New Car Lease Laws

Reader question:

Listen, I want to lease a car but I need to know what are the laws for a new car lease? I want to make sure I’m going with a good company.


Good question, Julia.

Like car insurance companies and car lots and pretty much any business that exchanges goods and services for money, leasing companies for new car leases are bound by laws. These laws can vary from state to state, but for the most part they are pretty steady. Here is an overview of the laws by which car lease companies are bound.

  • Statement of cost. There cannot be such a thing as completely hidden costs in the car lease business. Before you even sign your name on the lease, they must provide you with details in writing of everything, down to the last penny, that you have to pay over the term of the lease, as well as everything that you have to pay right away.
  • Length. The leasing company has to give you information about the number of payments you will have and how much each payment will come out to, as well as how it all adds up to the total amount of the lease.
  • What they want you to do. If you’re required to do anything, like get a certain kind of insurance, to keep with the lease contract, they have to inform you.
  • Warranty. How long does it last? What does it cover? Who services the vehicle?
  • Roughing it up. What kind of wear and tear does the leasing company consider normal, and what kind will you have to pay for when you give it back? They have to tell you.
  • Canceling your lease. If the company is able to cancel your lease and take the car back for any reason, you have to be told. Can you lose the car for not having insurance? For non payment?
  • If you are leasing a car that you have the option to buy at the end of the term of lease, the company has to tell you what the conditions are under which you can buy it and how much it will cost.


Fashun Guadarrama.

About the Author:

Austin Davis, consumer car repair advocate. "Hi there! I love to help people solve their car repair problems and I hope my site was helpful to you today. Thank you for stopping by."