Florida Lemon Law Summary Consumer Guide
- Eligibility: 3 unsuccessful repairs or 15 calendar days within 24 months from delivery.
- Resolution Attempt: Written notice by certified or express mail to manufacturer who has 10 calendar days for final repair attempt after delivery to designated dealer.
- State has certified guidelines for arbitration. State-run arbitration mechanism available. Law specifically applies to leased vehicles.
You knew about Florida oranges, but what about Florida lemons? Not exactly what you were expecting to get in the Sunshine State. You may not be aware of your rights as a consumer, however, and the state of Florida has an entire statute dedicated to protecting purchasers from being stuck with a car that is continually having problems.
Seth, an advisor who works with the Attorney General’s Lemon Law Arbitration program, told me about the couple things that must occur for Florida to recognize a lemon law case.
“Well, it has to be purchased or leased new in Florida,” he stated. “They must first report the problem to the manufacturer or their authorized service agent within the first 24 months of purchase.”
He explained how the state of Florida needs to have a purchase agreement, all of the peril orders, and payment history involved with the lemon claim as proof. Although it covers new and leased vehicles, the statute does not apply to motor cycles or used cars.
Seth explained that while some may choose legal counsel to pursue the claim, the Florida lemon law makes it possible for individuals to win the case without help.
“Our process is definitely designed where they can do it on their own,” he said. “We have a short list of names if a consumer asks that we can say we know these lawyers handle lemon law cases.”
You could benefit greatly by taking your case to court. Seth explains what options of justice are available to the consumer should he or she win.
“Consumers have two choices if they win their case,” he clarified. “They can get a refund or a replacement vehicle. The replacement vehicle should be within 105% of the MSRP of the vehicle you are turning in.”
If you believe you have purchased a lemon, and would like more information on where to go from here, you can contact the Attorney General’s office at (850) 414-3990.