Lemon Law Information
What is the "Lemon Law"?
Lemon Laws laws are enacted by the states to give legal recourse to purchasers of defective automobiles. Typically, within a short period of time after purchasing or leasing a new automobile, if a consumer has had their vehicle repaired a certain number of times, or if the vehicle has been out of service for repair for a certain amount of time, then the consumer is entitled to have the vehicle repurchased or replaced by the manufacturer.
What do I stand to gain by asserting a claim under the Lemon Law?
Depending upon how many repairs you have, or how many days the vehicle has been out for repair, you may possibly be entitled to a repurchase of your vehicle, a replacement vehicle, or monetary compensation. In those cases where you keep the vehicle and are compensated monetarily, we can often negotiate an extended warranty as well.
How many repairs or days out of service do I need to establish a viable Lemon Law case?
Each state Lemon Law has different requirements for the number of repairs or days out of service necessary to establish a claim.
Who is the Defendant in a Lemon Law case?
Although you have had your vehicle repaired at the dealership, it is actually the manufacturer of your vehicle who is responsible under the various state Lemon Laws.
What is the process for asserting a Lemon Law claim?
The first step is to determine whether or not you have a viable claim under your state's Lemon Law. You can click on the Free Case Evaluation at the bottom of this page, or call us at 1 (443) 845-2428 so that we can evaluate your case.
If you have a viable case and you agree to allow us to represent you, then our first step is to issue a demand letter to your vehicle's manufacturer. Most of our cases are resolved by directly negotiating a settlement in this manner.
If you are unable to negotiate a settlement of your matter, then the next step may be a lawsuit or arbitration. We will discuss these options with you, detailing their pros and cons.
What other laws protect my rights?
Besides the various state Lemon Laws, there is another important law that protects the rights of automobile owners. The Magnusson Moss Warranty Act is a Federal Law that applies broadly to most consumer goods that come with an express warranty. This law takes into account repairs that occur throughout the entire period of the manufacturer's warranty. The various state Lemon Laws, by way of comparison, often take into account repairs that occur with the first 10,000-18,000 miles. In many instances where a state lemon law will not apply because of the mileage on the vehicle when the repairs occurred, the Magnusson Moss Warranty Act can be used to obtain recourse against the manufacturer.
There may be other state specific laws that can be used under some circumstances.
Are there any time limits for bringing a Lemon Law case?
The time limit for bringing a case under the Lemon Law, known as the "statute of limitations" varies by state. Usually the time limit begins running on the date that you purchased or leased your vehicle, although that can vary. As a practical matter, it's always best to address legal issues sooner rather than later, as evidence can be lost or grow "stale" over time, and moreover, a claim brought late can give rise to an inference that the problems with your vehicle did not cause undue hardship at the time they were occurring.
What if my state's Lemon Law requires 4 repairs within the first 18,000 miles, and I have only had 3 repairs?
You should not assume that you do not have recourse if you are unable to show enough repairs under your reading of the law. First, there are other laws besides the state Lemon Laws that we rely on to obtain compensation for you. Second, we find that people often misread the requirements of their state laws, or can even be looking at an outdated statute that has been amended. Finally, as a practical matter, even if you do not have sufficient repairs to have your vehicle repurchased, often times you can obtain a monetary settlement from your vehicle's manufacturer.
Who pays your attorney fee?
The various state Lemon Laws and other consumer protection statutes that we use generally contain "fee shifting provision" that allow us to collect an attorney fee directly from the defendant automobile manufacturer. Thus, we are happy to state that if you have a lemon law case, you will never be under any obligation to pay us a dime of attorney fees out of pocket.
How do I get started?
If you believe you may have a case, and you live within one of the states we service, we would be happy to evaluate your case for free, with absolutely no obligation. You can either call us at (443) 845-2428, or you can provide us information by clicking the "Free Case Evaluation" button below.