Criminal Interest Rates
The offence of criminal interest rates is outlined in section 347(1) of the Criminal Code.
A person commits the offence of criminal interest rates where they agree to receive interest at an annual rate of interest that exceeds 60% of the credit advanced, or where they receive full or partial payment of interest at such a rate.
Person A loans $50 to person B, requiring that person B repay person A $150 in interest for this loan.
Person D sells a car to person E. Person D agrees to pay person E monthly until the car is paid off, which will take roughly two years. Person D adds 70% interest per year to the purchase price of the vehicle.
R. v. Chan, 2014 ONSC 1411
In R. v. Chan, the two accused were charged with criminal interest rates for charging their victims an annual interest rate of 520% on their money loans.
Offence Specific Defence(s)
Not a Criminal Rate
Where the annual interest rate does not exceed 60% of the credit advanced, the person will not have completed the offence of criminal interest rates.
No Agreement or Payment
Where the person does not agree to receive or effectively receive any payment of interest that exceeds 60% of the credit advanced, they will not have completed the offence of criminal interest rates.
No AG Consent
All proceedings for charges of criminal interest rates must be started with the consent of the Attorney General. Where the Attorney General has not provided their consent, a person cannot be tried for or convicted of criminal interest rates.