans. Thus, this type of operation was recognized as harmful to consumers.
Recently OCCP initiated proceedings against four Warsaw-based companies that acted through one financial intermediary and offered to refinance short-term loans. This time the UOKiK has targeted loans granted through the portals Szybkagotowka.pl and Freezl.pl. Their owner is Compare Group from the United Arab Emirates. The portals cooperate with three lending companies from Warsaw: Szybka Gotówka, Gwarant24 and Centrum Rozwiązań Kredytowych, which provide loans of between 1 and 30 days.
The Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (OCCP) points out that the lenders offered only refinancing with another company instead of extending the repayment period. Sometimes this scenario was repeated multiple times for a given consumer. Each of these companies charged a commission, which was financed in whole or in part from the next loan.
I accused Szybka Gotówka, Gwarant24 and Centrum Rozwiązań Kredytowych of violating the collective interests of consumers. In our view, the companies in question are trying to circumvent the limits on non-interest costs of loans under the Consumer Credit Act. By doing so they expose consumers to unlawfully high fees and commissions and risk falling into a debt spiral. Such practices are punishable by penalties of up to 10% of the annual turnover – says Tomasz Chróstny, President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection.
Therefore, it seems that entities operating in a similar business model as the one indicated above may expect proceedings before the Office for Competition and Consumer Protection.
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