Farm equipment lemon law guide
A guide for consumers
1. What is the purpose of the New York Farm Equipment Lemon Law?
The New York Farm Equipment Lemon Law provides a legal remedy for New York residents who buy or lease new farm equipment that turns out to be defective, or in other words, a lemon. If your farm equipment fails to conform to the terms of its written warranty, and the supplier or authorized dealer is unable to repair the equipment after a reasonable number of attempts, you may be entitled to a full refund or comparable replacement equipment.
2. Who is covered by the Farm Equipment Lemon Law?
The law covers New York residents who are the purchasers, lessees, or transferees of farm equipment, other than for the purposes of resale.
3. Who does the Farm Equipment Lemon Law apply to?
The law applies to “suppliers.” A supplier is the manufacturer, wholesaler or distributor that issues the warranty effective in New York State for the farm equipment sold by the dealer.
4. What farm equipment is covered under the Farm Equipment Lemon Law?
The law covers new self-propelled farm equipment and implements of husbandry that are purchased, leased, or otherwise received (e.g., via gift) by New York residents for more than $1,500 and not for the purpose of resale.
Accessories and parts are also covered if they are (a) included in the lease or sale of the farm equipment and (b) designed and manufactured primarily for agricultural purposes.
The following types of equipment are NOT covered:
- Farm equipment not specifically manufactured for the United States market or in compliance with the laws and standards of the United States.
- If this exception applies, the Farm Equipment Lemon Law (continues on the next page) 2 requires the supplier to obtain written acknowledgement from the buyer, at the time of purchase, that you have been made aware that such equipment is not covered by the lemon law.
- Used farm equipment, meaning it has already been owned by another consumer. The law only covers equipment that, at the time of purchase, is being transferred for the first time from a manufacturer, distributor or new farm machinery dealer and has not already been registered or titled in any state.
5. Am I covered if I purchased the farm equipment outside of New York State?
Yes, so long as you are a New York resident and meet the other requirements of the law. The Farm Equipment Lemon Law applies to purchases made by New York residents, regardless of whether the equipment was sold within or outside of New York State.
6. What is the supplier’s obligation to provide a warranty under the law?
The law requires suppliers to provide a fair and reasonable written warranty for new farm equipment for a duration of no less than twelve months from the date of delivery of the equipment to the consumer. The supplier may provide a warranty that covers the equipment for a longer time but is not required to do so by the law.
The Farm Equipment Lemon Law enforces written warranties provided by the suppliers of new farm equipment. You should review the terms of your equipment’s written warranty carefully to determine the length and scope of its coverage.
7. What is the supplier's duty of repair?
The Farm Equipment Lemon Law places a duty upon the supplier to repair— free of charge and without any deductible—any defect covered by any express warranty. Once timely notice of the defect is given in writing, the supplier or authorized dealer may not charge for the repairs. If you have been charged for such repairs or a deductible, you should contact the Attorney General’s Office.
8. What should you do if you become aware of a problem with your farm equipment?
You should immediately report in writing any defect, “nonconformity,” or “condition” to the manufacturer, wholesaler, distributor, or authorized dealer of your farm equipment.
A “condition” is a general problem, such as difficulty in starting, that can result from a defect of one or more parts.
A “nonconformity” is any condition of the farm machinery that substantially impairs the value or safety of such equipment, or its use for the purpose for which it was intended.
9. How do I notify a dealer or supplier of a problem?
You should provide notice of a problem to the dealer or supplier in writing at any time during the warranty period. Within the last 30 days of the warranty period, you may provide notice orally, but you must follow up with written notice within 30 days after the end of the warranty period.
10. What should I do if the dealer fails to start the repairs?
If the dealer won’t start repairs on your farm equipment, you may forward written notice of the dealer’s refusal to the supplier.
The supplier must commence repairs within twenty days of receiving this notice.
If the supplier fails to undertake repairs, the supplier must provide information to you about consumer complaint remedies.
11. What is the supplier’s duty to provide a refund or replacement of your farm equipment?
As long as the problem you are complaining about continues to exist after a reasonable number of repair attempts and the problem substantially impairs the value, use or safety of the equipment, you may be eligible for a refund or replacement.
12. Does the law specify the number of required repair attempts?
Yes. The law defines a reasonable number of repair attempts to mean four or more failed repair attempts or causing the farm equipment to be out of service by reason of repair for a cumulative total of 30 days.
13. Are there any exceptions to the supplier’s duty to refund or replace?
The supplier does not have a duty to make a refund or provide a replacement if:
- the defect does not substantially impair the value, use or safety of the equipment; or
- the defect is the result of abuse, neglect or unauthorized modifications or alterations of the equipment by the consumer.
14. What constitutes substantial impairment of value, use, or safety?
It will depend on the facts in each case. In general, your complaint must be about a serious problem. For example, a defect in the engine that makes the farm equipment inoperable is clearly substantial. In some cases, the cumulative effect of many lesser defects can add up to substantial impairment.
15. Can you still obtain a refund or a replacement if the defect has been repaired?
Yes, you may still be entitled to relief under the Farm Equipment Lemon Law, provided all the other legal requirements are met, if a defect continued to exist at the end of the fourth repair attempt, or if the equipment was out-of-service by reason of repair for a total of at least 30 days, even if the defect was subsequently repaired.
16. Do I have a choice of whether I can get a refund or replacement?
Yes, so long as comparable equipment is available from the supplier. If you qualify for relief under the Farm Equipment Lemon Law, you have the option of receiving either a refund or a replacement. The consumer—not the supplier or authorized dealer—makes this decision.
17. What is comparable replacement equipment?
You are entitled to receive equipment of the same year and model, which has approximately the same amount of use as the equipment being replaced.
18. What should be included in your refund?
A refund should include the following: the price of the equipment (purchase price or lease price plus trade-in allowance) plus any fees the consumer paid and less a deduction for use.
The deduction for use is calculated based on different formulas provided in the law, depending on whether the equipment contains an engine hour meter, hours are the basic usage standard, and the equipment is “self-propelled harvesting equipment.”
19. If successful, can you recover sales tax?
Yes. State and local sales taxes are refunded directly by the New York State Commissioner of Taxation and Finance who will determine the appropriate amount to be refunded under the law. You must complete and submit an “Application for Credit or Refund of Sales or Use Tax” (Form AU-11) to the NYS Tax Department, TDAB – Sales Tax Refunds, W A Harriman Campus, Albany, New York 12227. (Such form may be obtained through the supplier or directly from the Department of Taxation and Finance.)
You have three years from the date a refund is received from the supplier to apply for the tax refund.
