Lemon Law: Frequently Asked Questions
Answers from Our California Lemon Law Attorneys
Have you purchased a vehicle that has defects? If so, you may have a lemon. You likely have many questions during this difficult time and require reliable answers. At Norman Taylor & Associates, our California lemon law lawyers are dedicated to providing the individuals we serve with the information they require to achieve a successful result. Rather than walking blindly into your lemon law case, read through the answers to frequently asked questions below to develop a clear perspective of your legal situation. After you have gained all of the basic information, we encourage you to ask more specific questions about your case during a
free case evaluation.
Does my used car qualify under the California lemon law?
Yes. Used cars can qualify under the California lemon law as long as your sale came with a written warranty. If your vehicle was sold "as is," then the lemon law will not likely apply. There are other laws that may apply to your situation - consumer fraud laws that could assist you. If you are unsure whether your used car qualifies, speak with a member of our firm.
How long does the lemon law apply in California?
The California lemon law applies for as long as the vehicle is covered any warranty sold with the vehicle. In some instances where a consumer has taken his vehicle in for warranty repairs toward the tail end of their express warranty, and the defect is not actually repaired, the warranty by law continues to cover that portion of the vehicle until the defect is actually repair notwithstanding expiration of the warranty.
How many times must I take my car back for repairs before it is considered a "lemon?"
The manufacturer is allowed a "reasonable" number of attempts to repair the vehicle. Although the law does not specify what a reasonable number of attempts is, three or four repairs are often considered reasonable. What is reasonable may well depend upon the seriousness of the particular problem. Another factor that must be considered is the number of miles in-between repair attempts.
What action should I take if I believe my vehicle is a safety defect?
If the consumer is under the impression that there is a safety problem or defect with his or her vehicle, it should be brought to the attention of the dealer for a second opinion. Another option is to contact the manufacturer directly. You can also retain an automotive expert to inspect the vehicle and determine the severity of the problem. You can also contact this firm for sound legal guidance.
If I purchased my vehicle in another state, but live in California, which state's lemon laws apply?
According to the California Department of Consumer Affairs, the California Lemon Laws only apply to vehicles sold or leased in the state of California. If you live in California, but purchased your vehicle in another state, you may still be entitled to protections under that state's lemon laws.
Do all states in the U.S. have lemon laws?
Every state has at least some version of auto warranty laws that resemble the federal Magnuson–Moss Warranty Act, an act that protects consumers against breach of warranty committed by the manufacturer. California's auto-specific warranty laws or "lemon laws" are found in the Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act.
I want to purchase a vehicle, but was told it's a "lemon law buyback vehicle." What does this mean?
Lemon law buyback vehicles are certain vehicles that were reacquired by the manufacturer due to a warranty defect. To know for sure whether a vehicle is a lemon law buyback, check the title and registration certificate. It should be listed there. Read more information on Lemon Law Buyback Vehicles.
What is the Better Business Bureau Auto Line?
The BBB Auto Line is a free program of the California Department of Consumer Affairs. Consumers with automobile warranty disputes can file with the BBB Auto Line as long as their vehicle's manufacturer is one of the participating manufacturers. Currently, there are 15 manufacturers on the list. Resolving your case this way is different than going the lemon law route. Many consumers find that the BBB Auto Line process takes an inordinate amount of time and doesn't produce desirable results, which is why many choose to hire a lemon law attorney.
What damages may I be entitled to under the California lemon law?
You may be entitled to receive a replacement or a refund. In addition you can recover registration fees, rental car expenses, and charges for towing. As the consumer, you may elect to have a repurchase instead of a replacement. In some circumstances the manufacturer is entitled to a mileage offset for the value of the miles you drove the vehicle prior to the first attempt at repair. Our firm can help you fight for just compensation for damages under California's lemon law. We encourage you to take immediate action to ensure that your rights are protected.
Do you have further questions regarding your lemon law case?
You likely never expected to own a lemon. We can provide you with as much information as you need. We have assisted over 10,000 individuals in the past as they sought refunds and replacements. Take the time to get your questions answered by talking with our responsive staff. Find out how the California lemon laws affect your case and what actions you can take in your specific situation. Contact Norman Taylor & Associates.