Taking delivery of a new car, whether it is the first one or not is exciting. The excitement and thrill rapidly wears off if the car fails to perform as you expected. If the car turns out to be a lemon, what recourse do you have as the consumer?
Every state has a lemon law for car, they may be a little different but they all have been enacted to give the consumer certain recourse if it has a significant problem that cannot be repaired. The fault must be one that has a detrimental impact on the future resale value of the car, has an impact on the normal function of the vehicle or is life-threatening. The problem areas normally include the engine, transmission, brakes and running gear. Needless to say there are other things that can go wrong with a car that certainly are annoying, but if they don’t meet these three simple criteria the car will not be considered a lemon.
What to do if your car is a lemon:
No one knows on the date of delivery of their new car if it will turn out to be a lemon. It is important for every new car buyer to keep careful records of any repairs that are made, the dates the car is not available for use and all correspondence between the buyer, the dealer and the manufacturer. This is the type of supporting date that will become very important in the event there is a future dispute.
Once you know you have a lemon time becomes of the essence. Under the lemon laws of all states the manufacturer is granted an opportunity to fix the problem, depending on the jurisdiction the manufacturer will be given three or four tries which must happen within a year of the first attempt. Most states also consider the vehicle to be a lemon if it has been off the road for repair for a total of 30 days.
Is an attorney necessary?
It may not be mandatory to have an attorney but the lemon law for car in all states is complex and having a seasoned attorney can often make the difference between success and failure in your attempt to get satisfaction. Normally the attorney will work with you on contingency, getting the manufacturer of the lemon to pay his or her professional fees.
Every state has a lemon law for car problems and as a consumer you have recourse in the event your car is a lemon. For details on the laws in your state you are invited to visit YourLemonLawRights.com, a service of Krohn & Moss, Consumer Law Center.
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