What is a Lemon Law?

You might have been saving for quite some time to get yourself a car. When you buy one, everything looks great, and you feel like you have just made a great accomplishment. The car comes with a long-term warranty, drives great, and also looks classic. However, in a short period, you start experiencing some setbacks with your new asset. At this point, you decide to take your car to a dealer to get the vehicle fixed.

However, a week or two later, the previous problems are back. It is then that you start to find that the vehicle must not be as good as you thought. At this time, you begin to think that you might have purchased a ‘lemon car.’ Can you get your money back? Can you return the vehicle and get a refund? These are the questions that you ask yourself. At this point, you will mostly feel cheated. This is as a result of the performance of the vehicle not being what you expected, or what was appraised of it.

Lemon Law, What It Is?

Lemon laws are laws in some countries designed to help provide options for car owners who feel that they purchased products that don’t meet the quality standards set or promised. These standards include performance standards, the quality of the spare parts, and the under-performance of particular products. To find more about the Lemon Laws of your state, you can check out the business bureau overview of the lemon laws in each state.

What Are the Requirements of Lemon Laws?

Lemon laws are not applicable in all the situations that you experience in your vehicle. The laws apply only to the problems your car will experience, especially when a warranty still covers the vehicle. This does not have to be a warranty for a new car. However, it has to be a limited warranty that will come with the used car.

For the lemon laws to work, the federal requires that:

•    The manufacturer must have tried to do repairs on your car for some time with no success. The number of times has to be above three times. The law is also applicable if you’ve had problems with your car that are different and render your vehicle unusable.

•    The attempts you’ve made to fix the vehicle have happened in the first or second year of your car purchase. However, the fixes are to be solely not emergent from incidents like accidents or other car damaging human-caused actions.

•    For a minimum of 30 days, your car has been in a state that cannot be used due to repairs. The days do not have to be consecutive.

It is also important to note that:

•    You should only take your vehicle to your dealer for repairs if you intend to get results for a used car or new car law. Taking your vehicle to another mechanic will absolve your car manufacturer of any responsibility in the lemon laws.

•    You will need to keep a good depth and a detailed record of every repair. Since a settlement will probably happen in a court of law, you will need to fully substantiate the claim that your dealer had adequate chances to fix your vehicle, but they couldn’t. The records you keep will act as evidence and provide details of what was the repair and the amount of time your car was in a state of unavailability due to the performance issues and also the attempted repairs.

•    It would be best if you considered getting yourself an attorney. Your claims based on lemon laws can get quashed very fast by the battalion of lawyers most car dealers have. These lawyers have extensive knowledge of lemon laws. Therefore, it is critical to have a lawyer who will have your back when you decide to file a claim.


In the purchase agreement that you signed when you made the purchase, there might be an arbitration clause that would require you to negotiate an agreement with the dealer instead of filing a lawsuit in court. Other states require you to go through the Business Bureau Auto line before filing a lawsuit. Therefore, it is important to have an attorney who will advise you in all situations.

Author: Full Editorial