20. If the purchase was financed, how is the refund divided?
The refund by the supplier is the same whether the equipment was financed or not. However, when the equipment was financed, instead of the entire refund going to you, the refund must be divided between you and the lender (the bank or finance company). Generally, the lender will calculate how much is still owed by you and the refund will be applied first to that amount. The balance of the refund will then go to you.
21. If the farm equipment was leased, how is the refund calculated?
When the farm equipment is leased, the refund due from the supplier is divided between you and the leasing company. The lease price to be refunded to you is the total of your down payment (including any trade-in allowance) plus the total of monthly lease payments, minus interest charges and any other service fees.
If the monthly payment includes other service fees, such as insurance or other costs, paid for your benefit, such amounts will also be deducted from your refund. The leasing company’s portion of the refund is the balance of the “lease price,” as that term is defined by the law.
22. If my lease ends, can I still file a Lemon Law claim?
Yes, the ending of the term of your lease does not prevent you from filing or maintaining an arbitration claim under the Farm Equipment Lemon Law.
23. What should I do in advance to give me the best chance of qualifying for a refund or replacement of my farm equipment?
- Report the problem in writing to the supplier or authorized dealer.
- If the problem persists, bring the equipment into the dealer or supplier promptly for repairs and continue to do so until you reach four repair attempts or 30 days out of service.
- You must be able to establish the necessary repair attempts or days outof-service due to repairs within the applicable warranty period. Therefore, it is important to keep copies of all paperwork associated with the repairs and any correspondence with the dealer and/or supplier.
24. How can you enforce your rights under the Farm Equipment Lemon Law?
You have the choice of either participating in an arbitration program or suing the supplier directly in court. Any action under the Farm Equipment Lemon Law must be commenced within twenty-four months (or 2 years) of the date of original delivery of the equipment to the consumer.
25. If you win court, can attorney’s fees also be recovered?
Yes. The law authorizes the court to award you reasonable attorney’s fees if you are successful.
26. What is an arbitration proceeding?
Arbitration is often much less complicated, time consuming, and expensive than going to court. The arbitration hearing is informal and strict rules of evidence do not apply. Arbitrators, rather than judges, listen to each side, review the evidence, and render a decision.
27. What arbitration programs are available to you in New York?
You may participate in the Farm Equipment Lemon Law Arbitration Program (the “New York Program”), as provided by the lemon law. The New York Program is administrated by the New York State Dispute Resolution Association (“NYSDRA”) under regulations issued by the New York Attorney General. (A copy of the regulations may be found in the back of this booklet). Decisions under the New York Program are binding on both parties. You may also choose to participate in the supplier’s arbitration program if one has been established. Decisions under the supplier’s program are not binding on you. Consequently, if you have gone through the supplier’s program and are not satisfied, you may still apply for arbitration under the New York Program. However, any prior arbitration decision may be considered at any subsequent arbitration hearing or court proceeding.
28. How do I submit a request for arbitration?
Please complete the form and send it to the Office of the New York State Attorney General by mail to the Office of the New York State Attorney General — Lemon Law Unit, 28 Liberty Street, New York NY 10005, or by email to email@example.com. Please provide a brief but clear statement of your problem and answer all questions as accurately as possible, especially date and mileage questions.
29. How does the New York Program Operate?
The Attorney General’s office will review the “Request for Arbitration” form to determine whether your claim is eligible under the Farm Equipment Lemon Law to be heard by an arbitrator. If accepted, the form will be forwarded to the Administrator for processing. The Administrator will then ask you to pay the required filing fee. Upon receiving the filing fee and a required separate fee paid by the supplier, the Administrator will forward your Request for Arbitration to the supplier. The Administrator will also appoint an arbitrator and schedule a hearing to be held within 35 days.
If rejected, the form will be returned to you together with an explanation for the rejection. A step-by-step description of the New York Program follows this “Question & Answer” section in this booklet.
30. Who are the arbitrators?
The arbitrators are volunteers who have been trained in the Lemon Law and in arbitration procedures by the Attorney General’s Office and the Administrator.
31. Is a consumer entitled to an oral hearing?
Yes. You have an absolute right to an oral hearing. At an oral hearing, both you and the supplier’s representation have the opportunity to present your case in person before an arbitrator.
You may also elect to have a hearing on documents only by indicating this preference on the “Request for Arbitration” form. In a “documents only” hearing, both sides must present their positions in writing. If you request a “documents only” hearing, the supplier may object, in which case an oral hearing will be scheduled.
Finally, you have the right to a virtual hearing. At a virtual hearing, both you and the supplier’s representation can present your case before an arbitrator through a Zoom meeting. If you request a virtual hearing, the supplier may object, in which case an oral hearing will be scheduled.
32. Can you request an adjournment of a hearing?
Yes. Either party may apply to the arbitrator, through the Administrator, for a reasonable adjournment of the hearing date. Upon the finding of good cause, the arbitrator will reschedule the hearing.
33. May a stenographic record or tape recording be made of the hearing?
Yes. Any party to the arbitration may arrange, on its own, for a stenographic record or a tape recording of the hearing at its own expense, even if the other party objects. If a stenographer or tape recorder will be used, reasonable prior notice, through the Administrator, must be given to the other party.
34. Do you need an attorney for the arbitration hearing?
No. The New York Program is designed to be accessible to you without the need for an attorney. Both you and the supplier may use an attorney or any other person to assist you if you so choose. However, the law does not provide for the recovery of attorneys’ fees for representation in an arbitration proceeding.
35. How should you prepare for the hearing?
You should keep a copy of your “Request for Arbitration” form to use as a guide in preparing for the hearing. The form contains much of the information needed at the hearing. In addition, you are advised to:
(a) Gather Documents. Bring to the hearing records of everything pertaining to the purchase or lease and the problem, including a copy of the purchase contract (invoice) or lease, all correspondence, work orders, and the applicable warranty.
(b) Organize Records. Keep records in chronological order. This will serve as a guide in presenting the history of the problem.
(c) Prepare an Outline. Having an outline will help to present and remember relevant information.
(d) Prepare Questions to Ask the Supplier’s Representative. Preparing questions to ask the supplier’s representative will help assure that no important question is omitted.
(e) Arrange for Witnesses. The presence of witnesses, for example, a mechanic, or their sworn statements may be helpful to document the defect or problem your equipment has.
36. What if you do not have all the documents?
Upon payment of the filing fee and prior to the hearing, the consumer or the supplier may make a written request to the arbitrator, through the Administrator, to direct the other party to provide any necessary documents or other information. Either party may also request the arbitrator to subpoena documents or witnesses to appear at the hearing.
A sample letter requesting documents may be found in this booklet.
37. May the arbitrator direct that the equipment be made available for examination?
Yes. The arbitrator may direct you to make the equipment available for examination. The arbitrator has the discretion to examine or ride in the equipment in the presence of both parties.
