About Loan Sharks in the Philippines

All About Loan Sharks in the Philippines

All About Loan Sharks in the Philippines
Romeo Alvarez

Filipinos are known to approach 5-6 moneylenders in times of financial emergencies. However, taking a loan from a shark is a quick way to get into debt and spiral out of control.

These illegal lenders charge exorbitant interest rates and use threats and harassment to collect payments from borrowers. To protect yourself, always look for a lender that discloses all fees upfront.

What is a loan shark?

A loan shark is a type of unlicensed moneylender who often operates outside the law. They provide loans to people who are desperate for cash, usually at a rate that is far beyond the legal limit laid out by state law. They also typically enforce repayment with threats and violence. Loan sharks can operate as individuals or businesses, and are usually members of organized crime groups.

In most cases, loan sharks target those who are struggling to make ends meet and live paycheck to paycheck. They may use social media to lure victims in, promising a quick loan that is almost impossible to repay. Once a person has borrowed from a loan shark, they can find themselves in an endless cycle of debt as the lender adds extra fees and interest to their original loan. In extreme cases, the loan shark may even threaten violence or take away valuables to force a borrower to pay back their debt.

While the high cost of living can lead to financial pressures, it is important to remember that there are legal and authorised alternatives to borrowing from loan sharks. Credit unions and specialist bad credit lenders are a better option than loan sharks, as they offer lower interest rates and can help you build your credit history.

Loan sharks are illegal because they offer high interest rates, are unlicensed, and often use intimidation and threats to collect their debt. They also often demand large sums of money upfront, and don’t require any paperwork to confirm the arrangement they have made with a borrower. This makes it difficult for borrowers to shop around and compare lenders before borrowing from a loan shark.

Most loan sharks operate outside the law, but they can be found in under-banked neighborhoods or on the internet. They are often members of organized crime groups and offer fast, easy loans to desperate borrowers. Loan sharks charge extremely high interest rates, which can be difficult for a desperate borrower to afford, and they enforce repayment with violence and intimidation.

If you have been contacted by someone who claims to be a loan shark, it is always best to contact the police straight away. It is also important to be aware that there are a number of legally authorised options for borrowers with poor credit, such as payday loans, logbook lending, and second-chance banks.

How do loan sharks operate?

While a loan may be necessary in certain financial emergencies, not all loan providers have your best interest in mind. In fact, some of them are even dangerous and predatory, preying on the vulnerable to bleed you dry. These types of loan providers are known as loan sharks and they are more common than you might think.

Typically, loan sharks operate in the shadows and do not require any documentation from their borrowers, making it difficult to trace them. This also makes them prone to abuse, like adding extra charges whenever they see fit. They also often do not provide a written loan agreement, which can be very confusing to those who are already in deep debt. Loan sharks are also known to resort to threats and violence when a borrower can’t pay them back, causing further stress and anxiety for the victims.

Although loan sharks are illegal, many people still fall victim to their practices because of their desperate need for money. The government is trying to combat this issue by implementing programs that offer cheaper loans to those in need. One such program is the Pondo sa Pagbabago at Pag-Asenso (P3), which offers small loans to micro, small, and medium enterprises. The loans are capped at 26% per year, which is significantly lower than the 20% interest rate that many loan sharks charge.

In addition, the Philippines has laws that prohibit loan sharks and other illegal money lenders from harassing borrowers. The best way to protect yourself from loan sharks is to only borrow money from licensed lending companies and financial institutions that are regulated by the government. This will ensure that you are getting a fair deal and that you’re not paying more than what you should be. It’s also important to read and understand the terms and conditions of any loan before agreeing to it, so make sure to ask questions if you’re unsure about something. This will help to prevent you from falling into a cycle of debt that can be impossible to break out of.

How do I avoid getting scammed by a loan shark?

One way to avoid getting scammed by loan sharks is to do your research before borrowing money. Make sure to only borrow from reputable lenders that are licensed by the authorities and have a good reputation in the industry. Also, only borrow from lenders who offer reasonable interest rates and repayment periods. It is important to understand the different factors that influence a lender’s interest rate and fees so you can choose a personal loan that works best for you.

Another way to prevent yourself from falling victim to loan sharks is to always get a written agreement and keep track of your debt payments. Loan sharks usually operate without a legal contract or documentation, which makes it easier for them to add additional charges to your debt. This can quickly escalate and bury you in debt. Furthermore, loan sharks often resort to threats and harassment when they cannot collect their debt from borrowers, which can be dangerous for the borrower.

In the Philippines, loan sharks typically target borrowers who are desperate for cash and have low financial literacy. They charge exorbitant interest rates and use intimidation and blackmail to collect their loans. The most common examples of loan sharks in the country are 5-6 lenders and sangla ATM lenders, who are unlicensed entities that lend shady short-term loans with high interest rates. Unlike banks and private lenders, these informal moneylenders don’t conduct credit checks or background investigations on their clients.

If you have been scammed by a loan shark, be sure to report it immediately. This can help prevent other people from becoming victims as well. Also, consider contacting a debt counselor to learn more about your options for dealing with your debt.

In addition, if you have concerns about the legitimacy of a fintech company, check whether it is registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. You can also look for information on the company’s website about its business operations and the type of funding it offers. This can help you distinguish legitimate fintech companies from those that are not regulated and may pose a risk to your business.

If you’ve been a victim of loan shark harassment, the best thing you can do is seek legal advice. A lawyer will help you explore your options for recovering any money you may have lost and protect you from future scams. They can also help you negotiate with the loan shark or their representatives to try and reach a fair and reasonable settlement or payment plan.

Another thing you can do is report the incident to the proper authorities. The authorities will then investigate the matter and take appropriate action. This will prevent other people from falling victim to the same situation as you and will make sure that the culprits are held accountable.

Finally, you can also contact a debt counselor. A debt counselor will help you create a budget and develop a plan for paying off your debts. They will also be able to help you avoid getting scammed by loan sharks in the future.

Loan sharks are predatory lenders that prey on borrowers who need quick cash and have poor credit history. They offer high interest rates and often resort to threats and blackmail to collect their debts. Loan sharks are prevalent in the Philippines and are a major source of financial distress for many Filipinos.

In order to avoid being scammed by a loan shark, it is important to always read and understand the terms and conditions of any loan agreement before agreeing to it. You should also only borrow from licensed lending companies and financial institutions. This will help ensure that you are not being charged excessive interest rates, which are illegal in the Philippines under the Anti-Usury Law.

Additionally, it is important to only borrow from lenders who are registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. Finally, it is also a good idea to avoid borrowing from informal lenders such as 5-6 and sangla ATM lenders, as they can often charge extremely high interest rates.

Last Updated 10.05.2024
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