News & Events

February 25, 2020
Anthony Home Saved From Predatory Lender

Carmen Carbajal and her late husband Rafael bought a parcel of land and a mobile home in Anthony, New Mexico nearly thirty years ago where they raised their four children. Both were immigrants from Mexico and had only an elementary-school education. After Rafael passed away, Carmen continued to live in the home with three adult children and five grandchildren.

Carmen Carbajal at her home in Anthony

Carmen at her home in Anthony, NM. 

In 2017 Carmen was sued by property investors Bob and Tina Bradshaw of Las Cruces, claiming that she and Rafael had gotten a mortgage loan from them in 2011 and had defaulted on the loan payments. The Bradshaws sought to foreclose on the property to pay off the debt.

Carmen, who did not realize there was any debt owed or a mortgage - she didn't recall signing either document and doesn't speak or read English - contacted New Mexico Legal Aid for help. 

New Mexico Legal Aid took her case and filed counterclaims against the Bradshaws for unlicensed mortgage lending and violations of the New Mexico Home Loan Protection Act and the Unfair Practices Act. After a year-and-a-half of litigation, the case settled for a confidential amount, waiver of the remaining debt, and a release of the mortgage.

Carmen walks with her grandson outside their home.