AG Herring reaches settlement with Fredericksburg-area pawnbroker

Attorney General Mark Herring announced today that his office has reached a settlement with Spotsylvania Gold & Pawn Inc., a Fredericksburg-area pawnbroker, to provide nearly $37,000 in refunds to more than 1,400 consumers to resolve allegations that the company charged illegal interest and fees beyond those permitted by Virginia’s pawnbroker statutes and the Virginia Consumer Protection Act.

mark herring“Pawnbrokers across the Commonwealth are skirting laws and overcharging consumers, and I won’t stop going after those that take advantage of Virginians,” said Attorney General Herring. “I encourage Virginians who are considering using a pawn shop or other small dollar loan lender to closely review the terms and know their rights before signing anything that might result in even more hard-earned money coming out of their pockets.”

The settlement includes the following key terms:

  • Spotsylvania Pawn agrees to offer refunds totaling $36,916.60 to more than 1,400 borrowers representing the amounts those borrowers paid beyond what Virginia’s pawnbroker statutes allow, and will reimburse the Commonwealth for expenses, costs, and attorney’s fees.
  • A permanent injunction preventing Spotsylvania Pawn from violating the Virginia statutes applicable to pawnbrokers and the VCPA.
  • Individual consumers who received loans from Spotsylvania Pawn during the period from June 1, 2015 to March 31, 2016 and who have questions about the settlement may contact the company directly at (571) 572-0194.

The civil settlement is in the form of an Assurance of Voluntary Compliance filed for approval with the Spotsylvania County Circuit Court.

Attorney General Herring has brought actions against a number of Virginia pawnshops for charging illegal interest or making illegal auto title loans, and has partnered with the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to enforce state and federal consumer finance statutes.

Attorney General Herring and his recently reorganized Consumer Protection Section have successfully brought enforcement actions against predatory lendersretailers exploiting veterans and military familiesfake charities, and anticompetitive mergers. During Attorney General Herring’s administration the OAG Consumer Protection Section has won approximately $147 million in consumer debt forgiveness, $24.8 million in restitution, and $32 million in civil penalties and attorneys’ fees, and transferred nearly $7 million to the Commonwealth’s General Fund.