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How to Identify a Fraudulent Debt Management Company

David Humphreys May 23, 2024

Dealing with debt can be an overwhelming and stressful experience. When you're searching for solutions, it's essential to be aware of fraudulent debt management companies that prey on vulnerable consumers. Unfortunately, these scams are all too common, especially in New Mexico. It’s crucial to understand that in New Mexico, debt settlement or any agreement with a consumer to adjust the terms of their personal debt is illegal. Here's how to identify and avoid these fraudulent companies.

Understanding the Legal Landscape in New Mexico

First and foremost, it's important to know that New Mexico has stringent laws regarding debt management. Debt settlement services, which often involve negotiating with creditors to reduce the amount owed, are prohibited. This means any company offering to settle your debts or adjust the terms of your debt is not operating legally in New Mexico. Being aware of this legal framework is your first line of defense against scams.

Red Flags of Fraudulent Debt Management Companies

1. Upfront Fees

Legitimate debt management companies do not ask for substantial upfront fees. If a company requests payment before providing any services, it's a significant red flag. According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), it's illegal for debt settlement companies to charge you before they settle or reduce your debt.

2. Promises of Quick Fixes

Be wary of companies that promise to quickly fix your debt problems or offer guaranteed results. Debt management is a complex process that requires time and careful planning. No reputable company can guarantee specific results, especially within a short period.

3. Pressure Tactics

Fraudulent companies often use high-pressure sales tactics to push you into making quick decisions. They may urge you to sign up immediately to avoid "missing out" on their services.

4. Unrealistic Promises

Promises to eliminate your debt entirely or reduce it by a significant percentage are almost always false. Be skeptical of any company making grandiose claims.

What To Do if You Are Trapped in Debt Settlement

1. Consult with a Consumer Protection Attorney

Before engaging with any debt management company, consult with a consumer protection attorney. If you are in a contract with a debt management company, contact our firm for a consultation. We can provide legal advice tailored to your specific situation and help you navigate the complex landscape of debt management laws in New Mexico.

2. Explore Legal Alternatives

Consider legal alternatives to debt settlement. Credit counseling services, bankruptcy, and debt consolidation are options that may be more appropriate and legal in New Mexico. Our firm can guide you through these alternatives and help you choose the best course of action.


By staying informed, recognizing the red flags, and seeking professional advice, you can safeguard your financial well-being and find legitimate ways to manage your debt.

Remember, no matter how dire your financial situation may seem, there are legal and effective ways to manage your debt. Stay vigilant and informed to avoid falling victim to scams. If you find yourself in a debt management contract, contact our firm for a consultation. Mention debt settlement in your contact form.