Consumers should be aware that the maximum interest rates allowed under the law may be significantly higher than what is being offered in the market. The interest rate offered by a lender may be influenced by factors specific to your loan such as your credit history, the amount of the loan, the type of collateral, and the terms of the loan, including the length of time a purchase is financed and whether payments will be made on an installment basis or as one lump sum due at the end of the term (also known as a “balloon payment”). Because of possible variations from lender to lender, it is important for consumers to “shop around” and check the rates and terms offered by different lenders, including banks, credit unions, and non-depository lenders in order to negotiate the best terms for the type of loans desired.
Consumers should be aware of the following Georgia laws which place limitations and create requirements for different types of loans:
- O.C.G.A. §§ 7-3-1 through 7-3-52 (Georgia Installment Loan Act) regulates loans of $3,000.00 or less and the lenders that make such loans.
- O.C.G.A. §§ 7-4-1 through 7-4-21 sets forth the general interest rates lenders are permitted to charge
- O.C.G.A. §§ 7-5-1 through 7-5-7 regulates credit card charges and fees
- O.C.G.A. §§ 10-1-1 through 10-1-16 regulates retail installment contracts
- O.C.G.A. §§ 10-1-30 through 10-1-42 regulates motor vehicle sales financing
- O.C.G.A. §§ 44-12-130 through 44-12-138 regulates pawnbrokers, pawn transactions, and title pawn transactions
 To access these laws or any part of the Georgia Code, please visit the Georgia General Assembly and type in the relevant Code Section (e.g., “7-3-1”) into the provided search bar. (Links off-site)
The Code is provided by the State of Georgia from the Georgia General Assembly's website. In viewing the Code, please be aware that legislation passed during the most recent legislative session may not yet be posted on LexisNexis.