WSR 09-12-109



[ Filed June 2, 2009, 2:13 p.m. ]

     Subject of Possible Rule Making: The attorney general has adopted rules regarding the New Motor Vehicle Warranties Act, chapter 19.118 RCW, generally known as the "Lemon Law," in 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1992, 1996, 2000, and 2002.

     The attorney general is considering amending chapter 44-10 WAC to reflect statutory changes enacted resulting from the passage of SHB 1215, chapter 351, Laws of 2009.

     The attorney general will consider amending the following rules:

     Arbitration procedures in the identified sections of chapter 19.118 RCW: WAC 44-10-031(1), update a citation to reflect chapter 19.118 RCW as amended; 44-10-040 (1), (2), (3), update to reflect new statutory mandates regarding review and acceptance or rejection of consumer requests for arbitration; 44-10-050 (1), (2), (3), (4), update to reflect new statutory mandates regarding assignment of requests for arbitration to the new motor vehicle arbitration board; 44-10-060 (1), (2), (3), update to reflect new statutory mandates regarding requests for special master arbitrator review of issues; 44-10-100(1), update to reflect new statutory mandates regarding requests for subpoenas; and 44-10-200 (1)(d), (3)(a), (b), (c), (e), (g), update to reflect new statutory mandates regarding issuance of arbitration decisions; updating motor home manufacturer distribution of liability.

     New requirement for manufacturers to obtain title to certain reacquired defective new motor vehicles: WAC 44-10-223, amend to establish procedures and provide directions for notification of compliance with title requirements for manufacturers reacquiring certain defective vehicles.

     The rule-making process will include development of a rule regarding new mandates for disclosure imposed on new motor vehicle dealers engaging in the post-manufacturing modification of new motor vehicles at the request of a consumer at the time of sale or lease of a new motor vehicle.

     The attorney general will evaluate all sections to consider necessary program updates, which may include the proposal of new rules modifying the arbitration process and procedures for consumer and manufacturer disputes submitted to the attorney general pursuant to chapter 19.118 RCW.

     Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 19.118.080(2), 19.118.061.

     Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: Chapter 44-10 WAC must be amended to reflect changes to certain statutory provisions effective July 23, 2009, relating to: (1) Arbitration procedures; (2) establishment of new procedures and directions for disclosures for dealer modifications to new motor vehicles; and (3) title requirements imposed on manufacturers upon reacquiring certain new motor vehicles.

     Amended rules will assist:

The attorney general, new motor vehicle arbitration board, consumers, manufacturers, and other persons involved in arbitrations by establishing simplified arbitration processes and procedures consistent with chapter 19.118 RCW as amended.
Manufacturers by establishing clear directions and a process by which the attorney general can be notified of compliance with new requirements to obtain title to certain manufacturer reacquired defective vehicles consistent with chapter 19.118 RCW as amended.
Manufacturers and post-manufacturing modifiers of new motor vehicles, including new motor vehicle dealers, by establishing directions and procedures applying new statutory provisions relating to warranty obligations and disclosures consistent with chapter 19.118 RCW as amended.

     Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: The attorney general's office has sole enforcement and administrative authority under the statute. However, the department of licensing collects and processes the arbitration fees and creates the procedures for manufacturers to apply for and obtain title to certain reacquired defective vehicles.

     The collection of arbitration fees and regulation of title procedures by the department of licensing will not be the subject of this rule making.

     All proposed rules relating in any way to a manufacturer's compliance with requirement to obtain title to certain reacquired defective vehicles will be coordinated with the department of licensing, including requesting a review and comments.

     Process for Developing New Rule: The attorney general's office will have discussions and exchange drafts of proposed rules with impacted stakeholders including new motor vehicle manufacturers and new motor vehicle dealers through their respective industry associations, consumers, and private attorneys participating in the arbitration process in the last twenty-four months.

     Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication by sending comments or suggestions to Paul N. Corning, Lemon Law Administrator, 800 Fifth Avenue, Suite 2000, Seattle, WA 98104, phone/voicemail (206) 464-6372, fax Attn: Paul N. Corning at (206) 464-6451, e-mail at Requests for invitations to a webinar to be scheduled during the CR-101 comment period should be sent to

June 1, 2009

Rob McKenna

Attorney General

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