Consumers Should Beware of Unlicensed Money Lenders

The South Dakota Department of Labor and Regulation cautions consumers about unlicensed money lenders, both online and in-person.

All lenders providing payday loans, short-term consumer loans, title loans or installment loans to South Dakota residents must be licensed by the South Dakota Division of Banking (per SDCL 54-4-52), unless specifically exempt (in SDCL 54-4-37).

State Labor and Regulation Secretary Marcia Hultman says unlicensed lenders are operating in South Dakota and consumer inquiries and complaints about them have recently spiked. She says consumers should confirm a lender is licensed by viewing the current list of licensees on the Division of Banking’s website at

Banking division director Bret Afdahl says consumers who borrow from unlicensed lenders may have limited recourse if issues arise. He says any unlicensed lenders offering loans should be reported in writing using the online consumer complaint form.