On 24 February 2012 the UK’s consumer authority, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT), announced its intention to review the payday lending sector. Given the OFT’s approach and powers of enforcement, payday lenders should take proactive steps to prepare for the close scrutiny which will inevitably follow, not just from the OFT, but from consumer action groups and the UK press. Our publication examines the scope of the OFT's review, the approach and actions the department may take, and next steps for payday lenders in the UK.
Squire Sanders has a global profile of helping consumer credit businesses, including a number of payday lending clients, in the preparation for, and resolution of, regulatory action. In the UK, we have particular (and first-hand) experience dealing with the OFT and deep knowledge of consumer credit law. Our recent experience includes resolving with the OFT, on favourable terms, a very high-profile investigation and challenging the OFT’s decision to refuse a consumer credit licence. We authored the most up-to-date textbook dealing solely with consumer credit law and regulation, Consumer Credit: Law, Practice and Precedents, which was published by the Law Society in January 2012.