NY Assemblymember Patricia Fahy introduced Assembly Bill 8955 on Jan. 30, which would amend New York’s Digital Fair Repair Act. The bill would modify the definition of an OEM, backdate the manufacture date when hardware must comply with the right to repair law by two more years and repeal some product exclusions.
The current law, passed in 2022, required OEMs to make diagnostic and repair information for digital electronic parts and equipment available to independent repair providers and consumers, but the bill also had a broad range of exemptions and only applied to devices manufactured after July 1, 2023.
AB 8955 changes the covered product manufacture date to July 1, 2021, instead of July 1, 2023, and removes the exemptions for business-to-business and business-to-government equipment. It also adds home appliances to the list of covered equipment. It also specifies that an OEM who “offers the services of diagnosis, maintenance, or repair of its own digital electronic equipment shall be considered an authorized repair provider with respect to such equipment.”
The new bill will “remove ambiguities in the current law and make enforcement more practical for manufacturers as well as buyers,” said Gay Gordon Byrne of Repair.org “For example, is a business-class desktop a consumer purchase when made through Amazon? Or only if the desktop buyer went through the OEM sales channel? In our experience, OEMS prefer to know how to comply rather than guessing.”
In addition, the “basic premise of ownership is also restored in A8955,” Gordon-Byrne added.
“The type of buyer is irrelevant in all other laws. A business can own a car and still get it fixed by an independent mechanic, or use a dealership or even staff and support a private repair facility,” she said.
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