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Bill that could limit Hoosier debt protections heads to governor’s desk

A photo of several bank cards
Pixabay
A bill that could limit debt protections for Hoosiers is headed to the governor’s desk.

A bill that could limit debt protections for Hoosiers is headed to the governor’s desk. If signed by the governor, Senate Bill 188 would shorten the period of time Hoosiers have to dispute charges and other issues with their banks from six years to two years.

Supporters of the bill said financial institutions have been subject to class action lawsuits over the past few years that have led to settlements solely due to the high legal costs of these cases.

Sen. Scott Baldwin (R-Noblesville) authored the bill. He said he hopes it limits the amount of financial institutions targeted by these lawsuits.

Indiana’s debt protection laws were identified by a report from the National Consumer Law Center as weak. Opponents of the measure said this further harms consumers and provides them fewer opportunities to settle with their banks over unfair charges. In prior hearings, advocates asserted class action lawsuits can be helpful for consumers, as they can “hold financial institutions accountable.”

Many of these claims are addressed in class action lawsuits, which some said provides an opportunity to “hold institutions accountable for small harms across many people.”

If signed into law, the bill will take effect July 1.

Violet is our daily news reporter. Contact her at vcomberwilen@wfyi.org or follow her on Twitter at @ComberWilen.