Lemon Law for New Cars in California - How to Get Compensation

Lemon Law for New Cars in California – How to Get Compensation

California Lemon Law is in place to protect buyers who purchase a defective vehicle. To qualify for the California lemon law guidelines, your vehicle must be under warranty and have unrepairable defects.

Because there are many stipulations and conditions to adhere to, it’s important that you take the time necessary to understand California’s lemon law. Otherwise, you could miss the timeframe for filing a claim or fail to get the compensation you deserve.

It’s time to get professional Lemon Law Lawyers on your side. After representing California drivers against some of the biggest car manufacturers, we know how to get the job done and we don’t stop until the vehicle manufacturers pay for selling you a lemon. Get your free Lemon Law Consultation today. 

As a premier lemon law attorney, we hope to guide new car owners through the process of getting compensation for a defective vehicle. We show you how the California lemon law applies to your situation and what the next legal actions should be.

What is California Lemon Law – New Car

What is California Lemon Law - New Car

The California Lemon Law refers to a set of statutes and regulations designed to protect consumers who purchase or lease defective vehicles. These laws provide legal recourse for consumers who have bought or leased a new vehicle that fails to meet the quality standards outlined in the warranty. In California, Lemon Law covers cars, trucks, SUVs, motorcycles, vans, motorhomes and electric vehicles.

Under Lemon law guidelines, the following types of vehicles are covered:

  • New vehicles purchased with a manufacturer’s warranty
  • New vehicles leased from a dealership
  • Used vehicles sold with a factory warranty or dealer’s express written guarantee

However, the law specifies that some vehicles are exempt from coverage, such as commercial vehicles that weigh more than 10,000 pounds (some chassis cab trucks) and off-road models. Trailers and mopeds aren’t usually covered either, but you could discuss the situation with a lemon law attorney to see if you are owed any compensation.

If your new car has been purchased or leased and is still covered by the warranty, there must be a known vehicle defect that substantially impairs its use, safety or value. This defect must be covered under the manufacturer’s warranty and the dealership must have attempted to repair it. If your car fits these criteria, it’s considered a lemon.

Authorized dealers are given a reasonable number of repair attempts before legal action can be taken. The allowance is often four repair tries, not totaling more than thirty days. Additionally, the defect must occur within the first 18 months from the time of vehicle delivery or 18,000 miles, whichever comes first.

If your vehicle meets these conditions, working with an experienced lemon law attorney can ensure you receive maximum compensation. The average Lemon Law settlement ranges from $5,000 to $100,000, but most car manufacturers pay out more when the client is working with a California lemon law attorney.

What is the General Timeline for Lemon Cases for New Cars?

When filing a lemon law claim in California, the timeframe before receiving compensation depends on several factors, including whether arbitration is offered. Sometimes, a letter will be sent to the auto manufacturer and they will immediately offer a lemon law buyback or replacement vehicle. In other situations, filing a lemon law case with the California courts may be necessary.

What’s most important is that you file the claim within the California Lemon Law Time Limit. If you don’t, there could be no way of getting compensation for your defective vehicle under lemon law in California.

Many drivers assume that they have the entire warranty period to file the claim, but that’s not the case. The maximum time allowed is 18 months after vehicle delivery. However, even if you think that the California lemon laws don’t apply in your situation, it’s still wise to speak with a qualified attorney, especially if there has been a serious injury due to the defect.

When should you file a Lemon Law Claim for New Cars?

When should you file a Lemon Law Claim for New Cars?

There’s no hard rule about how and when to file for California lemon law buyback. We recommend starting the process as soon as you realize that the defects aren’t getting worked out in a reasonable time. The first step is to contact the dealership and let them know that the vehicle needs to be repaired within thirty days, especially if it’s getting close to that time.

The dealerships can hold your car for 30 days, but these days don’t need to be consecutive. The thirty-day period counts for all the time that the car has been in for service for the same defect.

If the car has been held for longer than that, it may qualify as one of the reasons to sue a dealership. Aside from what the California lemon law covers, you may take legal action if there’s a breach of contract, negligence, fraud, warranty issues or predatory lending practices.

The key is knowing when to contact a Beverly Hills Lemon Law attorney. It’s essential that you have lemon law protection from the beginning. You should never walk through this time alone.

