California  |  Credit and Debt Law

Legal Question

Asked on: 8/17/13, 4:44 pm

I got an offer from my credit card where I could borrow money at 0% APR for one year, after which the rate would go up to 20%. There was a 3% fee upfront. I took $1000 on this offer, and loaned it to a friend (I wrote him a check for $970, but he's to pay me back $1000, so the transaction fee is covered.) The arrangement we made was that he would pay the money back in full before interest accrued -- that is, within one year. If it wasn't paid by then, we agreed he would pay the interest that the card charged me, 20%, untii it was paid in full. I know I shouldn't loan money to friends, and I never will again. At the time, we both talked about the loan as if it would of course be paid off before the year was up. Now, it's been 11 months. We're no longer friends. He claims he will "live up to contract as written." However, I know now that I can't charge him the 20% I will be charged, as that would be usury. What should I do now? I need him to just pay in full before the year is up -- since part of the contract wasn't legal, can it just be removed? Thanks.

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