38. How should you present your case at the hearing?
At the hearing, you should present your case in a clear, organized, and concise manner. You are advised to:
(a) State the specific nature of the problem or defect.
(b) State any conversations with the dealer’s or supplier’s representatives.
(c) Describe and document, where possible, each repair attempt.
(d) Describe and document any new developments which may have occurred since the “Request for Arbitration” form was submitted.
(e) Offer proof of each point, especially those the supplier may dispute.
(f) Present any witness that may provide relevant information. (g) State the relief requested.
(h) At the end of the presentation, briefly summarize the facts discussed.
39. What happens if either party fails to appear at the hearing?
Unless the hearing has been properly rescheduled, if either the supplier or you fail to appear at an oral hearing, the arbitrator will nevertheless conduct the hearing and issue a decision based upon the evidence presented and any documents contained in the file.
40. When can you expect a decision?
You may expect a decision, generally, within 10 days of the hearing. Sometimes, however, the arbitrator requests that additional documents or information be submitted, in which case the decision may be delayed.
41. Can you recover the filing fee?
Yes. If you are successful, the arbitrator’s decision in your favor must include the return of the filing fee paid by you. Also, if you settle the case any time before a decision is rendered, you should seek to recover the filing fee.
42. When must a supplier comply with an arbitrator’s decision?
Within thirty days from the date you notify the supplier of your acceptance of the arbitrator’s decision. In most cases, the supplier’s representative will contact you within this period to arrange for the return of the equipment in exchange for either a refund or a replacement. Failure of the supplier to comply within this time period entitles you to recover an additional $25 for each business day of noncompliance, up to $500. If the supplier does not voluntarily pay any applicable penalty, you may sue to recover this penalty in Small Claims Court. However, this deadline and penalties are not applicable where the consumer requests replacement equipment built to order or with options that are not comparable to the equipment being replaced, or the consumer has otherwise made compliance within the prescribed period impossible.
43. What happens if the supplier does not comply with the arbitrator’s award?
If the supplier does not comply with the award, you can enforce the arbitrator’s decision through the courts by bringing an action to confirm the award. This action must be commenced within one year of receipt of the decision. You should consult a private attorney if you wish to pursue this remedy. If you are successful, the court will convert the arbitrator’s award into a court judgment and may award reasonable attorney’s fees. The court may also award reasonable attorneys’ fees incurred to enforce the collection of the award.
44. Under what circumstances can an arbitrator’s decision be modified?
The grounds for modification are very limited. Generally, awards may be modified only to correct a miscalculation or a technical mistake in the award. For example, a modification may be requested where the usage deduction was miscalculated, or the filing fee was omitted from the refund.
45. When must a request for modification be made?
Either party may seek a modification by the arbitrator of the award by written application to the Administrator within 20 days of receiving the award. The other party will be given the opportunity to object to the modification. The arbitrator must rule on all such requests within 30 days after the request is received. To modify an award after 20 days, an application to a court may be necessary.
46. Can an arbitrator’s decision be challenged?
Either party may commence a lawsuit to challenge an arbitrator’s award within 90 days of receipt of the award. However, the grounds for such challenges are limited by law. Generally, the courts will uphold an arbitrator’s award if it is supported by evidence and is grounded in reason. Reasonable attorney’s fees may be awarded by the court if you are successful in challenging or defending an arbitration award.
47. What role will the Attorney General’s Office or the Administrator play if an award is challenged in court?
Neither the New York Attorney General’s Office nor the Administrator is authorized to represent you in such a challenge; this is the responsibility of your own attorney.
48. Can you apply for another hearing under the New York Program if you lost the first one?
It depends. A decision under the New York Program is binding on both parties. However, if new facts arise after a hearing was held, you may reapply for a new hearing based on the new facts.
49. Does the Lemon Law limit any of the other legal remedies already available to you?
No. The Farm Equipment Lemon Law adds to your arsenal of existing legal remedies. These legal remedies can be explained by your attorney.
50. Can your rights under the Farm Equipment Lemon Law be waived?
No. Any contract clause which seeks to waive your rights under the Farm Equipment Lemon Law is void.
51. Where can you get help or more information on the lemon law?
You may contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General help line at 1-800-771-7755 or consult a lawyer.
If the car, motorcycle, motor home, wheelchair, or self-propelled farm equipment you bought or leased turns out to be defective, and if the dealer or manufacturer cannot fix it, you can pursue arbitration under New York’s lemon laws. An arbitrator hears from both you and the seller. The arbitrator decides whether you should receive a refund and, if so, how much you should receive.
How is the Attorney General involved?
The Office of the New York State Attorney General (OAG) is officially involved only at the beginning of the in determining eligibility for arbitration, but can help answer your questions along the way.
Who manages the arbitration?
After OAG has initiated the process, the arbitration itself is done by the New York State Dispute Resolution Association (NYSDRA), which is not part of OAG. NYSDRA is contracted by OAG to administer the arbitration program. The arbitrators are volunteers who work through local Community Dispute Resolution Centers (CDRCs) .
These arbitrations are a program of the New York State Unified Court System’s Alternative Dispute Resolution program.
NYSDRA’s lemon-law program manager is available to answer questions about the process.
What vehicles and equipment are covered by this arbitration program?
This program is for the following items that you have bought or leased:
- new cars
- new motorcycles
- new motorhomes
- new wheelchairs
- new self-propelled farm equipment
- used cars
- used motorcycles
New York state has a separate arbitration program specifically for wear and tear on leased cars.
How does the arbitration program work?
There are 10 steps to the process:
- You officially request arbitration
- Our office (OAG) reviews your request and accepts or rejects it
- The program administrator requests the filing fee from you
- The administrator begins the arbitration process, appoints an arbitrator, and schedules a hearing
- The administrator notifies the manufacturer or dealer, the manufacturer responds, and you reply
- You or the manufacturer or dealer can request documents or witnesses during the pre-hearing discovery
- You and the manufacturer or dealer meet with the arbitrator for the hearing
- The arbitrator makes a decision
- The administrator reviews the decision document to ensure it is complete and accurate
- You and the manufacturer or dealer have 20 days to modify or appeal the decision
Who is involved in the arbitration process?