Most people put off using lemon law attorneys because of money, but that should never hold you back. Not only do we have reasonable Lemon law attorney fees in California, but you may not have to pay any of them. We offer a free consultation to discuss defective motor vehicles and can get the manufacturer to pay all of the fees for the lemon law work. You have nothing to lose.

California’s Lemon Law Eligibility Criteria for Compensation for New Vehicles

California's Lemon Law Eligibility Criteria for Compensation for New Vehicles

While there are some protections for used cars, let’s specifically look at how the new vehicle qualifies for compensation under California law. The bottom line is that the car must be covered under a manufacturer’s new vehicle warranty but have significant defects that impair the car’s use, safety, or value.

There are several types of problems covered by Lemon Law. Here are just a few to consider:

Mechanical failures: The defect can be a major mechanical failure, such as a stalling engine to anything minor, including a small oil leak.

Safety issues: Any problem that compromises your safety is covered, including faulty brakes or a malfunctioning airbag.

Structural defects: If there’s a defect in the frame or suspension, it could lead to an accident, so the vehicle is covered under lemon law protections.

Ongoing performance problems: Performance could be related to how much power the engine is outputting or how the ride feels, both of which are covered if there’s a defect that can’t be fixed.

Unresolved manufacturer recalls: Recalls must be repaired in a reasonable number of attempts or you may be due compensation.

It’s important to consider what qualifies as a reasonable number of repair attempts under CA Lemon Law. The car must be in the repair shop for the same problem a minimum of four times or thirty days, whichever comes first. These regulations vary depending on the severity of the defect and its impact on vehicle safety and usability.

While it’s also essential to consider the vehicle warranty period and how it applies to coverage, there’s a presumption period for lemon law disputes. While a lemon vehicle must be covered by a manufacturer’s or extended warranty, the case must also be filed within 18,000 miles or 18 months of vehicle delivery. Otherwise, you may forfeit your right to compensation under the California civil code.

What Kind of Compensation Can You Expect for a New Lemon Car?

What Kind of Compensation Can You Expect for a New Lemon Car?

Now that you know what criteria is necessary to make the California lemon law apply to your situation, it’s time to discuss what compensation may look like. You may be eligible for a replacement vehicle, a refund of the purchase price, a cash-and-keep settlement, or monetary compensation for damages. Let’s look at these options a little closer.

Replacement of the vehicle

Purchased and leased vehicles may be replaced by the manufacturer with one that is equal to or better than what’s already being driven. The automobile manufacturer must replace the defective car with one free of the same problems. This replacement vehicle should also come with a car warranty.

Refund of the purchase price

California lemon law, based on the Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act and the Tanner Consumer Protection Act (California Civil Code, § 1793.2 et seq.) specifies that if your vehicle is defective and hasn’t been repaired after a reasonable amount of attempts, you may be owed a refund on the purchase price. Civil penalties do allow for deductions to be made for the time it was used.

Cash-and-keep settlement

The manufacturer may also offer the vehicle owner cash with the option to keep the vehicle even though it has defects. Depending upon the severity of the defects, this may be a good option. However, you’ll want to investigate the rules under California’s lemon law about how you can sell this vehicle in the future. You also won’t be able to file for further compensation under California lemon law for those defects.

Monetary compensation for damages

In addition to the replacement or refund, you may receive monetary compensation for other damages incurred. For example, if you needed a car rental while your vehicle was in the repair shop, these fees may be reimbursed. Your legal fees may also be covered by the manufacturer if they are found to be liable. Any additional sales tax, registration fees, and expenses may be lumped into the settlement.

The overall settlement that you receive depends upon the severity of the defect, how long you’ve used the vehicle, and your legal representation. While California covers the consumer with protection, most manufacturers aren’t going to willingly give up the maximum amount of compensation without an attorney getting involved. For this reason, you want an experienced and qualified lemon law attorney on your team.

Do you always have to file a Lemon Law Case to get Compensation?

Lemon law cases aren’t always fought in court. Your lawyer may decide that it’s best to reach out to the manufacturer and file with the California Department of Motor Vehicles (California DMV) instead. Your legal options can be explained to you during your free consultation with one of our attorneys.

