Buying a new car is exciting, but that happiness turns into anxiety when it works improperly. Like many other states, Florida has laws to protect the rights when newly bought cars are worn out; one of them is known as the Florida Lemon Law.
What is Florida Lemon Law?
Florida Lemon Law helps individuals protect their rights when they lease or buy any new vehicle that turns out to be defective.
Florida Lemon Law protects consumers if the new car has defects in working or usability that affect how safe it is and how it works.
Contact manufacturer with written notices about the series of faults in between 2 years. If they fail to resolve the issues after enough tries, the company or manufacturer is responsible for claiming the vehicle or returning the purchase price.
If the defects or conditions have occurred because of artificial changes, modifications, damages, or any accident, the Florida Lemon Law never fits here to help the people with such cases.
Important Note: Never delay in reporting the defects to the manufacturer. The sooner possible, the better.
How To Lemon Law A Car In Florida?
Vehicle consumers must maintain the records of all the repairs and maintenance. Receive the complete repair details after each service or warranty work from the service center.
With the odometer reading, include the dates of dropping off the vehicle and receiving it back after repair in the repair details documents. Also, keep all invoices and payment receipts for leasing the car, buying, and repairing.
If the defective vehicle has been returned to the repair shop three times for the same issue, write a letter to the manufacturing company (not the dealer) where the vehicle was manufactured.
Send this letter using the registered or express mail to let the company resolve the issue for the last time. The company’s address will be written in the warranty book, manual, or any other official documents from the company.
Click on the link and use the form “Motor Vehicle Defect Notification” per instructions.
After receiving the letter, the company will be responsible for having your defective vehicle within ten days, and they will have ten days after getting the car at their location to fix it for the final time.
However, if the vehicle has defects or issues that require it to be in for repairs for 30 days or more, the buyer will automatically become eligible to receive a refund or a replacement car for the same price.
In case the manufacturer company fails to fix the defects after a reasonable number of attempts and they don’t replace the vehicle or refund the buying price, the arbitration process will resolve the dispute.
The arbitration process is the third-party function that helps to make an ultimate decision. In rare cases, the buyer will need to go through two times arbitration programs, but mostly, it is done in only one arbitration, but all of that depends on the situation.
Ensure that if there is any process within the manufacturer’s company policy to help buyers resolve the dispute of a defective vehicle, either refund the total price or replace the car, go through with that one, but make sure the State of Florida approves that process. It will be workable only when you have the company’s warranty or official statement they provided you on how to use that process.
To find a list of manufacturers having state-approved arbitration processes, click here.
Also, the buyers can call the Lemon Law Hotline at 1-800-321-5366 (or 850-414-3500 for outsiders of Florida) to confirm the manufacturer’s state-approved arbitration process.
Never mix the concept of “state-certified” as it means that the manufacturer’s process to resolve issues meets the standards of specified rules of the country or state. It never means that the state controls or runs that particular arbitration program.
However, in case of no state-approved process, if the approved program does not respond within 40 days, or if the answer from the manufacturer’s company’s arbitration process is not satisfactory, go for the Florida New Motor Vehicle Arbitration Board. The board is to help the issues and resolve them immediately.
The authority in the Attorney General’s Lemon Law Arbitration Division will go through your case in detail if you are eligible for the board’s involvement to help resolve the dispute.
Florida Lemon Law Attorney
All states have lemon laws, but each state is a bit different. These differences change things like when you can complain, what kind of vehicles and issues are included, and the steps the buyer needs to take for a valid complaint.
It is essential to consult a lemon law attorney in Florida who knows about the Florida state’s rules and policies and the specific but relevant problems of the individuals. In this way, the individuals with issues will have proper advice to make the right decision.
Read here some vital information about lemon law in Florida.
Florida Lemon Law Time Limits
The manufacturer gets limited repair attempts. After 3 attempts for the same issue, notify them and wait ten days (45 for RVs) for a fix. If the vehicle is down for 15+ days, inform them of one inspection/repair chance. Use the Lemon Law in Florida if it’s out for 30+ days (60 for RVs) with notice and one opportunity.
Owners of the vehicles will have 60 days extra to start the process after 24 months of ownership. Go to Florida Lemon Law Attorneys for specific advice.
Choose replacement or refund, and it must be similar. Refund adjusted for use. Settlements can go beyond these options, like ‘cash and keep.’
Manufacturers cover the legal costs that law requires. Lemon Law in all states ensure this. If the owner wins, the company pays the lawyer fees. It helps as it protects the owners from the expenses when taking on big automakers.
Federal Laws for Warranty
Federal warranties protect buyers from lemons. For example, the Magnuson Moss Warranty Act secures products with warranties and gives detailed info to buyers.
The Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC’s) Used Car Rule drives dealers to put a Buyer’s Guide on every used car. It shows if there’s a warranty and details. Dealers must also inform about body/frame damage before selling to keep cars safe and valuable. Breaking the Rule can lead to penalties.
Magnuson Moss Warranty Act
The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act is a law that makes sure companies selling products with warranties must give specific info to consumers. It also says dealers must inform buyers about significant damage to a used car’s body or frame before selling.
This law began in 1975 to stop unfair warranty practices. The Federal Trade Commission enforces it, covering items like cars, trucks, boats, RVs, ATVs, SUVs, and motorcycles with a written warranty.