- You – the consumer who bought or leased the car or other equipment
- The lemon-law unit – the OAG unit that reviews your arbitration request
- The administrator – NYSDRA’s lemon-law program manager, who manages the arbitration process, paperwork, and schedule
- The arbitrator – the official in the local CRDC who hears from you and the manufacturer and decides how to resolve your claim
- The manufacturer if your dispute involves a new car, motorcycle, motor home, wheelchair, or self-propelled farm equipment; or the dealer if the dispute involves a used car or used motorcycle
- Any third parties – the people or businesses who may have been involved in the purchase or lease, such as a finance company, dealer, or reseller Witnesses – anyone else that you or the manufacturer invite to the hearing to provide evidence
Steps in the arbitration process
1: You request arbitration
If your car or other vehicle is defective and the manufacturer or dealer cannot repair it within a reasonable amount of time or after a reasonable number of attempts, you can request the Attorney General to start arbitration:
- Download our form to request arbitration
- Complete the form and return it to:
Attorney General’s Lemon Law Unit
28 Liberty St.
New York NY 10005
2: OAG reviews your application
We promptly review your submission. We send you a letter letting you know if we accepted or rejected your submission, and explaining our reasons:
- We may reject your application because your claim is not eligible for arbitration – for example, if your car was not bought or registered in New York state. If this is the case, you cannot pursue arbitration.
- We may reject your application because it has errors that can be corrected. If so, you can fix the errors and resubmit the form.
- If we accept your application, we will let you know that we have forwarded your documents to the administrator (NYSDRA) to start the arbitration.
3: The administrator asks you to send a filing fee
The administrator receives your form and writes to you to ask you to pay the filing fee and requests your supporting documents:
- If the administrator does not receive your payment after 30 days, it sends you a second notice.
- If the administrator does not receive your payment after another 30 days, it closes your case.
4: The administrator starts your case, appoints an arbitrator, and schedules your hearing
The date the administrator receives your filing fee is considered the case filing date. This is when your arbitration officially begins, and is considered Day 1 . The following things now happen:
- The administrator appoints an arbitrator.
- The administrator schedules a hearing for a specific date no later than 35 days after the filing date.
Most arbitration hearings are done in person. The administrator schedules the hearing based on your preferred location and time of day. The form provides locations for your convenience.
You can also request a documents-only hearing, which does not require your presence. However, the hearing can be done this way only if the manufacturer agrees.
You may also request a virtual hearing if you are unable to attend an in-person hearing.
5: The administrator notifies the manufacturer or dealer of your claim, the manufacturer responds, and you reply
Within five days of the filing date, the administrator sends the manufacturer or dealer a copy of your request for arbitration and any supporting documents.
If your case involves a third party, such as a bank, finance company, or leasing company:
- The administrator notifies the third party of your claim and the date of the hearing.
- The administrator requests the third party to submit any relevant financial information before the hearing.
The manufacturer or dealer has 15 days from the filing date to respond to your claim. If you requested a documents-only hearing or a virtual hear, the manufacturer can object, and the administrator will then schedule an in-person hearing.
The administrator mails you any response from the manufacturer or dealer. You have until Day 25 to reply. If you do, the administrator mails a copy of your reply to the manufacturer or dealer.
6: Either party can request information or witnesses during pre-hearing discovery
Before the hearing, you or the manufacturer or dealer can request the arbitrator to ask the other party to supply specific documents or information, such as repair orders. Either of you can also request the arbitrator to subpoena a witness.
If either party ignores the arbitrator’s request for documents or witnesses, the arbitrator is allowed to interpret this as a refusal to cooperate. This refusal can count against that party when the arbitrator is weighing the evidence.
7: You, the manufacturer or dealer, and the arbitrator appear at the hearing
The hearing is not a formal court trial, so formal rules of evidence that would be used in a court do not apply. However, it has certain guidelines and a standard sequence of events:
- You present your evidence and any witnesses.
- The manufacturer or dealer presents its evidence and any witnesses.
- You, the manufacturer or dealer, and the arbitrator, can question the other party or any witness. The arbitrator administers an oath or affirmation to each person who testifies.
- Formal rules of evidence do not apply. The hearing is not run as strictly as a court case.
- Each party has a full and equal opportunity to present its case.
- A typical hearing lasts between one and two hours.
- The arbitrator can examine, ride in, or drive the vehicle named in your claim. You and the manufacturer or dealer can be present and accompany the arbitrator on any examination or ride.
8: The arbitrator makes a decision
The arbitrator must render a decision:
- within five days after the hearing date, if more time is not required to collect more documents
- within 40 days after the hearing date if more time is required to gather extra documents
The decision must:
- include the arbitrator’s signature and certification
- contain a summary of the issues in dispute and the evidence presented by each side
- include the arbitrator's findings
- indicate whether or not the arbitrator, based on the stated findings, has decided that you qualify for relief under the lemon law
If the arbitrator finds that you are entitled to relief, the arbitrator must award either a refund or a comparable replacement vehicle, depending on what you requested. The decision must contain:
- a calculation of the award, including any allowable deductions for excess mileage
- a refund of your filing fee
Once you notify the manufacturer or dealer that you have accepted the decision, the manufacturer or dealer must comply within 30 days after the date of your acceptance.
If the manufacturer or dealer does not comply within 30 days after your acceptance of the decision, you are entitled to a penalty of $25-500 for each day of noncompliance.
If, after that, the manufacturer still refuses to comply, you can go to court within one year of the decision. The court can confirm the arbitrator’s decision and issue a judgment that can be enforced against the manufacturer or dealer. The court can also award attorney fees.
9: The administrator reviews your decision
The administrator reviews your decision for technical completeness and accuracy. If the administrator finds any errors, the arbitrator must approve any corrections.
When the decision is final, the administrator mails copies of the decision to you, the manufacturer or dealer, and OAG within 45 days of the filing date.
10: You and the manufacturer can modify or appeal the decision
If you or the manufacturer believe the arbitrator has made a mistake:
- Either you or the manufacturer can request a modification within 20 days of receiving the decision.
- The arbitrator must act upon the request within 30 days of receiving the decision.
- You and the manufacturer or dealer are limited by law on what kinds of modifications you can make [Civil Practice Law and Rules (CPLR) section 7511(c)].
- Both you and the manufacturer or dealer must accept the modified decision. If either of you is dissatisfied with the decision, you may be able to request a judge to review it (CPLR Article 75).
- Either you, or the manufacturer or dealer, can start a lawsuit to vacate (reverse) the decision or modify an award within 90 days of receiving the decision (CPLR section 7511(b)].
1. “Consumer” means a New York resident who is the purchaser, lessee or transferee of farm equipment, other than for the purposes of resale.
2. “Farm equipment” means any self-propelled farm equipment and implements of husbandry and the accessories and parts included in the sale or lease of same designed and manufactured primarily to be used for agricultural purposes and for the United States market or in compliance with the laws and standards of the United States for which the purchase or lease price for each piece of farm equipment exceeds one thousand five hundred dollars and which is being transferred for the first time from a manufacturer, distributor or new farm machinery dealer and has not been registered or titled in this state or any other state.
