Questions & Answers
About Albuquerque Security Guard Service
We use this page to post and answer questions from apartment managers, hotel & motel managers, retail & warehouse managers, construction site supervisors and others that use Albuquerque security guards. Send in your question to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we may post it here.
Q. What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a security guard service in Albuquerque, New Mexico?
A. Before you hire a security guard service in New Mexico always insist on seeing a current copy of the security guard company's state license for security guard service, also known as a "Private Patrol Operator" license. Ask for proof of Workers Comp insurance for their guards, and proof of their current liability insurance, state law requires a minimum of $1 million. Also each guard needs a personal security guard license. Don't be afraid to ask for these, be afraid if you don't!
Q. If you were a customer, what do you wish you knew about Albuquerque security guards? Any inside secrets to share?
A. Under New Mexico state law, an individual uniformed security guard is to carry their "guard card" at all times on duty. This is an individual state license and registration for each guard. It is illegal for security companies to post a uniformed guard that has an expired license or no license. To protect yourself and your liability, ask any guard that works at your site to see their guard card. This is done to ensure the guard you hire is not worse that the people you are paying them to keep out.
Q. What can a Albuquerque security guard wear on duty?
A. Security guards in New Mexico are required to wear an official security uniform at all times when on duty, approved by the state. All security guard companies in New Mexico are required to submit a picture of their uniform to the Regulation & Licensing department for approval. It must say the word "Security" clearly on the uniform. The ID card issued by the state must be worn on the uniform and clearly visible. You can ask your security company to provide a copy of the letter from the state approving their uniform.
Q. What about the grooming appearance of Albuquerque security guards?
A. Your security presence should be professional and reassuring to your customers. Some of our clients replaced their previous companies because their guards looked worse than the people they were trying to keep out. Our Albuquerque security guard company, Pro+Plus Security, has strict personal grooming and hygiene standards, our guards are in fitted uniforms at all times, and we do not allow visible piercings or visible tattoos to show on duty.
Q. What kind of supervision should I expect from an Albuquerque security guard service?A. Your guard company should have a supervisor stop at your facility at least a few times a week while the guard is on duty to check on their service, and to provide continued training and support. If the guard is ever late, or does not show up, call the guard company right away as they may not know about it. You can also ask them to be pro-rated your rate for the hours the guard was gone. If our clients have an issue with service, we have a supervisor meet with them that day.
Q. I had a former Albuquerque security guard that worked at my facility share confidential information about my facility with a competitor, what is my recourse?
A. He broke the law, and obviously this was an untrained guard, perhaps unlicensed, and poorly supervised. According to state statute 16-48-1.8, a security guard and their employer must respect and protect the confidential and privileged information of you as a client as well as their own security guard employer, even after they leave the position. Our company has a confidentiality clause to protect our clients in our employee agreement.
Q. I am considering security cameras, why would I need an Albuquerque security guard?
A. Security cameras are a nice addition to your total security package, but it takes more than one tool to make your facility secure. Ask yourself some important questions first - Do your staff have the time give undivided attention to watch the cameras? If they see a crime, unless you already know the suspect, can the camera go catch them?
Q. Why does an Albuquerque gated community need security guards?A. Gates are great at keeping honest people out, but a crook can always get in. And often it is your own residents, staff or guests that are causing crime, especially in your parking lot, laundry room, pool, etc. The gate will not catch them, identify them, or deter determined crooks.
Q. I had a security guard posted at my facility that landed up dating one of my employees, and before that I had a guard here that was dating one of our residents? I complained to the guard manager, but did not do anything.
A. The company should have replaced or transferred the guard at your facility. That is unethical and not in accordance with the code of ethics in the state law for security guards. Our company has an employee agreement that strictly prohibits fraternization, gossip, or loitering with your employees or your customers.
Q. Can you tell me if my current security guard company or their guards are licensed?
A. We choose not to get involved in the licensing affairs of other security guard companies. You have the right to ask them for written proof of this yourself, or to contact the state licensing board to determine if they are licensed. They can be reached at (505) 476-4664.
Q. Is there a simple checklist I can use to determine if my guard company is following the law, or to use when interviewing guard companies?
A. I suggest you use the New Mexico security guard checklist found here.
Q. Should I file a complaint if I was scammed by an unlicensed security guard company In New Mexico? Can you do it for me, or how do I do it?
A. I can't tell you whether you should file a complaint or not, that is up to you. If you choose to file a complaint I cannot do it for you as it would be a conflict of interst. You would have to file the complaint on your own. Contact the
NM Private Investigations Advisory Board.
