Lemon Laws Protect Buyers Of New Cars

Lemon Laws Protect Buyers Of New Cars

As the economy improves the number of new cars being sold is gradually increasing. Reports are quite bullish, they are pointing to indications that the market has every chance of meeting the pre-crisis numbers of about 15 million new cars and light trucks every year. Whether the manufacturers can bring down the number of vehicles manufactured that eventually meet the definition of “lemon” is something else again. In terms of percentage the number of lemons is not high, about one percent, but if you happen to be the buyer of one of those vehicles you have every right to be upset.

Fortunately, every state has a car lemon law that the consumer who happened to be one of the unlucky buyers can rely on for recourse.

It is important to know that there are laws to protect the unlucky buyer of a lemon vehicle, it is even more important to know what qualifies as a lemon and what can be done to either get a replacement or a refund.

How does the law define what a lemon is?

There is no one definition of a lemon; every state has enacted its own laws. Although there are differences there are also some similarities, two of which are:

   * The vehicle has a chronic defect that is covered under the terms of the warranty and that the problem occurred within a specified number of months or a certain number of miles driven after the original purchase date.
   * The defect is substantial and cannot be repaired after a reasonable number of attempts

In the greatest majority of states lemon laws only apply to the purchase or lease of a new car.

What is a “substantial” defect?

This is always an area where there is the possibility of contention. Under the terms of the car lemon law a “substantial” defect is one that has a negative effect on the safety, the use or the resale value. Things that would indisputable would be faulty brakes, faulty steering, transmission or engine problems, etc. Things that would normally not be considered would be loose knobs, a radio that fails to work, etc. Anything that does not negatively affect the value, use or safety cannot be used as the reason for declaring the vehicle a lemon.

The “substantial defect” must have occurred while the vehicle is still under warranty and within a certain time frame which varies from one to two years or within 12,000 to 24,000 miles. The car lemon law does not apply if the vehicle was modified, poorly maintained or abused.

The applicable car lemon law differs from one state to another. If you feel your car is a lemon it is in your best interest to know the specifics of the law that applies in your jurisdiction. To learn more you are invited to visit the web site yourlemonlawrights.com.

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