Are You a Legal Professional?

Florida Lemon Laws

Getting a new (or even just new to you) car can be an exciting prospect. But what can you do if your new car is running like an old car? Fortunately, Florida, like most states, has laws in place that may protect you if your new auto purchase refuses to run right. This is a quick introduction to “lemon laws” in Florida.

State Lemon Laws

A "lemon" is a car with either a major defect or a series of recurring problems that the dealer or other mechanics are unable to remedy. Lemon laws were enacted to give consumers more peace of mind when purchasing new car. They also help prevent and discourage dealers from unscrupulous practices that would otherwise leave car buyers in the lurch. In short, Florida lemon laws provide a way for consumers to get an acceptable replacement vehicle or a repurchase of the lemon and a full refund to the consumer.  

Lemon Laws in Florida

The following table highlights the main provisions of Florida's lemon law (Motor Vehicle Warranty Enforcement Act).

Code Section

681.10, et seq.

Title of Act

Motor Vehicle Warranty Enforcement Act

Definition of Defects

Nonconformity to warranties which significantly impair the use, value, or safety of motor vehicle

Time Limit for Manufacturer Repair

24 months

Remedies

Consumer's unconditional option: Replace with vehicle acceptable to consumer or repurchase vehicle and refund to consumer full purchase price, including all reasonably incurred collateral and incidental charges, less reasonable offset for use

While state lemon laws can vary depending on jurisdictions, there are generally three keys to determining if your new car qualifies for lemon law protection:

  • You car must have a substantial defect that becomes apparent within a certain time limit after your purchase;
  • The defect must be covered under your warranty; and
  • The defect must continue to occur, even after a reasonable number of repair attempts.

If you are in the market for an automobile, you should know that most lemon laws only cover new vehicle leases and purchases. Florida law is no different, covering only new or demonstrator vehicles sold in Florida, and only for defects discovered in the first 24 months of ownership.

Related Resources for Lemon Laws

Finding out you’ve got a lemon on your hands and dealing with it can be tough. If you would like to do your own legal research, you can start with FindLaw's lemon law section for more introductory articles and resources. You might also want to consult with a Florida lemon law attorney in your area about your particular case.

Next Step Search and Browse
Contact a qualified attorney.
(e.g., Chicago, IL or 60611)