New York Gov. Kathy Hochul has signed the Digital Fair Repair Act (S4104-A/A7006-B) into law, making New York the first state to guarantee the right to repair, protecting consumers from anticompetitive efforts to limit repair. The New York State Senate approved the act in June by a vote of 145-1.
The Digital Fair Repair Act requires original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to make diagnostic and repair information for digital electronic parts and equipment available to independent repair providers and consumers if such parts and repair information are also available to OEM-authorized repair providers and servicers. According to a news release from Gov. Hochul’s website, the act aims to protect consumers and open the digital repair market to competition.
“As technology and smart devices become increasingly essential to our daily lives, consumers should be able to easily fix the devices they rely on in a timely fashion,” Gov. Hochul says. “This legislation will empower consumers with better options to repair their devices, thereby maximizing the lifespan of their devices, saving money and reducing electronic waste.”
New York is the first state to require diagnostic and repair information for digital electronic parts and equipment from OEMs, according to the announcement on Gov. Hochul’s website.
“This new Right to Repair law, the first of its kind in the United States, will not only provide greater choice and affordability for consumers if they choose to repair their electronic devices but also significantly reduce the amount of electronic waste while providing more opportunities for small businesses,” says New York State Sen. Neil Breslin.
The legislation had originally included provisions for agricultural equipment, public service equipment and home appliances; however, the scope of the legislation had been narrowed last year to focus only on devices such as computers, phones and tablets.
“While this new law represents a difficult compromise after a vigorous campaign against the right to repair by big tech, I am proud that consumers and small businesses prevailed in the end,” says New York Assemblymember Patricia Fahy. “We are hopeful this will spur other states into action, galvanize the effort to enact a right to repair law at the national level, and that all Americans will eventually enjoy a comprehensive and real ‘right to repair’.”