2006 New Mexico Statutes - Section 58-15-5 — Licenses; investigation of application; issuance; denial; issuance of renewal license; denial of renewal license; fitness and character of applicant; license fees; licensee bound by act.

58-15-5. Licenses; investigation of application; issuance; denial; issuance of renewal license; denial of renewal license; fitness and character of applicant; license fees; licensee bound by act.

A.     Upon the filing of an application, whether it is an original or a renewal, the director shall investigate the facts concerning the application and the requirements provided in this section.   

Any applicant for license, upon written notice to do so by the director, shall within twenty days after service of the notice furnish in writing, under oath, to the director any and all additional information required by the director that may be relevant or, in the opinion of the director, helpful to him in conducting his investigation.   

Failure to comply with the director's requirement for supplemental information or the willful furnishing of false information is sufficient ground for denial of license.   

False or misleading information willfully and intentionally furnished to the director prior to the issuance of any license is ground for suspension or revocation of any license in accordance with the procedures for suspension or revocation of license in the New Mexico Small Loan Act of 1955 [this article].   

The director shall grant or deny each application for an original license within sixty days from the filing of the application with the required information and fees, unless the period is extended by written agreement between the applicant and the director.   

B.     In the event the director finds:   

(1)     that the financial responsibility, character and general fitness of the applicant for an original license and of the individual members and beneficiaries thereof, if the applicant is a copartnership, association or trust, and of the officers and directors thereof, if the applicant is a corporation, are such as to command the confidence of the public and to warrant belief that the business will be operated lawfully, honestly, fairly and efficiently within the declared purposes and spirit of the New Mexico Small Loan Act of 1955;   

(2)     that allowing the applicant to engage in business will promote the convenience and advantage of the community in which the business of the applicant is to be conducted; and   

(3)     that the applicant has available for operation of the business at the specified location cash or its equivalent, convertible securities or receivables of thirty thousand dollars ($30,000) or any combination thereof;   

he shall enter an order granting the application, file his findings and, upon payment of the license fee of five hundred dollars ($500), issue and deliver a license to the applicant.   

C.     If the director does not make the findings enumerated in Subsection B of this section, he shall enter an order denying the application, notify the applicant of the denial and retain the application fee. Within thirty days after the entry of such an order, he shall prepare written findings and shall deliver a copy to the applicant.   

D.     Written application for renewal licenses shall be filed on or before March 31 of each year, and thereupon the director shall investigate the facts and review his files of examinations of the applicant made by his office and of complaints filed by borrowers, if any.  If he finds:   

(1)     that no valid complaints of violations or abuses of the New Mexico Small Loan Act of 1955 or of the regulations of the director promulgated under that act have been filed by borrowers;   

(2)     that his examinations of the affairs of the applicant indicate that the business has been conducted and operated lawfully and efficiently within the declared purposes and spirit of the New Mexico Small Loan Act of 1955; and   

(3)     that the financial responsibility, experience and general fitness and character of the applicant remain such as to command the confidence of the public and to warrant the belief that the business will continue to be operated lawfully and efficiently within the purposes and spirit of the New Mexico Small Loan Act of 1955;   

he shall deliver a renewal license to the applicant.   

E.     If the director does not make the findings enumerated in Subsection D of this section, he may grant a temporary extension of the license not exceeding sixty days pending a hearing; shall enter an order fixing a date for hearing upon the application; shall notify the licensee thereof, specifying the particular complaints, violations or abuses or other reasons for his contemplated refusal to renew the license; and shall afford to the applicant an opportunity to be heard.  At the hearing, the director shall produce his evidence to establish the truth of the charges of violation or other grounds specified in the notice, and the applicant shall be accorded the right to produce evidence or other matters of defense.  If after the hearing the director finds that the complaints of violations or other grounds specified in the notice are not well founded, he shall issue the renewal license.  If he finds that the complaints of violations or other grounds are well founded, he shall enter an order denying the renewal application and notify the applicant of the denial, returning the renewal license fee tendered with the application. Within thirty days after the entry of such an order, he shall prepare written findings and shall deliver a copy of the findings to the applicant.  The order shall be subject to review as provided in Section 58-15-25 NMSA 1978. The court in its discretion and upon proper showing may order a temporary extension of the license pending disposition of the review proceedings.   

F.     In connection with the determination of fitness and character of an applicant under this section, the fact that the applicant or licensee is a member of or interested financially in, connected or affiliated with, controls or is controlled by or owns or is owned by other corporations, partnerships, trusts, associations or other legal entities engaged in the lending of money whose policies and practices as to rates of interest, charges and fees and general dealing with borrowers are questionable or would constitute violation of the general usury statutes of this state or of the declared purposes and spirit of the New Mexico Small Loan Act of 1955 shall be given such consideration and weight as the director determines.   

G.     At the time of issuance of original license and each annual renewal thereof, the licensee for each licensed office shall pay to the director as a license fee for the period covered by the license the sum of five hundred dollars ($500) as a minimum, plus an additional seventy-five cents ($.75) for each one thousand dollars ($1,000) or fraction thereof of loans outstanding as of December 31 next preceding, as shown on the applicant's annual report.  In the event that the application for annual renewal of the license is delinquent, the licensee shall also pay a delinquency fee of ten dollars ($10.00) per day for each day the licensee is delinquent in filing the application for renewal.   

H.     Each licensee by accepting any license that is issued or renewed or by continuing to operate any licensed office under the New Mexico Small Loan Act of 1955 shall by such action be deemed to have consented to be bound by the lawful provisions of that act and all lawful requirements, regulations and orders of the director promulgated or issued pursuant to any authorization granted in that act.   

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