The rule imposes limits and conditions on payday lenders in an effort to protect borrowers from falling into a cycle of debt. By requiring a “full-payment test,” payday lenders will be required to make an upfront assessment of a borrower’s ability to repay their loan.

Read the full CFPB rule

Read the CFPB fact sheet

Please contact Jenna Severson ( or Brent Adams ( or (312)368-0310 for more information.

Woodstock Institute has a long history of both research and advocacy work surrounding predatory lending. Below you will find a selection of materials—research reports, press releases, letters, and expert testimony— from our involvement on the issue.

Read our Illinois-specific fact sheet “Support New National Payday Loan Protections”

Recent Woodstock Press Releases

Woodstock Institute, Senator Durbin to Defend New Payday Loan Rule

October 13, 2017

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Releases Historic, Nationwide Protection Against Payday Loan Abuse

October 5, 2017

Banks Want Back in the Payday Lending Business

July 28, 2017

Don’t Let Payday Loans Turn Your Holiday Dreams Into A Nightmare!

December 21, 2016

National Payday Rule Could Save Illinois Millions

June 3, 2016

A birthday wish for the CFPB: Strong payday loan protections

July 21, 2015

Woodstock Research Reports

No Right Turn: Illinois’ Auto Title Loan Industry and its Impact on Consumers

October 28, 2015

This study examines the auto title lending industry in Illinois. Auto title loans are a type of high-cost, small-dollar loan. They are similar to payday loans, but are secured by the title to the borrower’s automobile. Title lenders operate in 25 states across the country, and each year an estimated two million American consumers take out title loans. This report examines data from two reports on the consumer lending industry released by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulations (IDFPR) and loan-level data from court records of collection cases filed in Cook County.

The Case for Banning Payday Lending: Snapshots from Four Key States

June 3, 2013

For years, community groups and advocates around the country have waged pitched battles to eliminate payday lending in their respective states. Notwithstanding extensive documentation of the payday lending debt trap and the billions of dollars payday lenders have systematically stripped from low-income families and communities, especially those of color, the payday lending industry has cannily built and exerted its political power in state capitols throughout the U.S. As a result, many states permit usurious payday lending, with often dire consequences for millions of payday loan borrowers already struggling to make ends meet.

Beyond Payday Loans: Consumer Installment Lending in Illinois

March 19, 2009

The Illinois Payday Loan Loophole

April 25, 2008

Debt Detour: The Automobile Title Loan Industry in Illinois

November 13, 2007

Hunting Down the Payday Loan Customer: The Debt Collection Practices of Two Payday Loan Companies

September 28, 2006

Regulating Payday Loans – How Does The Illinois Payday Loan Reform Act Compare to Other States

February 15, 2005

Reinvestment Alert 16: Affordable Alternatives to Payday Loans: Examples from Community Development

May 8, 2001

Reinvestment Alert 14: Unregulated Payday Lending Pulls Vulnerable Consumers Into Spiraling Debt

March 7, 2000

Woodstock Letters & Testimony

Letter to CFPB Director Cordray on Proposed Payday Lending Rule

October 7, 2016

This comment letter was submitted to CFPB on October 7, 2016.  It expresses Woodstock’s support for the Bureau’s proposed payday lending rule as well as recommendations on the part of Woodstock Institute and the Monsignor John Egan Campaign for Payday Loan Reform as to how the rule might be strengthened. These recommendations include applying the ability-to-repay standard to all loans, extending the loan cooling-off period to 60 days, and the establishment of a limit on total days of borrowers’ indebtedness. 

Testimony of Spencer Cowan before the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau regarding issues in the credit card and payday loan markets

October 23, 2013

Testimony of Spencer Cowan before the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau field hearing on the impact of the Credit CARD Act. Cowan thanked the CFPB for enforcement actions against credit card issuers and urged them to assess the pricing of add-on products and restrict up-front fees. Cowan also recommended that the CFPB enact consumer protections for all high-cost small-dollar loans, including installment loans and auto title loans.

Other Resources

Stop the Debt Trap Website

Prepared by Illinois People’s Action, with support from various national consumer advocate groups

Illinois Trends in Payday Lending 2015 

Published under IL Gov. Rauner’s Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR)

S. 1659 “Protecting Consumers from Unreasonable Credit Rates Act of 2017’’

Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) Bill to establish 36% usury APR cap on all loans. The proposal would amend the Truth in Lending Act.

Joint Letter of Support for S. 1659/ H.R. 3760 

Published September 20, 2017 by Center for Responsible Lending (CRL)

Illinois ‘Stop Payday Predators’ Fact Sheet

Prepared by Illinois People’s Action

5 Percent Loophole Fact Sheet

Analysis prepared by Center for Responsible Lending (CRL)

Payday Lending Industry and Campaign Contributions

Published May 16, 2017 by Center for Responsive Politics

‘Race Matters: The Concentration of Payday Lenders in African-American Neighborhoods in North Carolina’ Report

Published March 22, 2005 by Center for Responsible Lending

Unbanked and Underbanked in Illinois

Statistics based off 2015 FDIC National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households

Shark-Free Waters: States are Better Off without Payday Lending’ Report

Published August 2016 (September 2017 update) by the Center for Responsible Lending

Strong Bi-Partisan Support for CFPB Payday Lending Regulations Report

 Published January 22, 2015 by the Center for Responsible Lending