H. B. 4089
(By Delegates Thompson, Dempsey, Seacrist,
Hunt, Clements and Faircloth)
[Introduced January 17, 1996; referred to the
Committee on the Judiciary.]
A BILL to amend and reenact sections ten and eleven, article six,
chapter forty-seven of the code of West Virginia, one
thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, relating to
the exemption from the defense of usury.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That sections ten and eleven, article six, chapter
forty-seven of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine
hundred thirty-one, as amended, be amended and reenacted to read
ARTICLE 6. MONEY AND INTEREST.
§47-6-10. Corporations, partnerships, and limited
partnerships not entitled to defense of usury.
No corporation, partnership,
or limited partnership or
limited liability company may interpose the defense of usury in
any civil action, nor may any bond, note, debt, or contract of a
corporation, partnership, or limited partnership or limited liability company be set aside, impaired, or adjudged invalid by
reason of anything contained in the laws prohibiting usury.
§47-6-11. Certain business debts exempt from usury laws.
No law limiting interest rates or providing for forfeiture,
penalty, or other loss or liability because of the rate of
interest charged may be applied:
(1) To any debt that is incurred by a loan, installment
sale, or other similar transaction, and is incurred primarily for
a business purpose; or
(2) To any addition to or refinancing, in whole or in part,
of a debt meeting the requirements of subdivision (1) of this
section, providing such addition or refinancing is also primarily
for a business purpose.
Provided , That if the debt described in
subdivision (1) of this section is incurred by a natural person,
the provisions of this section shall not apply unless such debt
is in a principal amount of twenty thousand dollars or more.
For the purpose of determining the applicability of this
section, the term "business" means and includes any activity that
is engaged in primarily for the purpose of generating "gross
income," as that term is defined in section one, article
thirteen, chapter eleven of this code: Provided, That "business"
does not mean or include farming or any other agricultural
activity engaged in by a producer of agricultural commodities,
livestock, or other farm products.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to add an additional type
of business entity, the limited liability company, to the other
identified entities which are not entitled to assert the defense
of usury. In addition, the bill provides that usury or interest
rate limitations will not apply to all business purpose loans as
incurred by a natural person, which includes sole
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken
from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language
that would be added.