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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

  

                         Laws of Minnesota 1985 

                        CHAPTER 284-H.F.No. 242 
           An act relating to commerce; requiring manufacturers 
          to make certain new motor vehicle warranty disclosures 
          directly to consumers; requiring a study of protection 
          for purchasers of agricultural vehicles; amending 
          Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 325F.665, subdivision 
          3. 
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
    Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1984, section 325F.665, 
subdivision 3, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 3.  [MANUFACTURER'S DUTY TO REFUND OR REPLACE.] (a) 
If the manufacturer, its agents, or its authorized dealers are 
unable to conform the new motor vehicle to any applicable 
express warranty by repairing or correcting any defect or 
condition which substantially impairs the use or market value of 
the motor vehicle to the consumer after a reasonable number of 
attempts, the manufacturer shall, at the consumer's option, 
either replace the new motor vehicle with a comparable motor 
vehicle or accept return of the vehicle from the consumer and 
refund to the consumer the full purchase price, including the 
cost of any options or other modifications arranged, installed, 
or made by the manufacturer, its agent, or its authorized dealer 
within 30 days after the date of original delivery, and all 
other charges including, but not limited to, sales tax, license 
fees and registration fees, less a reasonable allowance for the 
consumer's use of the vehicle not exceeding ten cents per mile 
driven or ten percent of the purchase price of the vehicle, 
whichever is less.  Refunds must be made to the consumer, and 
lienholder, if any, as their interests appear on the records of 
the registrar of motor vehicles.  A reasonable allowance for use 
is that amount directly attributable to use by the consumer and 
any previous consumer prior to his or her first report of the 
nonconformity to the manufacturer, agent, or dealer and during 
any subsequent period when the vehicle is not out of service by 
reason of repair.  It is an affirmative defense to any claim 
under this section (1) that an alleged nonconformity does not 
substantially impair the use or market value, or (2) that a 
nonconformity is the result of abuse, neglect, or unauthorized 
modifications or alterations of a motor vehicle by anyone other 
than the manufacturer, its agent or its authorized dealer.  
     (b) It is presumed that a reasonable number of attempts 
have been undertaken to conform a new motor vehicle to the 
applicable express warranties, if (1) the same nonconformity has 
been subject to repair four or more times by the manufacturer, 
its agents, or its authorized dealers within the express 
warranty term or during the period of one year following the 
date of original delivery of the motor vehicle to a consumer, 
whichever is the earlier date, but the nonconformity continues 
to exist, or (2) the vehicle is out of service by reason of 
repair for a cumulative total of 30 or more business days during 
the term or during the period, whichever is the earlier date.  
     (c) If the nonconformity results in a complete failure of 
the braking or steering system of the new motor vehicle and is 
likely to cause death or serious bodily injury if the vehicle is 
driven, it is presumed that a reasonable number of attempts have 
been undertaken to conform the vehicle to the applicable express 
warranties if the conformity has been subject to repair at least 
once by the manufacturer, its agents, or its authorized dealers 
within the express warranty term or during the period of one 
year following the date of original delivery of the motor 
vehicle to a consumer, whichever is the earlier date, and the 
nonconformity continues to exist.  
      (d) The term of an express warranty, the one-year period 
and the 30-day period shall be extended by any period of time 
during which repair services are not available to the consumer 
because of a war, invasion, strike, or fire, flood, or other 
natural disaster.  
     (e) The presumption contained in paragraph (b) applies 
against a manufacturer only if the manufacturer, its agent, or 
its authorized dealer has received prior written notification 
from or on behalf of the consumer at least once and an 
opportunity to cure the defect alleged.  If the notification is 
received by the manufacturer's agent or authorized dealer, the 
agent or dealer must forward it to the manufacturer by certified 
mail, return receipt requested.  
    (f) At the time of purchase the manufacturer, either 
directly or through its agent or its authorized dealer, must 
provide directly to the consumer a written statement on a 
separate piece of paper, in ten point all capital type, in 
substantially the following form:  "IMPORTANT:  IF THIS VEHICLE 
IS DEFECTIVE, YOU MAY BE ENTITLED UNDER STATE LAW TO REPLACEMENT 
OF IT OR A REFUND OF ITS PURCHASE PRICE.  HOWEVER, TO BE 
ENTITLED TO REFUND OR REPLACEMENT, YOU MUST FIRST NOTIFY THE 
MANUFACTURER, ITS AGENT, OR ITS AUTHORIZED DEALER OF THE PROBLEM 
IN WRITING AND GIVE THEM AN OPPORTUNITY TO REPAIR THE VEHICLE."  
    Sec. 2.  [STUDY; PROTECTION FOR PURCHASERS OF AGRICULTURAL 
VEHICLES.] 
    The consumer services unit of the office of the attorney 
general shall study the need for and applicability of consumer 
protection legislation for purchasers of farm trucks, farm 
tractors, and implements of husbandry similar to the protection 
afforded purchasers of new motor vehicles under Minnesota 
Statutes, section 325F.665.  The results of the study and any 
recommendations must be submitted to the committee on 
agriculture in the house and the committee of agriculture and 
natural resources in the senate by November 1, 1985.  The 
attorney general shall use existing staff and funds to complete 
the report.  
    The committees shall make recommendations to the 
legislature by January 1, 1986.  
    Sec. 3.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
    Section 1 is effective January 1, 1986.  Section 2 is 
effective the day following final enactment. 
    Approved May 31, 1985