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TC declares constitutional law that protects consumers of financial services from usury

TC declares constitutional law that protects consumers of financial services from usury

The Constitutional Court (TC) declared unfounded the unconstitutionality claims presented by the Ica Bar Association and the Executive Branch, against Law 31143, which protects consumers of financial services from usury.

The ruling issued on files 00010-2021-PI/TC and 00012-2021-PI/TC (accumulated) indicates that the TC has had the opportunity to rule before on the figure of usury in Sentence 01238-2004-PA/ TC, where it was highlighted that there have been regulations that prohibited it.

He also said that “usury is synonymous with high interest, odious, disproportionate, excessive interest, in the price of money loans that the lender charges, demands or is given or promised for his money.”

The TC also considers that the challenged law “has not distorted the framework of constitutional powers conferred on the Superintendency of Banking and Insurance (SBS), among which is the control that said constitutional body must exercise over the companies of the financial system, in accordance with article 87 of the Political Constitution.

Likewise, the TC considers that the Usury Law “does not violate the autonomy and functional organization conferred on the SBS by the Constitution, the freedom and autonomy that the parties have in a relationship within the financial credit system to freely set the rates.” of interest that best suit their needs and interests”.

This also contemplates the right to freedom of contract, the free development of business activity, the principle of legal certainty and the right to property, which is why it specifies that “the institution of savings has not been endangered with the issuance of said norm”.

TC on Usury Law: the State must protect the consumer

The TC considers it essential to emphasize that due to the “social” nature of the economic regime established in the Constitution, state entities cannot remain indifferent to economic activities, which in no way implies the possibility of arbitrarily and unjustifiably interfering in the area of ​​freedom reserved for the different economic agents. (Sentence 00034-2004-PI/TC, foundation 20).

Likewise, the Collegiate highlighted that, within the framework of a Social Market Economy, unrestricted respect for economic freedoms is guaranteed, coupled with the protective role of the State in the face of market distortions; so that the economic activity carried out by individuals is accompanied by a guaranteeing regulatory framework that provides the necessary conditions for its adequate development.

“In that sense, the State and, specifically, the public powers, have the duty to protect the consumer or user of goods and services, so that the rights of those who generate the demand are protected with the same intensity with which they are respect the economic freedoms of the agents in charge of establishing the offer in the market,” says the TC.

Finally, the College urged the Congress of the Republic to form a specialized commission in charge of the exhaustive review of bills that encompass important matters – such as those of an economic nature – and that, eventually, have an impact on the society.

Source: Larepublica

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