How to File a Lemon Law Claim for a New Car

How to File a Lemon Law Claim for a New Car

While a used car may also be covered by state and federal laws (such as the Magnuson Moss Warranty Act), we are going to focus on how to get compensation for new car purchases and leases. Here are the steps of the Lemon Law Process to follow if you want to resolve the situation quickly and to your satisfaction.

Gather all documentation: You need records of every communication with the dealership’s service department and manufacturer. Ensure your documents include the names of the people you’ve spoken with, the date and time, and the resolution.

Pre-litigation demand: The next step would be to communicate with the manufacturer or dealership and request a refund or replacement. In many cases, these letters of demand receive zero attention unless they are sent from a legal firm. Lemon law presumes that you’ve given the manufacturer every chance to make things right, so this step must be taken before further legal action may proceed.

Arbitration/court: From here, the manufacturer may opt to go to arbitration, which would mean no court time. Otherwise, you may take the case to court and try to earn compensation that route.

With a car covered by lemon law protections, most manufacturers don’t want to go to court. That’s why it’s vital to have an experienced attorney, like the ones at The Lemon Pros, handling the negotiations for you.

How a Lemon Law Attorney Can Help New Car Owners Maximize Payout

How a Lemon Law Attorney Can Help New Car Owners Maximize Payout

A California lemon lawyer can help with mediation and negotiation. Lemon law lawyers won’t allow you to be pushed around or agree to terms that are unfavorable. If your California lemon law case goes to court, the facts will need to be discussed with a judge present. In either case, knowing the lemon laws and understanding your rights is imperative.

Whether you are filing for a leased car or a used vehicle purchased through private party sales, we can find ways to get the compensation you deserve. Because you don’t need to worry about the cost of a Lemon Law Attorney, there’s nothing stopping you from getting the representation you need for the maximum payout.

When choosing a lemon law attorney, make sure you choose someone who has a track record of getting results. Our California lemon law attorneys have helped thousands of other clients earn the maximum amount of compensation and we strive to do so for all our clients. Ask for their experience and only deal with someone confident enough to give you a free consultation. You also want a lemon law lawyer who will force the manufacturer to pay your legal fees so you don’t have to put any money out upfront.

3 Tips to make the most out of your Lemon Law Claim

For the best results, consider these three helpful tips for getting the maximum compensation.

Keep track of every communication. The more documentation you have, the better your chances are of getting paid for your trouble.

Don’t wait to hire an attorney. It’s best to have an attorney send the demand letter to the dealership and manufacturer. Most companies aren’t going to pay attention to a consumer sending the letter.

Be willing to negotiate. If the manufacturer gives you an offer that seems too low, your attorney can negotiate on your behalf to get more.

Get Maximum Compensation – Contact us today!

If you have a new vehicle that’s been to adequate repair facilities and the defects haven’t been resolved, you may be due compensation. It must be covered by a manufacturer’s or extended warranty and the claim needs to be filed within the first 18 months after delivery or 18,000 miles.

To get everything you deserve, having a qualified attorney working with you is important. By not knowing your rights, you could miss out on valuable compensation.

As soon as you suspect your vehicle is a lemon, it’s time to contact an attorney. Waiting could cost you money and time. Call a lemon car lawyer in California to ensure you get every penny that’s owed to you. Our lawyers have countless hours of experience fighting for consumers just like you. We’ve earned top dollar for our clients and we can do the same for your situation. Receive your free Lemon Law Consultation today.

We don’t let manufacturers off easily. Join us to get the money you deserve from a lemon buyback.

You deserve to get compensated for a lemon car. Schedule an appointment at our Lemon Law Attorney Practice in Beverly Hills.

Call us today for a free consultation before time runs out to pursue your claim.

Phone: (800) 917-7147

Email: info@thelemonpros.com

Why Choose The Lemon Pros?

Our specialty is Lemon Law, that is why we only handle Lemon Law claims. When you hire us, our attorneys will do all the legal work for you, because we understand the stress that consumers like you deal with when they have a Lemon.

We have an excellent success record in representing consumers just like you! We are award winning attorneys, but that has not gotten to our heads. We are attorneys who care and give personalized attention to each and every client, our attorneys directly handle your claim.

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