Because of the frequent occurrence of irreparable defects in vehicles throughout the nation, every state in the U.S. has some form of lemon law to protect consumers and hold manufacturers accountable for their products. In Florida, although the lemon law is similar to other states, there are some important differences.
Under the Florida lemon law, when a new vehicle undergoes three repair attempts for the same nonconformity, the owner of the vehicle can notify the manufacturer that they have a final chance to fix the problem before the car is declared a lemon. When notification is received, the manufacturer has ten days to offer a repair. If they do not, they lose their chance. Also, when the vehicle is out of service for a cumulative 15 days due to the same nonconformity, the consumer can contact the manufacturer to repair the vehicle. When it has been out of service for 30 days, it can qualify as a lemon.
When the vehicle cannot be fixed, the manufacturer has 40 days to refund the consumer’s money or offer a replacement vehicle. It is up to the consumer to decide what he or she wants (money versus replacement vehicle).
Under Florida law, there are different lemon law rules for recreational vehicles, defined as vehicles designed to provide temporary living quarters during camping, travel, or other recreation. When a manufacturer is notified that they have one more chance to fix a recreational vehicle that may be a lemon, they have 45 days to respond and offer a repair. Additionally, a recreational vehicle must be out of service for 60 days rather than 30 for the same defect to qualify as a lemon.
It’s important for consumers to understand their rights under their state’s lemon law and what they have to do to obtain a replacement or refund for their vehicle. If you or a loved one is searching for help with your lemon, Howard D. Silver, Los Angeles new car lemon law attorney, can aid you during this difficult and confusing time. For more information, call our offices today at (866) 49-LEMON.