Right To Repair Laws: What You Need To Know

Have you ever damaged your phone or laptop and struggled to fix it? In many cases, when consumers encounter barriers to repairing the products they already own, that item is tossed and contributes to waste.

As states across the US work to pass legislation to provide consumers and independent repairers with access to parts, tools, and information to fix broken products, how will these laws affect manufacturers? Which products or devices might be introduced under a right to repair law? Let’s examine the impact of future right to repair legislation and present considerations for manufacturers.

What Does the Legislation Cover?

Right to repair legislation focuses on the concept that any product should be able to be fixed either by the owner or with the help of a technician. Manufactured goods that use computer chips tend to be harder to repair. With these laws in place, consumers will have an easier time fixing various devices by using information or tools provided by the manufacturer.

The legislation is different from state to state. So far, in 2023, 30 states have implemented some form of right to repair legislation. While specific details and provisions of these laws can vary, below are a few examples of consumer products current and future legislation may impact:

What Are The Concerns?

To fix many products on the market, independent repairers or product owners would need access to a company’s repair information, software, or even intellectual property. Opposers of this legislation have concerns about sharing certain information as it could create security, privacy, and piracy risks.

How Will This Legislation Impact Manufacturers?

Depending on the industry, some manufacturers may feel the effect of certain right to repair laws sooner than others. Review the list of right to repair legislation impacts and the recommended actions to consider.

Anticipated Impact: Increased Availability of Repair Information

Consideration: Manufacturers should provide comprehensive and standardized access to repair manuals, diagnostic tools, and software to independent repair shops and customers. For consumer sharing, organizations should consider developing and offering user-friendly customer interfaces and portals for accessing repair information and resources. These customer interfaces will help increase operational efficiency for customer advocacy functions and support assisted-channel support needs.

Anticipated Impact: Parts Availability and Affordability

Consideration: To prepare, manufacturers might create a branded parts and accessories sales channel for end customers and independent repair businesses. To increase availability and affordability, organizations should consider partnerships and reseller sales channels with independent repair networks to improve awareness, availability, and affordability of genuine replacement parts.

Anticipated Impact: Consumer Education and Awareness

Consideration: Organizations should begin to leverage existing unassisted and assisted channels to educate customers about their rights and options for repairing their products. Inform customers about the potential risks and benefits of using authorized repair services (i.e., dealerships) versus independent repair options.

Anticipated Impact: Regulatory and Security Compliance

Consideration: Manufacturers should prioritize the audit and implementation of robust security measures to protect vehicle systems and customer data while establishing internal processes and guidelines to ensure compliance with specific regulations.

It’s About the Customer Experience

The proactive considerations mentioned above can help manufacturers adapt to future right to repair legislation while maintaining customer satisfaction, upholding data security, and fostering collaboration within the repair ecosystem. Current and future right to repair legislation requires that manufacturers review and make changes to their existing channel, data, and regulatory compliance strategies. Right to repair is another example of the importance of Customer Experience Management (CEM) solutions in stitching together customer-facing, middle, and back-office functions in a cost-effective and future-proof manner.

For manufacturers looking for a B2B2C solution to unify their network, learn more about Unified Reseller Network, Blue Acorn iCi’s best-in-class solution built on Adobe Experience Cloud, or contact us for more information.

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