Lemon Law: How and When to File a Claim

The lemon law continues to be a source of news throughout the US. Most recently, strengthened lemon law legislation for the state of Oklahoma was signed into law by Governor Brad Henry. Consumers are publicly raising an outcry against Chrysler, who recently declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy and have not been honoring legitimate lemon law claims. In Oregon, the state senate has just voted in favor of strengthening that state’s lemon laws.

It is important for consumers to know when they should file a lemon law claim, and exactly how it is done. First and foremost, once a vehicle owner has decided that they may be driving a lemon, it is important that they seek legal advice as soon as possible. Manufacturers and dealers do their utmost to discourage and delay consumers from filing lemon law claims—and without proper legal advice, they are swimming with the sharks.

“Few people really know or understand their legal rights,” said leading California lemon law attorney Norman Taylor. “Without an attorney, many consumers would just give up and go away. This is just what manufacturers want.”

In hiring an attorney—just like when hiring any professional—you should find out how long they have been practicing and what their success rate has been. Once you have hired a qualified attorney, he or she will guide you through gathering the information necessary for a case. They will assist you in hiring an expert third-party consultant, if needed, in collecting all the proper paperwork, and giving legal notice to the manufacturer.

“Once you have an attorney on board and have notified the manufacturer of your intention to pursue your lemon law rights, you’ll discover why you really need an attorney on your side,” said Taylor. “Manufactures have numerous devices to draw out the process, such as ignoring your notice to make you think you have no case, responding that you do not qualify under the law, or even ‘glad handing’ you in different ways, trying to charm you out of going ahead with your case. None of these result in a satisfactory result, and an attorney knows how to address them.”

Taylor has seen every one of these diversionary tactics in action. He has been a lemon law specialist since 1987, and he and his firm, Norman Taylor and Associates, have handled over 6,000 cases for consumers with a 98 percent success rate. He is one of the leading lemon law attorneys in southern and all of California.

The bottom line: If you think you may be driving a defective vehicle, consult a qualified lemon law attorney right away.

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