Can You Go to Jail for Not Paying Payday Loans in Texas?

By Steve Smith

  • Overview

    Not paying a debt is not a criminal offense. There are no laws that say you can be arrested for any type of offense, criminal, misdemeanor or otherwise. This applies to every state in the country, including Texas. Just imagine what it would be like if a company could put you in jail for not paying a bill. More than half the country would be in prison.
  • Payday Loans are a Debt, like a Car Loan

    Since a payday loan is a personal loan which you pay interest on, there are no civil penalties for defaulting on it. The loan itself is no different than a car loan, or other bank personal loan. The payday loan company is simply lending you money, so not paying them back is not a crime in Texas, or any other state. It can only be reflected on your credit report.
  • Fraud Laws

    In Texas, their are laws on the books against check fraud, and embezzling, which is stealing funds or transferring funds into your own account from a company or corporation. The only way you can go to jail for not paying a payday loan in Texas, is if you issued a fake check, or fabricated documents in order to get the loan. The latter example would still be a difficult case to prove, and probably would not even be pursued by the district attorney, unless you made a pattern of defrauding these payday loan companies.


  • Collections on a Payday Loan

    If you have not paid a payday loan and are being harassed by a collection agency, there are laws to protect you. Collection agents can not call on any debt (payday loan or not) between the hours of 9 pm and 8 am. They may also not contact you at work if you request they do not do this.
  • Stopping Collection Harassment

    In order to stop harassment on a payday loan collection account, you should write the credit collection company a letter, asking that the company cease and desist all attempts to contact you. It is actually illegal for a collection agent to threaten you with jail time if there is no criminal case pending against you. If a collection agent threatens you with jail time, you can contact the attorney general and file a civil complaint. You should have no fear that the attorney general will come back at you with a criminal case, because there is none.
  • Rules for Getting a Payday Loan

    The rules for getting a payday loan are set by the loan company and are based on risk factors that the company determines themselves. They are based on risk projections that all loan companies use, and may be subjected to rules and requirements set forth by the company that loans the money to them. The loans are considered a high risk debt, and they always carry a higher interest rate. On the flip side, they also permit a lower credit score and may not require a background check or credit score check.
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