Attorney general filing lawsuit against NM Solar Group
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – New Mexico Attorney General Raúl Torrez is suing the local solar company, New Mexico Solar Group.
This comes after many New Mexicans have filed complaints after the company shutdown without warning, leaving many of them in the dark.
Customers like Nancy Griego. She and her husband put down almost $10,000 on solar panels through the company but never got them installed.
“We don’t have the resources to pull more money out and start over with another company,” said Nancy Griego.
The only notice Griego says she got was an email from New Mexico Solar Group, saying the company was closing because of interest rates and other financial issues.
She and dozens of other customers filed complaints with Torrez.
“Most concerning from our standpoint, is they actually had a number of customers who were in the process, they’d already paid money, they were waiting for an installation to be completed or hookups to be done. And all of those consumers now we’re sort of left holding the bag,” said Torrez.
Now, Torrez is going after New Mexico Solar Group. His office recently filed a lawsuit against the company.
“We’ve taken a pretty aggressive approach, because I think it’s incredibly important in New Mexico. This is a state that has abundant natural resources, we’ve got a lot of, I think, an ability to be at the forefront of the solar installation business,” Torrez said.
The lawsuit says New Mexico Solar Group violates the Unfair Practices Act. Adding the company knew it may shut down, but continued to sell solar panels anyway.
It also says customers were lied to about installation timelines and made to pay 50% upfront, and employees weren’t able to contact customers about the shutdown.
Torrez says his office is evaluating the company’s financial state.
“I want to be cautious about getting consumers hopes up that they’ll be able to recover those funds. What I can tell you is that we will do everything in our power to try and help them, to try to protect them, and to try and recover whatever money we can,” said Torrez.
He did acknowledge that there needs to be more regulation of these types of industries.
“One of the things that we’ll be looking forward to in the upcoming legislative session is working with the New Mexico Legislature on figuring out what is the best framework, not just in the solar industry, but in all the industries where we have so many consumers that are impacted by these practices,” said Torrez.
Torrez says his office is also now investigating two other solar companies: Meraki Solar and Titan Solar. It’s not clear yet if lawsuits will be filed against them yet.
But, if you’re a New Mexico Solar Group Customer, Torrez urges you to file a complaint.