3. “Express warranty” or “warranty” means the written affirmation of fact or promise made by a supplier to a consumer in connection with the sale of farm equipment which relates to the nature of the material or workmanship, including any terms or conditions precedent to the enforcement of obligations under that warranty.
4. (a) “Use deduction formula” shall be used on farm equipment which does not contain an engine hour meter or for which hours is not the basic usage standard and means a dollar amount obtained by multiplying the full purchase price or lease price of the farm equipment by a fraction, the denominator of which is one thousand eight hundred twentyfive and the numerator of which is the number of days after delivery of the farm equipment.
(b) “Non-seasonal equipment hours deduction formula” shall be used on farm equipment which contains an engine hour meter and for which hours is the basic usage standard and means the hours of use times the full purchase price, or lease price if applicable, divided by five thousand hours. (c) “Seasonal equipment hours deduction formula” shall be used on self-propelled harvesting equipment which contains an engine hour meter and for which hours is the basic usage standard and means the hours of use times the full purchase price, or lease price if applicable, divided by two thousand hours.
5. “Lessee” means any consumer who leases farm equipment pursuant to a written lease agreement which provides that the lessee is responsible for repairs to such farm equipment.
6. “Lease price” means the aggregate of: (a) the lessor's actual purchase cost; (b) the freight cost, if applicable; (c) the cost for accessories, if applicable; (d) any fee paid to another to obtain the lease; and (e) an amount equal to five percent of the lessor's actual purchase cost as prescribed in paragraph (a) of this subdivision.
7. “Supplier” means the manufacturer, wholesaler or distributor that issues the warranty effective in New York State for the farm equipment sold by the dealer.
8. “Dealer” means any person selling or agreeing to sell farm equipment under an agreement with a manufacturer, wholesaler or distributor.
9. “Nonconformity” means any condition of the farm machinery that substantially impairs the value or safety of such equipment, or its use for the purpose for which it was intended.
§ 697-a. Warranty to consumers.
1. Every supplier of new farm equipment which is sold within or outside of this state shall provide a fair and reasonable warranty on all new farm equipment that shall be of no less duration than twelve months following the date of original delivery of the farm equipment to the consumer. If the new farm equipment does not conform to all applicable express warranties during the warranty period, and the consumer reports the nonconformity, defect or condition to the supplier or its dealer in writing before the end of the warranty period, or verbally within thirty days before the warranty ends and then in writing within thirty days after the expiration of the warranty period, such supplier or dealer shall make such repairs as are necessary to conform the new equipment to such express warranties at no charge to the consumer.
1-a. Farm equipment that is not specifically manufactured for the United States market or in compliance with the laws and standards of the United States is not covered by this article. A dealer who sells such farm equipment shall receive written acknowledgement from the purchaser that the purchaser has been made aware that such equipment is not covered by this article.
2. If the supplier or its dealer are unable to conform the farm equipment to any applicable express warranty by repairing the nonconformity after a reasonable number of attempts, the supplier, at the option of the consumer, shall replace the farm equipment with comparable farm equipment provided that such comparable equipment is available from the supplier, or accept return of the equipment from the consumer and refund to the consumer the full purchase price or, if applicable, the lease price and any trade-in allowance plus fees and charges, less a deduction for use calculated pursuant to the formula provided in subdivision four of section six hundred ninety-seven of this article. For purposes of this section, fees and charges shall include but not be limited to license fees, registration fees or other governmental charges. Refunds shall be made to the consumer or lienholder, if any, as their interests may appear on the records of ownership. Such refund shall also be accompanied by the proper application for credit for refund of state and local sales tax as published by the Department of Taxation and Finance and by a notice that the sales tax paid on the purchase price, lease price or portion thereof being refunded is refundable by the Commissioner of Taxation and Finance in accordance with the provisions of subdivision (f) of section eleven hundred thirty-nine of the tax law.
3. If a dealer refuses to undertake the repairs within the time allotted pursuant to subdivision one of this section, the consumer may immediately forward written notice of such refusal to the supplier, who shall have twenty days from receipt of such notice to commence such repairs.
4. (a) If the supplier refuses to undertake the repairs, the supplier shall provide information for consumer complaint remedies which shall inform the consumer of, among other things, whether an informal dispute settlement mechanism has been established by the supplier and how the consumer may avail himself or herself of such mechanism.
(b) If a supplier has established an informal dispute settlement mechanism, such mechanism shall provide, at a minimum, the following:
(i) That the arbitrators and the consumers who request arbitration are given a written copy of the provisions of this article together with the notice set forth below entitled "New Farm Equipment Bill of Rights" and that the arbitrators participating in such mechanism are trained in arbitration and are familiar with the provisions of this article;
(ii) That the consumers, upon request, are given an opportunity to make an oral presentation to the arbitrator; and
(iii) That the rights and procedures used in the mechanism comply with federal regulations promulgated by the federal trade commission relating to informal dispute settlement mechanisms.
(c) Each consumer shall have the option of submitting any dispute arising under this section, upon the payment of a prescribed filing fee, to an alternate arbitration mechanism established pursuant to regulations promulgated hereunder by the state attorney general. Upon application of the consumer and payment of the filing fee, all suppliers shall submit to such alternate arbitration, and shall pay a fee established pursuant to regulations of the attorney general. Such alternate arbitration shall be conducted by a professional arbitrator or arbitration firm appointed by the state attorney general. Such mechanism shall insure the personal objectivity of its arbitrators and the right of each party to present its case, to be in attendance during any presentation made by the other party and to rebut and refute such presentation. In all other respects, such alternate arbitration mechanism shall be governed by article seventy-five of the civil practice law and rules.
(d) A supplier shall have up to thirty days from the date the consumer notifies the supplier of his or her acceptance of the arbitrator's decision to comply with the terms of that decision. Failure to comply with the thirty-day limitation shall also entitle the consumer to recover a fee of twenty-five dollars a day for each business day of noncompliance up to five hundred dollars. Provided, however, that nothing contained in this paragraph shall impose any liability on a supplier where a delay beyond the thirty23 day period is attributable to a consumer who has requested replacement farm equipment built to order or with options that are not comparable to the farm equipment being replaced or otherwise made compliance impossible within said period. In no event shall a consumer who has resorted to an informal dispute settlement mechanism be precluded from seeking the rights or remedies available by law.
(e) A court may award reasonable attorney's fees to a prevailing plaintiff or to a consumer who prevails in any judicial action or proceeding arising out of an arbitration proceeding held pursuant to paragraph (c) of this subdivision. In the event a prevailing plaintiff is required to retain the services of an attorney to enforce collection of an award granted pursuant to this section, the court may assess against the supplier reasonable attorney's fees for services rendered to enforce collection of such award.
