Controversial Legislator Proposes 4% Interest Rate Cap in New Hampshire

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New Hampshire’s Live Free or Die attitude could be challenged by a bill introduced by the state legislature. House Bill 1800-FN-LOCAL, AN ACT relative to usury, proposes a maximum annual rate of interest allowed in all business transactions in which interest is paid or secured to be capped at 4%. Any interest beyond that would automatically warrant a $10,000 fine to the state treasury by the violator. If passed, the law would go into effect beginning April 1, 2018.

New Hampshire currently has no law governing interest rate limits.

One of the Bill’s sponsors, 86-year-old Representative Dick Marple, was arrested twice in 2016. One of those arrests occurred on the day that he was re-elected.

Marple’s interest rate cap bill and the $10,000 penalty therein for violations, is similar to another bill he proposed last month that would recognize “sovereign citizens.” House Bill 1653, would allow individuals to levy $10,000 fines against corporations and municipal agencies for failures to comply with a proposed modified Uniform Commercial Code law.

Marple’s sovereign citizen beliefs played out in a trial last year where he was found guilty of driving on a suspended license. In the Court’s order, the Honorable M. Kristin Spath wrote, “Although the Court urged Mr. Marple to actively participate in the trial, he declined to do so because of his continued belief that this Court does not have the authority or jurisdiction to hear these matters.”

Last modified: January 22, 2018
Sean Murray

Category: Regulation

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