Lemon Law for Recreational Vehicles
NOTICE: The information below was obtained directly from Florida Statutes and the website of the Florida Office of the Attorney General. This law is enforced by Florida’s Attorney General. Links are provided so you may access the statute and the website.
Recreational Vehicle Dealers must supply purchasers of new or demonstrator RVs with:
- A “Consumer Guide to the Florida Lemon Law”
- Information on how and where to file a claim with the RV Mediation/Arbitration Program (These documents are produced by the manufacturer and provided to the customer by the dealer.)
- Dealers must obtain the signature of the customer acknowledging receipt of the consumer guide. This form must be kept by the dealer for three (3) years.
Parts or components of RVs NOT COVERED under Florida’s Lemon Law include “living facilities” which are defined as portions of the vehicle designed, used or maintained primarily as living quarters, such as the flooring, plumbing system and fixtures, roof air conditioner, furnace, generator, electrical systems other than automotive circuits, the side entrance door, exterior components and windows other than the windshield and driver and front passenger windows. This is not a complete list.
- Service agents that perform any examination or repair under the manufacturer’s warranty must provide the consumer with a written, legible repair order each time the vehicle is brought to the shop. According to a representative of the Attorney General’s Office, the written repair order must be fully itemized, it must include test drive mileage, the diagnosis made, the work performed, a general description of the problem or defect, and the parts and labors, along with dates, must be identified. If any labor was performed by a subcontractor, that must be documented.
- Dealers cannot refuse to give consumers written repair orders. Both dealer and customer must complete the retail disclosure form.
The following appears on the Attorney General’s website:
Purchasers of new or demonstrator recreation vehicles (not van or truck conversions) should be provided with the “Consumer Guide to the Florida Lemon Law” by their selling dealer at the time of purchase. The Consumer Guide contains a section that explains Lemon Law coverage for recreation vehicles. If you did not receive a Consumer Guide when you purchased your vehicle, call the Lemon Law Hotline at 1-800-321-5366 (1-850-414-3500 if outside Florida) to request a Guide. Recreation vehicle manufacturers are also required to inform consumers how and where to file a claim with the RV Mediation/Arbitration Program. This information must be provided in writing at the time of acquisition of the recreation vehicle.
Certain parts or components of recreation vehicles are NOT COVERED under Florida’s Lemon Law. These are referred to in the law as the “living facilities,” which are defined as portions of the vehicle designed, used or maintained primarily as living quarters, such as the flooring, plumbing system and fixtures, roof air conditioner, furnace, generator, electrical systems other than automotive circuits, the side entrance door, exterior components and windows other than the windshield and driver and front passenger windows. This is not a complete list.
The Lemon Law rights period for recreation vehicles is 24 months from the date of delivery, just like for other motor vehicles; however, other time periods are different and consumers should read the Consumer Guide for more information.
- IMPORTANT: Recreation vehicles are often made and assembled by more than one manufacturer, each of which may separately warrant its product. RV Consumers should receive all applicable warranties from the selling dealer at the time of purchase and these documents should be kept in a place of ready reference at all times. Repair of defective components should be sought from the service agent who is authorized to perform the repair by the manufacturer that warrants the component. Consult the warranty and/or owner’s manual of the manufacturer(s) whose component(s) are believed to be defective to find out where to take the RV for repair. Service agents that perform any examination or repair under the manufacturer’s warranty must provide the consumer with a written, legible repair order each time the vehicle is brought to the shop. Keep records of all repairs and required maintenance, and the mileage associated with warranty repairs.
If the recreation vehicle has been subjected to at least three repair attempts for the same defect that is not a defective living facility component, or has been out of service for repair of one or more defects that are not defective living facility components for 15 or more days, then, written notification must be sent to eachmanufacturer (not the dealer) which may provide warranty coverage of the defects. If the consumer is not certain which manufacturer’s warranty covers the complaint, it is better to send the notification to all potentially responsible manufacturers. The Motor Vehicle Defect Notification form may be used for this purpose or you may send a letter. The notification must be sent by registered or express mail. Click here for the Instructions and Motor Vehicle Defect Notification form. Please refer to the section about Recreation Vehicles in the “Consumer Guide to the Florida Lemon Law” for further information about notification, manufacturer response and time requirements, as these provisions are different for recreation vehicles.
Recreation vehicle consumers who wish to pursue the remedies available under Florida’s Lemon Law, are required to submit their disputes to an industry-sponsored mediation/arbitration program that has been qualified by the Department of Legal Affairs. If there is not a qualified program, or if a program’s qualification has been revoked, then, recreation vehicle consumers who wish to pursue the remedies available under Florida’s Lemon Law must submit their disputes to the Department of Legal Affairs for arbitration by the Florida New Motor Vehicle Arbitration Board.
The claim must be filed with the Department of Legal Affairs within 60 days after the expiration of the Lemon Law rights period, which is 24 months from the date of delivery of the vehicle to the consumer. DO NOT DELAY! RV consumers are NOT required to submit to any other manufacturer-sponsored program.
Recreation vehicle consumers wishing to pursue the remedies available under Florida’s Lemon Law should call the Department of Legal Affairs, Lemon Law Arbitration Division at 850-414-3500 for information regarding how to file a claim and to obtain a claim form.