(f) Any action brought pursuant to this section shall be commenced within twenty-four months of the date of original delivery of the farm equipment to the consumer.
(g) It shall be presumed that a reasonable number of attempts have been undertaken to conform the farm equipment to the applicable express warranties, if:
(i) the same nonconformity, defect or condition has been subject to repair four times by the supplier, or its authorized dealers and such nonconformity continues to exist; or
(ii) the farm equipment is out of service by reason of repair of one or more nonconformities by the supplier or its dealer for a cumulative total of thirty calendar days during the warranty period.
(h) The term of an express warranty, the one year warranty period and the thirty day out of service period shall be extended by any reasonable time during which repair services are not available to the consumer for reasons which shall include war, terrorist attack, pestilence, invasion or strike, fire, flood or other natural disaster or unforeseen and unanticipated extraordinary circumstances.
§ 697-b. Affirmative defenses.
It shall be an affirmative defense to claim under this section that:
(a) the nonconformity, defect or condition does not substantially impair the value, use or safety of the equipment;
(b) the nonconformity, defect or condition is the result of abuse, neglect or unauthorized modifications or alterations of the farm equipment;
(c) a claim by the consumer was not filed in a timely manner; or
(d) any other affirmative defense allowed by law.
§ 697-c. Cumulative remedies; prohibition against waiver.
The warranty under this article shall be in addition to and not in derogation of all other rights and privileges which such consumer may have under any other law or instrument. Waiver of any rights by the buyer under this article shall be deemed contrary to public policy and shall be unenforceable and void. § 697-d. New farm equipment bill of rights. A supplier shall provide the following notice, entitled "New Farm Equipment Bill of Rights" along with a written copy of the provisions of this article, to its authorized dealers in this state, and the dealer shall provide such bill of rights to each consumer at the time of purchase or lease of farm equipment. Such notice shall be printed in conspicuous ten-point bold face type.
NEW FARM EQUIPMENT BILL OF RIGHTS
(1) IN ADDITION TO ANY WARRANTIES PROVIDED FOR YOUR FARM EQUIPMENT, YOUR NEW FARM EQUIPMENT, PURCHASED WITHIN OR OUTSIDE OF THIS STATE, IS WARRANTED AGAINST ALL MATERIAL DEFECTS FOR ONE YEAR.
(2) YOU MUST REPORT ANY PROBLEMS TO THE WARRANTOR OR ITS DEALER IN WRITING WITHIN THE WARRANTY PERIOD. ALTHOUGH, IF IN THE LAST THIRTY DAYS OF THE WARRANTY, YOU ARE ONLY ABLE TO PROVIDE A VERBAL NOTICE, YOU WILL HAVE UP TO THIRTY DAYS AFTER THE EXPIRATION OF THE WARRANTY TO PROVIDE A WRITTEN NOTICE.
(3) A WARRANTOR OR A DEALER MAY NOT CHARGE FOR THE PARTS OR LABOR INVOLVED IN THE REPAIR OF THE DEFECT WITHIN THE WARRANTY PERIOD.
(4) IF THE SAME PROBLEM CANNOT BE REPAIRED AFTER FOUR ATTEMPTS DURING THE WARRANTY PERIOD; OR IF YOUR EQUIPMENT IS OUT OF SERVICE TO REPAIR A PROBLEM FOR A TOTAL OF THIRTY DAYS DURING THE WARRANTY PERIOD; OR IF THE SUPPLIER OR ITS DEALER REFUSES TO REPAIR A SUBSTANTIAL DEFECT OR CONDITION WITHIN TWENTY DAYS OF RECEIPT OF WRITTEN NOTICE SENT BY YOU TO THE SUPPLIER; THEN YOU MAY BE ENTITLED, AT YOUR OPTION, TO EITHER COMPARABLE FARM EQUIPMENT OR A REFUND OF YOUR PURCHASE PRICE FROM THE WARRANTOR, MINUS A USE ALLOWANCE.
(5) A WARRANTOR MAY DENY LIABILITY IF THE PROBLEM IS CAUSED BY ABUSE, NEGLECT, OR UNAUTHORIZED MODIFICATIONS OF THE EQUIPMENT.
(6) A WARRANTOR MAY REFUSE TO EXCHANGE COMPARABLE EQUIPMENT OR REFUND YOUR PURCHASE PRICE IF THE PROBLEM DOES NOT SUBSTANTIALLY IMPAIR THE VALUE, SAFETY OR USE OF YOUR FARM EQUIPMENT.
(7) IF THE WARRANTOR DOES NOT HAVE AN ARBITRATION PROCEDURE, YOU MAY RESORT TO ANY REMEDY BY LAW AND MAY BE ENTITLED TO YOUR ATTORNEY'S FEES IF YOU PREVAIL. (8) NO CONTRACT OR AGREEMENT CAN VOID ANY OF THESE RIGHTS.
(9) AS AN ALTERNATIVE TO THE ARBITRATION PROCEDURE MADE AVAILABLE THROUGH THE WARRANTOR, YOU MAY INSTEAD CHOOSE TO SUBMIT YOUR CLAIM TO AN INDEPENDENT ARBITRATOR, APPROVED BY THE ATTORNEY GENERAL. YOU WILL HAVE TO PAY A FEE FOR SUCH AN ARBITRATION. CONTACT YOUR LOCAL CONSUMER OFFICE OR ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE TO FIND OUT HOW TO ARRANGE FOR INDEPENDENT ARBITRATION.</p>
Pursuant to General Business Law, Article 33-B, section 697-a
Title 13 NYCRR Chap. VIII Part 303
Consumer Warranty on Farm Equipment – Arbitration Program Regulations
303.3 Appointment of Administrator
303.4 Consumer’s Request for Arbitration
303.5 Filing Date
303.6 Notice to the Supplier
303.7 Assignment of Arbitrator
303.8 Scheduling of Arbitration Hearing
303.10 Request for Additional Information or Documents
303.11 Representation by Counsel or Third Party
303.13 Hearing Procedure
303.14 Hearing on Documents Only
303.16 Withdrawal or Settlement Prior to Decision
303.18 Record keeping
303.19 Miscellaneous Provisions
Section 303.1 Purpose
(a) These regulations are promulgated pursuant to General Business Law
(“GBL”), Article 33-B, section 697-a, added by chapter 662 of the Laws of 2005 as amended by
Chapter 706 of the Laws of 2006. They set forth the procedures for the operation of an alternative
arbitration mechanism (the “Program”) as required by GBL section 697-a(c).
(b) These regulations are designed to promote the independent, speedy,
efficient and fair disposition of disputes concerning defective farm equipment.
Section 303.2 Definitions
(a) Unless otherwise stated, terms used in these regulations are as defined in
GBL section 697.
