Your Warranty & California's Lemon Law

When you lease or purchase a new vehicle, it shouldn’t have any problems. You shouldn’t have to worry about it breaking down, and you shouldn’t have to worry about it being a safety concern. But what if your new vehicle is causing you problems and you keep having to bring it back to the dealership for service?

Fortunately, lawmakers passed the Lemon Law, which protects consumers who buy or lease vehicles with serious warranty defects that the dealer or manufacture have been unable to repair, despite repeated attempts. The key words here are “warranty defects.”

The Lemon Law & Warranty Defects

California’s Lemon Law specifically protects consumers from warranty defects. In some circumstances, a consumer may be entitled to a replacement or a full refund of their vehicle. How is this possible? Because, California’s Lemon Law requires that automotive manufacturers adhere to their express manufacturer’s warranty. If they cannot fix a problem after making reasonable attempts, the manufacturer must replace the defective vehicle or buy it back from the consumer at the full purchase price.

According to the California Department of Consumer Affairs, “The California Lemon Law applies throughout the duration of the vehicle manufacturer’s original warranty period.” If you’re not sure how long this is, you can check your vehicle’s manufacturer’s warranty manual, which will explain the warranty period for your particular vehicle.

The Lemon Law applies to the following new vehicles:

  • Leased and purchased new vehicles.
  • New vehicles purchased or leased for personal use.
  • New vehicles that weight less than 10,000 pounds and are used for business purposes.
  • Dealer-owned vehicles, including “demonstrators” that are sold with the manufacturer’s new car warranty.

Note: New motor vehicles do not include motor homes or motorcycles.

Do you suspect that you purchased or leased a lemon? To determine if you have a claim, contact our office for a free case evaluation with a California Lemon Law attorney.

Categories: