You have worked out to carve out your part of the auto sales market. You found the right place to set up a lot, you worked through the zoning requirements and you got the stock in front of potential customers. So it can feel like all the results of this hard work can add up to nothing if someone at different plans for dealerships.
Florida gives auto dealers the right to protest infringement on their place in the market. This can happen when manufacturers choose to open or reopen a dealership that makes the same substantial offering to the public. Those actions may violate Florida law if they threaten the health of your business and the success of your employees.
Any notice of the right to protest must include the details that led to the objection. This may be the name and location of a planned or licensed dealership within the same county or area of a previously existing one. A person may need to argue why a planned or new dealership would directly infringe on their business, which may require evidence of traffic patterns, recent sales and other information.
The Florida Department of Motor Vehicles (DMW) is not responsible for verifying much of this information. Any dispute between parties may need to be resolved with an administrative hearing.
An auto dealer considering invoking the right to protest may consult an attorney about the details of the required filings. Legal representation can help work out if this is the best way to address a new and possibly illegal challenge to their business.