(b) The term “Administrator” shall mean a professional arbitration firm or
individual appointed by the Attorney General to administer the Program.
Section 303.3 Appointment of Administrator
(a) The Attorney General shall appoint an Administrator or Administrators to
a definite term not to exceed two years. The term shall be renewable.
(b) The following criteria shall be considered in the selection of an
Administrator: capability, objectivity, non-affiliation with a supplier’s arbitration program,
reliability, experience, financial stability, extent of geographic coverage, and fee structure.
(c) The Attorney General shall give appropriate public notice at least 60 days
prior to the expiration of an Administrator’s term inviting any interested qualified party to apply
in writing for the position of Administrator within 30 days from the date of the public notice.
(d) Upon a vacancy occurring prior to the expiration of an Administrator’s
term, the time periods in subdivision (c) shall not apply and the Attorney General shall take
appropriate steps to assure the continued administration of the Program.
Section 303.4 Consumer’s Request for Arbitration
(a) The Attorney General shall prescribe and make available “Request for
Arbitration” forms for GBL Article 33-B claims. To apply for arbitration under the Program, a
consumer shall obtain, complete, and submit the appropriate form to the Attorney General.
(b) Those consumers wishing a hearing on documents only shall so indicate on
(c) The consumer shall indicate on the form his/her choice of remedy (i.e.,
either refund or comparable replacement equipment), in the event the arbitrator rules in favor of
the consumer. Such choice shall be followed by the arbitrator unless the consumer advises the
Administrator in writing of a change in his/her choice of remedy prior to the arbitrator’s rendering
of a decision.
(d) Upon receipt, the Attorney General shall date-stamp and assign a case
number to the form.
(e) The Attorney General shall review the submitted form for completeness and
eligibility and shall either accept it or reject it.
(f) If the form is rejected by the Attorney General, the Attorney General shall
promptly return the form, notifying the consumer in writing of the reason(s) for the rejection and,
where possible, inviting the consumer to correct the deficiencies.
(g) If the form is accepted by the Attorney General, he shall refer it to the
Administrator for processing. The Attorney General shall promptly notify the consumer in writing
of the acceptance of the form and of its referral to the Administrator. The Attorney General shall
prescribe a filing fee and an arbitration fee to be paid by the consumer and the supplier,
respectively. Such notice shall also advise the consumer to pay the prescribed filing fee directly to
(h) If, after 30 days from the date of the notice of acceptance, the Administrator
fails to receive the prescribed filing fee, the Administrator shall promptly advise the consumer in
writing that unless such fee is received within 60 days from the date of the first notice, the form
will be returned and the case marked closed. After such time, if the consumer wishes to pursue a
claim under the Program, (s)he must submit a new form to the Attorney General.
(i) Participation in any informal dispute resolution mechanism that is not
binding on the consumer shall not affect the eligibility of a consumer to participate in the Program.
Section 303.5 Filing Date
On the day the Administrator receives the prescribed filing fee, the
Administrator shall date stamp the “Request for Arbitration” form. Such date shall be considered
the “filing date”.
Section 303.6 Notice to the Supplier
(a) Each supplier of farm equipment sold to a New York consumer shall notify
the Attorney General in writing, within 10 days after the effective date of these regulations, of the
name, address and telephone number of the person designated to receive notices under the GBL
Article 33-B Program. Such information shall be presumed correct unless updated by the supplier.
(b) Within 5 days of the filing date, the Administrator shall send the supplier’s
designee a notice that a Request for Arbitration has been filed by the consumer and that the supplier
must remit the prescribed arbitration fee to the Administrator within 10 days from the date of
mailing by the Administrator. The date the prescribed arbitration fee is received by the
Administrator is considered the “commencement date.”
(c) Within 5 days of the “commencement date,” the Administrator shall send
the supplier’s designee a copy of the consumer’s completed Request for Arbitration form along
with a notice that it may respond in writing. Such response shall be sent in triplicate, within 15
days of the commencement date, to the Administrator, who shall promptly forward one copy to
(d) If, after 10 days from the date of mailing of the first notice to the supplier
requesting payment of the prescribed arbitration fee, the Administrator fails to receive such
prescribed fee, the Administrator shall promptly advise the supplier in writing that unless such fee
is received within 20 days from the date of the first notice, the Attorney General’s Office will be
notified of the supplier’s non-compliance. In the event that the Administrator fails to receive the
prescribed arbitration fee from the supplier within 20 days of the first notice, it shall promptly
notify the Attorney General’s Office in writing of such non-compliance.
Section 303.7 Assignment of Arbitrator
(a) After the commencement date, the Administrator shall assign an arbitrator
to hear and decide the case. Notice of assignment shall be mailed to the arbitrator and the parties
along with a copy of these regulations and GBL Article 33-B.
(b) The arbitrator assigned shall not have any bias, any financial or personal
interest in the outcome of the hearing, or any current connection to the sale, distribution or
manufacture of farm equipment.
(c) Upon a finding by the Administrator, at any stage of the process, of grounds
to disqualify the arbitrator, the Administrator shall dismiss the arbitrator and assign another
arbitrator to the case.
(d) If any arbitrator should resign, die, withdraw or be unable to perform the
duties of his/her position, the Administrator shall assign another arbitrator to the case and the
period to render a decision shall be extended accordingly.
(e) Arbitrators shall undergo training established by the Administrator and the
Attorney General. This training shall include procedural techniques, the duties and responsibilities
of arbitrators under the Programs, and the substantive provisions of GBL Article 33-B.
Section 303.8 Scheduling of Arbitration Hearings
(a) The arbitration shall be conducted as an oral hearing unless the consumer
has requested, on the “Request for Arbitration” form, a hearing on documents only and both parties
agree to a documents only hearing; provided, however, that the parties may mutually agree in
writing to change the mode of hearing. Upon such change, the parties shall notify the Administrator
who shall comply with the request and, where necessary, such request shall waive the 40 day limit
in which a decision must be rendered.
(b) The consumer may respond in writing to the supplier’s submission within
25 days of the commencement date. Such response shall be sent in triplicate to the Administrator,
who shall promptly forward a copy to the supplier.
(c) An oral hearing, where appropriate, shall be scheduled no later than 35 days
from the commencement date, unless a later date is agreed to by both parties. The Administrator
shall notify both parties of the date, time and place of the hearing at least 8 days prior to its
(d) Hearings shall be scheduled to accommodate, where possible, time-of-day
needs of the consumer and the supplier, including evening and weekend hours.
(e) Hearings shall also be scheduled to accommodate geographic needs of the
consumer. Regular hearing sites shall be established at locations designated by the Administrator.
