Florida Laws Regarding Canceling an Auto Lease in Three Days

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The Florida lemon law applies to new and leased vehicles.
The Florida lemon law applies to new and leased vehicles. (Image: NA/AbleStock.com/Getty Images)

In Florida, there is no grace period when it comes to your auto lease, which is a binding contract. The three-day Florida law applies to gym or health spa memberships, and home- or phone-solicitation purchases under $25. If you want to cancel your auto lease at any time, however, you may seek cancellation through Florida's lemon law.

Eligibility

The Florida lemon law allows consumers to return a leased vehicle if there are manufacturer defects that both the dealer and original manufacturer could not fix on multiple attempts. Under the law, only new and leased vehicles less than two years old are eligible, and the defect must impair the safety, use or value of the vehicle. Once the buyer discovers the defect, he must give the dealer three chances to fix the problem. The lemon law covers manufacturer defects that fall under the warranty but not defects caused by neglect, modification or accidents.

Notice

If you suspect that your leased vehicle is a lemon, you must request that the dealer send the vehicle to the original manufacturer. You must write your request using a Motor Vehicle Defect Notification form and send it via certified mail. You can download a copy of the Motor Vehicle Defect Notification form at the Office of the Attorney General of Florida. Once the dealer receives this form, they have 10 days to fix the problem.

Arbitration

If both the dealer and manufacturer cannot fix your leased vehicle's defect, your next step is to participate in the manufacturer's state-certified arbitration hearing. If the manufacturer does not have a state-certified arbitration hearing, you must take your case to the Florida New Motor Vehicle Arbitration Board, a panel of three arbitrators that will hear your case and provide a final verdict. For a list of all manufacturers that provide a state-certified hearing, visit the Office of the Attorney General of Florida.

Tips/Solutions

Make sure to keep all of your repair and maintenance receipts, which will help you prove your case during arbitration. If you are not familiar with the lemon law, consider hiring a consumer rights attorney. If the dealer offers you a settlement, you do not need to take it, but you have the option. If your arbitration hearing does not favor your case, you have 30 days to appeal the decision. Florida's arbitration program is for English-speaking consumers, but translators are welcome.

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