Rent-to-own stores may be excused from consumer protection laws - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Rent-to-own stores may be excused from consumer protection laws

MADISON (WKOW) -- The Legislature's Joint Finance Committee may consider provisions in Governor Scott Walker's executive budget that would exempt rent-to-own stores from Wisconsin's consumer protection laws.

Rent-to-own stores let customers rent items such as appliances and electronics with no credit check.  Customers can buy the items when they complete their contracts.

Critics say the businesses charge very high interest rates and prey on the needy.  But industry advocates say the contracts aren't credit transactions and shouldn't be subject to the state's consumer protection laws.

Walker's budget would create a new section of law governing rent-to-own that wouldn't require the businesses to disclose interest rates.

The finance committee is expected to review the provisions on Thursday, May 23.

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