No hearing site established by the Administrator shall be discontinued without the approval of the
Attorney General. In addition, where a regular site is more than 100 miles from the consumer’s
residence, a hearing must be scheduled at the request of the consumer at a location designated by
the Administrator within 100 miles of the consumer’s residence.
(f) In unusual circumstances, a party may present its case by telephone,
provided that adequate advance notice is given to the Administrator and to the other party. In such
cases, the arbitrator and both parties shall be included and the party requesting the telephonic
hearing shall pay all costs associated therewith.
Section 303.9 Adjournments
Either party may make a request to reschedule the hearing. Except in
unusual circumstances, such request shall be made to the Administrator orally or in writing at least
two business days prior to the hearing date. Upon a finding of good cause, the arbitrator may
reschedule the hearing. In unusual circumstances, the arbitrator may reschedule the hearing at any
time prior to its commencement.
Section 303.10 Request for Additional Information or Documents
(a) A party, by application in writing to the Administrator, may request the
arbitrator to direct the other party to produce any documents or information. The arbitrator shall,
upon receiving such request, or on his or her own initiative, direct the production of documents or
information which she or he believes will reasonably assist a party in presenting his or her case or
assist the arbitrator in deciding the case. The arbitrator’s direction for the production of documents
and information shall allow a reasonable time for the gathering and production of such documents
(b) All documents and information forwarded in compliance with the
arbitrator’s direction shall be legible and received no later than three business days prior to the
date of the hearing. Each party shall bear its own photocopying costs.
(c) Upon failure of a party to comply with the arbitrator’s direction to produce
documents and/or information, the arbitrator may draw a negative inference concerning any issue
involving such documents or information.
(d) The term “documents” in this section shall include, but not be limited to,
relevant supplier’s service bulletins, dealer work orders, diagnoses, bills, and all communications
relating to the consumer’s claim.
(e) At the request of either party or on his or her own initiative, the arbitrator,
when she or he believes it appropriate, may subpoena any witnesses to appear or documents to be
presented at the hearing.
Section 303.11 Representation by Counsel or Third Party
Any party may be represented by counsel or assisted by any third party.
Section 303.12 Interpreters
Any party wishing an interpreter shall make the necessary arrangements and
assume the costs for such service.
Section 303.13 Hearing Procedure
(a) The conduct of the hearing shall afford each party a full an equal
opportunity to present his/her case.
(b) The arbitrator shall administer an oath or affirmation to each individual who
(c) Formal rules of evidence shall not apply; the parties may introduce any
(d) The arbitrator shall receive in evidence a decision rendered in a previous
arbitration which was not binding on the consumer and give it such weight as the arbitrator deems
(e) The arbitrator shall receive relevant evidence of witnesses by affidavit, and
such affidavits shall be given such weight as the arbitrator deems appropriate.
(f) The arbitrator shall have discretion to examine or ride in the consumer’s
equipment. Both parties shall be afforded the opportunity to be present and accompany the
arbitrator on any such examination or ride.
(g) The consumer shall first present evidence in support of his/her claim, and
the supplier shall then present its evidence. Each party may question the witnesses called by the
other. The arbitrator may question any party or witness at any time during the hearing.
(h) The arbitrator shall maintain decorum at the hearing.
(i) The arbitrator may request additional evidence after the closing the hearing.
All such evidence shall be submitted to the Administrator for transmission to the arbitrator and the
Section 303.14 Hearing on Documents Only
If the hearing is on documents only, all documents shall be submitted to the
Administrator no later than 30 days from the commencement date. The arbitrator shall render a
timely decision based on all documents submitted.
Section 303.15 Defaults
(a) Upon the failure of a party to appear at an oral hearing, the arbitrator shall
nevertheless conduct the hearing and render a timely decision based on the evidence presented and
documents contained in the file.
(b) If neither party appears at the hearing, the arbitrator shall return the case to
the Administrator who shall close it and so notify the parties.
(c) In a documents-only hearing, where the supplier fails to respond to the
claim, the arbitrator shall render a decision based upon the documents contained in the file.
Section 303.16 Withdrawal or Settlement Prior to Decision
(a) A consumer may withdraw his/her request for arbitration at any time prior
to decision. If the Administrator is notified by the consumer of his/her request to withdraw the
claim within seven business days of the commencement date, the Administrator shall refund the
filing fee to the consumer and the arbitration fee to the supplier.
(b) If the parties agree to a settlement more than seven business days after the
commencement date but prior to the issuance of a decision, they shall notify the Administrator in
writing of the terms of the settlement. Upon the request of the parties, the arbitrator shall issue a
decision reflecting the settlement.
Section 303.17 The Decision
(a) The arbitrator shall render a decision within 40 days from the
commencement date which shall be in writing on a form prescribed by the Administrator and
approved by the Attorney General. The decision shall be dated and signed by the arbitrator. An
electronic signature authorized by the arbitrator shall be deemed a valid signature.
(b) In his/her decision, the arbitrator shall determine whether the consumer
qualifies for relief pursuant to GBL section 697-a. If the arbitrator finds that the consumer
qualifies, (s)he shall award the specific remedies prescribed by the statute.
(c) The decision shall specify the monetary award where applicable. A
calculation of the amount, in accordance with GBL section 697-a shall be included in the decision.
The decision shall also award the prescribed filing fee to a successful consumer.
(d) The decision shall, where applicable, require that any action required by the
supplier be completed within 30 days from the date the Administrator notifies the supplier of the
(e) The Administrator shall review the decision for technical completeness and
accuracy and advise the arbitrator of any suggested technical corrections, such as computational,
typographical or other minor corrections. Such changes shall be made only with the consent of the
(f) After review, the Administrator shall, within 45 days of the commencement
date, mail a copy of the final decision to both parties, the arbitrator, and the Attorney General. The
date of mailing to the parties shall be date-stamped by the Administrator on the decision as the
date of issuance.
(g) Failure to mail the decision to the parties within the specified time period
or failure to hold the hearing within the prescribed time shall not invalidate the decision.
(h) The arbitrator’s decision is binding on both parties and is final, subject only
to judicial review pursuant to CPLR, Article 75. The decision shall include a statement to this
Section 303.18 Record keeping
(a) The Administrator shall keep all records pertaining to each arbitration for a
period of at least two years and shall make the records of a particular arbitration available for
inspection upon written request by a party to that arbitration, and shall make records of all
arbitrations available to the Attorney General upon written request.
(b) The Administrator shall maintain records and statistics for the Program.
Section 303.19 Miscellaneous Provisions
(a) All communications between the parties and the arbitrator, other than at oral
hearings, shall be directed to the Administrator.
(b) If any provision of these regulations or the application of such provision to
any persons or circumstances shall be held invalid, the validity of the remainder of these
regulations and the applicability of such provision to other persons or circumstances shall not be