Toney Anaya Building
2550 Cerrillos Road
Santa Fe, NM 87505.
Q. I am a security guard, and my guard company tries to pay me in cash, and often does not pay me on payday. What can I do?
A. I am really sorry to hear about this Some security guard companies do pay cash on payday, but it is illegal. It is also illegal to pay an employee late, bounce a paycheck, or ask the employee to hold off on cashing it. Another problem is where security guard companies withhold FICA, Social Security, Medicare, and taxes but then do not turn around and pay into it on the employees behalf. Later if that employee needs social security, unemployment etc, it is not there for them. You can get more information, including how to report them here . The New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions investigates cases of employers not paying their employees on time, paying them late, or not paying hours that are due. Be sure to let them know if this happens to you. They even have the power to place a lien on a company that does this.
Q.Why do you care that another company is not licensed, registered or does not follow the rules?
A.A security guard company that does not follow the rules destroys the entire profession, they make everyone look bad. It is unfair in pricing bids for customers and us, as we get undercut by a scam artist. We comply with the security guard law at considerable expense, and then hear potential clients say they hired the "fly by night security" company because they were cheaper? Here is how they are cheaper.
If they don't have a license, they save hundreds of dollars. If they hire unlicensed guards, they save money. If they do not pay FICA, Social Security, Medicare, payroll tax, etc saving themselves about 11%. Workers Comp insurance costs about another 14% in trying to offer a client an hourly rate. If they do not pay for the required liability insurance they save another couple of thousand dollars a year. It all adds up to undercutting the legitimate companies. The real question is, who wants the liability of admitting you hired a company like that if something happens, and you never checked them out. Remember, you get what you pay for.
Q. How do I find out if they have required Workers Comp insurance?
A. You can ask for written proof.
A. Because it is illegal, a misdemeanor for you to work as a guard without a license. Part of the security guard state law specifically says under 126.96.36.199 PRACTICING WITHOUT A LICENSE, it is unlawful for an individual to act as a security guard or to make any representation as being licensee or registrant unless the individual is licensed by the department.
We will not hire anyone for uniformed security guard work that is not licensed. We have too much respect for the real security guards, and our clients. It brings great pride to the guards that work for us, real professionals, with a license they can use on their resume for the rest of their lives. A license makes the job more accountable, it shows that the guard and the company take their responsibilities seriously. It means that they have been trained to state standards and have subjected themselves to rigorous background checks and other screening, at their own expense. They have gone the extra mile to show they are a pro, and frankly any company that does not use licensed guards is breaking the law and bringing down the profession for everyone.
Q. I manage a nightclub in Albuquerque, and we have had legal trouble over the actions of some of our bouncers, who have been overenthusiastic with removing guests that have create problems. What do I need to consider if I replace bouncers with security guards?
A. Uniformed guards in bars are very common in other states, including some of our own clients in Arizona, but New Mexico has not moved that way yet for some reason. I personally think bouncers are a bad idea, they may be untrained and usually not properly insured, and can get out of hand in dealing with difficult customers. There have been cases where they beat a customer to death. If you use uniformed guards, be sure to get written proof that they are individually licensed and trained by the state, and that the company has a PPO license. Also check on their liability insurance, state law requires $1 million minimum for guard companies. The same alcohol server laws that affect your employees affect the security guard, even if they are on contract.
Licensed security guards who check the ID's of customers to ensure they are 21 years old, OR who provide security in an event where alcohol is being served, must obtain an additional “NM Alcohol Server Permit”. The class for that permit is 4.5 hours long, at about $30, and the permit is valid for five (5) years. Also, according to the security guard law for the state of New Mexico, any uniformed registrant or licensee shall not consume alcoholic beverages or controlled substances while on duty. I hope this helps.
Q. I have a national security guard company working the apartment building I manage. They never check on their guards, no supervision, the guards don't do anything if they saw a crime right under their nose, and they look like heck. The guard admitted to me he has never been trained. After many calls to the guard company office with no results, I told them I planned to fire their company. They actually threatened me, stating that I had to keep him on another 8 months according to our contract, and said he would sue me if I let them go. What can I do?
A. This is hard to answer without seeing what your contract actually says, and you may consider seeking some legal help. If the company has contracted to provide a service that they are now failing to provide, you may determine whether you have a breach of contract that is strong enough to get the contract nullified. This does not happen with our company, as we have a 30 day clause to let you out of the contract if you are not satisfied.
Thank you to all the managers of hotel, motels, retail stores, office building supervisors, landlords and apartment managers, nightclub managers, warehouse and construction site supervisors that have sent questions in.
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