The State of New Jersey
NJ Department of Banking and Insurance

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Frequently Asked Questions - Debt Adjuster
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1. What activity constitutes debt adjusting so as to require licensure?

Debt adjusting in New Jersey is defined as either acting for consideration as an intermediary between a debtor and his creditors for the purpose of settling, compounding, or otherwise altering the terms of payment of any debts of the debtor, or who, to that end, receives money or other property from the debtor, or on behalf of the debtor, for payment to, or distribution among, the creditors of the debtor. 

2. Can any person, corporation, or other business entity qualify to be licensed as a debt adjuster?
No, only a nonprofit corporation can be licensed as a debt adjuster.

3. If my organization is a HUD-approved Housing Counselor or a U.S. Bankruptcy Trustee-approved credit counselor, or is approved or certified by any other governmental agency or official, does it still require licensure to act as a debt adjuster for New Jersey clients? 

4. Are there any exemptions to the licensure requirement:
Yes.  Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 17:16G-1(c)(2) the following persons shall not be deemed to be debt adjusters:     

(a)   an attorney-at-law of this State who is not principally engaged as a debt adjuster;
(b)   a person who is a regular, full-time employee of a debtor, and who acts as an adjuster of his employer’s debts;
(c)   a person acting pursuant to any order or judgment of court, or pursuant to authority conferred by any law of this State or the United States;
(d)   a person who is a creditor of the debtor, or an agent of one or more creditors of the debtor, and whose services in adjusting the debtor’s debts are rendered without cost to the debtor; or
(e)   a person who, at the request of a debtor, arranges for or makes a loan to the debtor, and who, at the authorization of the debtor, acts as an adjuster of the compensation for the services rendered in adjusting those debts.

5. How long does it take to process an application?
A properly completed application will generally be processed within 30 days of receipt of all required information.

6. What is required to obtain the license?
All information as to how to apply for a license is contained in the instructions.

7. When does the license expire?
All licenses that are initially issued anytime between July 1, 2017 and June 30, 2019 will expire on June 30, 2019.  Thereafter, all licenses will be subject to renewal for a 2-year term beginning on July 1 of an odd year and expiring on June 30 of the following odd year, i.e. July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2021.

8. When do I file the annual report?
All annual reports are due by May 1. They can be filed online.

9. How can I read and/or get a copy of the statutes and rules governing this license?
The statute, N.J.S.A. 17:16G-1 et seq., is accessible on the internet at and the rules, N.J.A.C. 3:25, may be accessed at
See Frequently Requested Documents, which lists the cost of copies of the statutes and send remittance with request to the address provided.

10. Can I pay the application fee by credit card?
Currently, credit card payments are not permissible.

11. What if my application is withdrawn or denied?
fees paid are non-refundable.

12. What is the procedure if I change my address?
Complete the Request for Change of Legal Name or Address form found on our web site.

13. What is the procedure if I change the business name or add an alternate name?
Complete the Request for Change of Legal Name or Address form found on our website.  Enclose a copy of the amended Certificate of Incorporation, if a corporation; a copy of the amended Certificate of Formation, if a limited liability company; a copy of the amended or new trade name certificate, if a partnership or sole proprietorship; a copy of the amended Certificate of Authority to do business in New Jersey, if a foreign corporation; a copy of the Registration of Alternate Name, if adding a “doing business as” name.

14. What must I do if my license is lost or destroyed?
Please e-mail to request a license reprint.

15. How do I renew my license?
Renewal instructions will be sent to you on or before April 1 of the year in which your license expires.

16. What must I do if I go out of business?
Please contact requesting information about the surrender procedure.

17. Is the license transferrable?
No.  A license may not be transferred from one entity to another.

18. How can I contact DOBI if I have a question that was not answered above?
You can put your question in writing and fax it to the Department at (609) 633-0822 or send it by e-mail to

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New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance