Arkansas Lemon Law Statutes...
Arkansas Lemon Laws and the federal Lemon Law (the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act) provide for compensation to Arkansas consumers of defective automobiles and trucks and other vehicles and products including motorcycles, RV's, boats, computers and other consumer appliances and products. To qualify under the Arkansas Lemon Law or the Federal Lemon Law, you must generally have a product that suffered multiple repair attempts under the manufacturer's factory warranty. Lemon Law compensation can include a refund, replacement or cash
Arkansas State Statutes
Title 4, Subtitle 7, Chapter 90,
Arkansas New Motor Vehicle Quality Assurance Act
This subchapter shall be known and may be cited
as the "Arkansas New Motor Vehicle Quality Assurance Act".
4-90-402 Legislative determinations and
The Arkansas General Assembly recognizes that a
motor vehicle is a major consumer acquisition and that a defective motor vehicle
undoubtedly creates a hardship for the consumer. The Arkansas General Assembly
further recognizes that a duly franchised motor vehicle dealer is an authorized
service agent of the manufacturer. It is the intent of the Arkansas General
Assembly that a good faith motor vehicle warranty complaint by a consumer be
resolved by the manufacturer within a specified period of time. It is further
the intent of the Arkansas General Assembly to provide the statutory procedures
whereby a consumer may receive a replacement motor vehicle, or a full refund,
for a motor vehicle which cannot be brought into conformity with the warranty
provided for in this subchapter. However, nothing in this subchapter shall in
any way limit the rights or remedies which are otherwise available to a consumer
under any other law.
As used in this subchapter, unless the context
(1) "Calendar day" means any
day of the week other than a legal holiday;
(2) "Collateral charges" means
those additional charges to a consumer wholly incurred as a result of the
acquisition of the motor vehicle. For the purposes of this subchapter,
collateral charges include, but are not limited to, manufacturer-installed or
agent-installed items, earned finance charges, sales taxes, title charges, and
charges for extended warranties provided by the manufacturer, its subsidiary,
(3) "Condition" means a
general problem that may be attributable to a defect in more than one (1)
(4) "Consumer" means the
purchaser or lessee, other than for the purposes of lease or resale, of a new
or previously untitled motor vehicle, or any other person entitled by the
terms of the warranty to enforce the obligations of the warranty during the
duration of the motor vehicle quality assurance period, provided the purchaser
has titled and registered the motor vehicle as prescribed by law;
(5) "Incidental charges" means
those reasonable costs incurred by the consumer, including, but not limited
to, towing charges and the costs of obtaining alternative transportation which
are directly caused by the nonconformity or nonconformities which are the
subject of the claim, but shall not include loss of use, loss of income, or
personal injury claims;
(6) "Lease price" means the
(A) The lessor's actual purchase
(B) Collateral charges, if applicable;
(C) Any fee paid to another person to
obtain the lease;
(D) Any insurance or other costs
expended by the lessor for the benefit of the lease;
(E) An amount equal to state and local
sales taxes, not otherwise included as collateral charges, paid by the
lessor when the vehicle was initially purchased; and
(F) An amount equal to five percent
(5%) of the lessor's actual purchase price;
(7) "Lessee" means any
consumer who leases a motor vehicle for one (1) year or more pursuant to a
written lease agreement which provides that the lessee is responsible for
repairs to such motor vehicle;
(8) "Lessee cost" means the
aggregate deposit and rental payments previously paid to the lessor for the
(9) "Lessor" means a person
who holds title to a motor vehicle leased to a lessee under the written lease
agreement or who holds the lessor's rights under such agreement;
(10) "Manufacturer" means:
(A) Any person who is engaged in the
business of constructing or assembling new motor vehicles or installing, on
previously assembled vehicle chassis, special bodies or equipment which,
when installed, form an integral part of the new motor vehicle; or
(B) In the case of motor vehicles not
manufactured in the United States, any person who is engaged in the business
of importing new motor vehicles into the United States for the purpose of
selling or distributing new motor vehicles to new motor vehicle dealers;
(11) "Motor vehicle" or
"vehicle" means any self-propelled vehicle licensed, purchased, or
leased in this state and primarily designed for the transportation of persons
or property over the public streets and highways, but does not include mopeds,
motorcycles, the living facilities of a motor home, or vehicles over ten
thousand pounds (10,000 lbs.) gross vehicle weight rating. For purposes of
this definition, the limit of ten thousand pounds (10,000 lbs.) gross vehicle
weight rating does not apply to motor homes;
(12) "Motor vehicle quality
assurance period" means a period of time that:
(i) On the date of original delivery
of a motor vehicle; or
(ii) In the case of a replacement
vehicle provided by a manufacturer to a consumer under this subchapter, on
the date of delivery of the replacement vehicle to the consumer; and
(B) Ends twenty-four (24) months after
the date of the original delivery of the motor vehicle to a consumer, or the
first twenty-four thousand (24,000) miles of operation attributable to the
consumer, whichever is later;
(13) "Nonconformity" means any
specific or generic defect or condition or any concurrent combination of
defects or conditions that:
(A) Substantially impairs the use,
market value, or safety of a motor vehicle; or
(B) Renders the motor vehicle
nonconforming to the terms of an applicable manufacturer's express warranty
or implied warranty of merchantability;
(14) "Person" means any
natural person, partnership, firm, corporation, association, joint venture,
trust, or other legal entity;
(15) "Purchase price" means
the cash price paid for the motor vehicle appearing in the sales agreement or
contract, including any net allowance for a trade-in vehicle;
(16) "Replacement motor
vehicle" means a motor vehicle which is identical or reasonably
equivalent to the motor vehicle to be replaced, as the motor vehicle replaced
existed at the time of the original acquisition; and
(17) "Warranty" means any
written warranty issued by the manufacturer, or any affirmation of fact or
promise made by the manufacturer, excluding statements made by the dealer, in
connection with the sale or lease of a motor vehicle to a consumer which
relates to the nature of the material or workmanship and affirms or promises
that such material or workmanship is free of defects or will meet a specified
level of performance.
4-90-404 Notice by consumer - Disclosure by
manufacturer, agent, or dealer.
(1) A consumer must notify the
manufacturer of a claim under this subchapter if the manufacturer has made
the disclosure required by subsection (b) of this section.
(2) However, if the manufacturer has
not made the required disclosure, the consumer is not required to notify the
manufacturer of a claim under this subchapter.
(1) At the time of the consumer's
purchase or lease of the vehicle, the manufacturer, its agent, or an
authorized dealer shall provide to the consumer a written statement that
explains the consumer's rights and obligations under this subchapter.
(2) The written statement shall be
prepared by the Consumer Protection Division of the Office of the Attorney
General and shall include the telephone number of the Consumer Protection
Division that the consumer can contact to obtain information regarding his
or her rights and obligations under this subchapter.
(3) For each failure of the
manufacturer, its agent, or an authorized dealer to provide to a consumer
the written statement required under this section, the manufacturer shall be
liable to the State of Arkansas for a civil penalty of not less than
twenty-five dollars ($25.00) nor more than one thousand dollars ($1,000).
(1) The manufacturer shall clearly and
conspicuously disclose to the consumer, in the warranty or owner's manual,
that written notice of the nonconformity is required before the buyer may be
eligible for a refund or replacement of the vehicle.
(2) The manufacturer shall provide the
consumer with conspicuous notice of the address and phone number for its
zone, district, or regional office for this state at the time of vehicle
acquisition, to which the buyer must send notification.
4-90-405 Required warranty repairs.
If a motor vehicle does not conform to the
warranty and the consumer reports the nonconformity to the manufacturer, its
agent, or authorized dealer during the motor vehicle quality assurance period,
the manufacturer, its agent, or authorized dealer shall make such repairs as are
necessary to correct the nonconformity, even if the repairs are made after the
expiration of the term of protection.
4-90-406 Failure to make required repairs.
(1) After three (3) attempts have been
made to repair the same nonconformity that substantially impairs the motor
vehicle, or after one (1) attempt to repair a nonconformity that is likely
to cause death or serious bodily injury, the consumer shall give written
notification, by certified or registered mail, to the manufacturer of the
need to repair the nonconformity in order to allow the manufacturer a final
attempt to cure the nonconformity.
(2) The manufacturer shall, within ten
(10) days after receipt of the notification, notify and provide the consumer
with the opportunity to have the vehicle repaired at a reasonably accessible
repair facility, and, after delivery of the vehicle to the designated repair
facility by the consumer, the manufacturer shall, within ten (10) days,
conform the motor vehicle to the warranty.
(3) If the manufacturer fails to
notify and provide the consumer with the opportunity to have the vehicle
repaired at a reasonably accessible repair facility or fails to perform the
repairs within the time periods prescribed in this subsection, the
requirement that the manufacturer be given a final attempt to cure the
nonconformity does not apply and a nonrebuttable presumption of a reasonable
number of attempts to repair arises.
(A) If the manufacturer, its agent,
or authorized dealer has not conformed the motor vehicle to the warranty
by repairing or correcting one (1) or more nonconformities that
substantially impair the motor vehicle after a reasonable number of
attempts, the manufacturer, within forty (40) days, shall:
(i) At the time of its receipt of
payment of a reasonable offset for use by the consumer, replace the
motor vehicle with a replacement motor vehicle acceptable to the
(ii) Repurchase the motor vehicle
from the consumer or lessor and refund to the consumer or lessor the
full purchase price or lease price, less a reasonable offset for use and
less a reasonable offset for physical damage sustained to the vehicle
while under the ownership of the consumer.
(B) The replacement or refund shall
include payment of all collateral and reasonably incurred incidental
(A) The consumer shall have an
unconditional right to choose a refund rather than a replacement.
(B) At the time of such refund or
replacement, the consumer, lien holder, or lessor shall furnish to the
manufacturer clear title to and possession of the motor vehicle.
(3) The amount of reasonable offset
for use by the consumer shall be determined by multiplying the actual price
of the new motor vehicle paid or payable by the consumer, including any
charges for transportation and manufacturer-installed or agent-installed
options, by a fraction having as its denominator one hundred twenty thousand
(120,000) and having as its numerator the number of miles traveled by the
new motor vehicle prior to the time the buyer first delivered the vehicle to
the manufacturer, its agent, or authorized dealer for correction of the
problem that gave rise to the nonconformity.
(1) Refunds shall be made to the
consumer and lien holder of record, if any, as their interests may appear.
(2) If applicable, refunds shall be
made to the lessor and lessee as follows:
(A) The lessee shall receive the
lessee cost less a reasonable offset for use; and
(B) The lessor shall receive the
lease price less the aggregate deposit and rental payments previously paid
to the lessor for the leased vehicle.
(b) If the manufacturer makes a refund
to the lessor or lessee pursuant to this subchapter, the consumer's lease
agreement with the lessor shall be terminated upon payment of the refund and
no penalty for early termination shall be assessed.
(c) If a replaced vehicle was financed
by the manufacturer, its subsidiary, or agent, the manufacturer, subsidiary,
or agent may not require the buyer to enter into any refinancing agreement
concerning a replacement vehicle that would create any financial obligations
upon the buyer beyond those of the original financing agreement.
4-90-408 Reimbursement of towing and rental
Whenever a vehicle is replaced or refunded under
this subchapter, the manufacturer shall reimburse the consumer for necessary
towing and rental costs actually incurred as a direct result of the
4-90-409 Option to retain use of vehicle.
A consumer has the option of retaining the use of
any vehicle returned under this subchapter until the time that the consumer has
been tendered a full refund or a replacement vehicle of comparable value.
4-90-410 Presumption of reasonable attempts to
Extension of time to repair in case of war,
invasion, strike, fire, flood, or natural disaster.
(a) A rebuttable presumption of a
reasonable number of attempts to repair is considered to have been undertaken
to correct a nonconformity if:
(1) The nonconformity has been subject
to repair as provided in 4-90-406(a), but the nonconformity continues to
(2) The vehicle is out of service by
reason of repair, or attempt to repair, any nonconformity for a cumulative
total of thirty (30) calendar days; or
(3) There have been five (5) or more
attempts, on separate occasions, to repair any nonconformities that together
substantially impair the use and value of the motor vehicle to the consumer.
(1) The thirty (30) calendar days in
subdivision (a)(2) of this section shall be extended by any period of time
during which repair services are not available as a direct result of war,
invasion, strike, fire, flood, or natural disaster.
(2) The manufacturer, its agent, or
authorized dealer shall provide or make provisions for the free use of a
vehicle to any consumer whose vehicle is out of service beyond thirty (30)
days by reason of delayed repair as a direct result of war, invasion,
strike, fire, flood, or natural disaster.
(c) The burden is on the manufacturer to
show that the reason for an extension under subsection (b) of this section was
the direct cause for the failure of the manufacturer, its agent, or authorized
dealer to cure any nonconformity during the time of the event.
4-90-411 Diagnosis or repair - Documentation.
(a) A manufacturer, its agent, or
authorized dealer may not refuse to diagnose or repair any vehicle for the
purpose of avoiding liability under this subchapter.
(1) A manufacturer, its agent, or
authorized dealer shall provide a consumer with a written repair order each
time the consumer's vehicle is brought in for examination or repair.
(2) The repair order must indicate all
work performed on the vehicle, including examination of the vehicle, parts,
4-90-412 Resale of returned nonconforming
If a motor vehicle has been replaced or
repurchased by a manufacturer as the result of a court judgment, an arbitration
award, or any voluntary agreement entered into between a manufacturer and a
consumer that occurs after a consumer complaint has been investigated and
evaluated pursuant to this subchapter or a similar law of another state, the
motor vehicle may not be resold in Arkansas unless:
(1) The manufacturer provides the same
express warranty the manufacturer provided to the original purchaser, except
that the term of the warranty need only last for twelve thousand (12,000)
miles or twelve (12) months after the date of resale, whichever occurs first;
(2) The manufacturer provides a written
disclosure, signed by the consumer, indicating that the vehicle was returned
to the manufacturer because of a nonconformity not cured within a reasonable
time as provided by Arkansas law.
4-90-413 Affirmative defenses.
It is an affirmative defense to any claim under
this subchapter that:
(1) The nonconformity, defect, or
condition does not substantially impair the use, value, or safety of the motor
(2) The nonconformity, defect, or
condition is the result of an accident, abuse, neglect, or unauthorized
modification or alteration of the motor vehicle by persons other than the
manufacturer, its agent, or authorized dealer;
(3) The claim by the consumer was not
filed in good faith; or
(4) Any other defense allowed by law
that may be raised against the claim.
4-90-414 Informal proceeding as precedent.
(1) Any manufacturer doing business in
this state, entering into franchise agreements for the sale of its motor
vehicles in this state, or offering express warranties on its motor vehicles
sold or distributed for sale in this state, shall operate, or participate
in, an informal dispute settlement proceeding located in the State of
Arkansas which complies with the requirements of this section.
(2) The provisions of 4-90-406(b)(1)
and (2) concerning refunds or replacement do not apply to a consumer who has
not first used this informal proceeding before commencing a civil action,
unless the manufacturer allows a consumer to commence an action without
first using this informal procedure.
(A) The consumer shall receive
adequate written notice from the manufacturer of the existence of the
(B) Adequate written notice may
include the incorporation of the informal dispute settlement procedure
into the terms of the written warranty to which the motor vehicle does not
(b) The informal dispute procedure must
be certified by the Consumer Protection Division of the Office of the Attorney
General as meeting the following criteria:
(1) The informal dispute procedure
must comply with the minimum requirements of the Federal Trade Commission
for informal dispute settlement procedures as set forth in 16 C.F.R. 703.1
et seq., as in effect on the date of adoption of this subchapter, unless any
provision of 16 C.F.R. 703.1 et seq. is in conflict with this subchapter, in
which case the provisions of this subchapter shall govern;
(2) The informal dispute procedure
must prescribe a reasonable time, not to exceed thirty (30) days after the
decision is accepted by the buyer, within which the manufacturer or its
agent must fulfill the terms of its decisions;
(A) No documents shall be received
by any informal dispute procedure unless those documents have been
provided to each of the parties in the dispute at or prior to the
proceeding, with an opportunity for the parties to comment on the
documents either in writing or orally.
(B) If a consumer is present during
the informal dispute proceeding, the consumer may request postponement of
the proceeding meeting to allow sufficient time to review any documents
presented at the time of the meeting which had not been presented to the
consumer prior to the time of the meeting;
(A) The informal dispute procedure
shall allow each party to appear and make an oral presentation within the
State of Arkansas unless the consumer agrees to submit the dispute for
decision on the basis of documents alone or by telephone, or unless the
party fails to appear for an oral presentation after reasonable prior
(B) If the consumer agrees to submit
the dispute for decision on the basis of documents alone, then the
manufacturer or dealer representatives may not participate in the
discussion or decision of the dispute;
(5) Consumers shall be given an
adequate opportunity to contest a manufacturer's assertion that a
nonconformity falls within intended specifications for the vehicle by having
the basis of the manufacturer's claim appraised by a technical expert
selected and paid for by the consumer prior to the informal dispute
(6) A consumer may not be charged with
a fee to participate in an informal dispute procedure; and
(7) Any party to the dispute has the
right to be represented by an attorney in an informal dispute proceeding.
(A) The informal dispute procedure
shall annually submit a pool of not less than six (6) members who are
appointed with the advice and consent of the Consumer Protection Division
of the Office of the Attorney General.
(B) Selected strictly by rotation,
one (1) member shall hear disputes scheduled for a particular session
unless the consumer requests a panel of three (3) members, in which case
three (3) members shall hear disputes scheduled for a particular
(C) If the informal dispute
procedure deems it appropriate to require the services of an independent
investigator, such investigator shall be selected from a pool of not less
than four (4) members who are appointed annually with the advice and
consent of the Consumer Protection Division of the Office of the Attorney
General and from which the particular investigator shall be selected
strictly by rotation.
(2) Upon notification to the
administrator of any informal dispute procedure that a determination has
been made by the Consumer Protection Division of the Office of the Attorney
General that a member of any pool is not conforming to standards of fairness
and impartiality, that member shall be immediately removed from the pool.
4-90-415 Enforcement - Exclusivity - Costs and
(a) A consumer may bring a civil action
to enforce this subchapter in a court of competent jurisdiction.
(b) This subchapter does not limit the
rights and remedies that are otherwise available to a consumer under any
applicable provisions of law.
(c) A consumer who prevails in any legal
proceeding under this subchapter is entitled to recover as part of the
judgment a sum equal to the aggregate amount of costs and expenses, including
attorney's fees based upon actual time expended by the attorney, determined by
the court to have been reasonably incurred by the consumer for or in
connection with the commencement and prosecution of the action.
4-90-416 Time limitation for commencement of
(a) An action brought under this
subchapter must be commenced within two (2) years following the date the buyer
first reports the nonconformity to the manufacturer, its agent, or authorized
(b) When the buyer has commenced an
informal dispute settlement procedure described in 4-90-414, the two-year
period specified in subsection (a) of this section begins to run at the time
the informal dispute settlement procedure is being commenced.
4-90-417 Deceptive trade practices.
A violation of any of the provisions of this
subchapter shall be deemed a deceptive trade practice under 4-88-101 et seq.