State and federal statutes offer a wide array
of relief for consumers saddled with a bad car or truck. At the
same time, these statutes provide for recovery of costs and attorney
fees - a strong incentive for attorneys who would like to take up
the cause on behalf of unhappy lemon owners.
Lemon laws outline procedures to settle these
sorts of new car problems. Again, laws differ from one state to
another, but lemon laws in general are designed to provide the owner
with a refund or replacement. For instance, some states mandate
a refund or a new car if a significant problem cannot be repaired
in four tries or if the car has been out of service for roughly
a month within the first year or 12,000 miles driven. However, there
are exceptions-for instance, some states only provide for one attempt
for significant safety related issues such as the brakes or steering.
Some states don't stop with just providing lemon owners with either
a refund or a new car. Some, in fact, also let you recover any sort
of attorney's fees that you rack up during your pursuit of lemon
Lemon Law Facts
Every state now has a Lemon Law to protect consumers. It allows
the car buyer to exchange the flawed vehicle for a new one or have
the manufacturer buy it back.
In most states, the Lemon Law applies to problems that arise during
the first year or 12,000 miles of ownership.
You can obtain the rules and procedures to make a claim under the
Lemon Law in your state by calling the administrator of the state's
Once you've established the manufacturer is going to buy back your
car, the battle will be over the vehicle's value. You want the per-mile
charge to be as little as possible.
The best way to guard against getting a lemon in the first place
is to buy a car that has a good repair record.
Magnuson-Moss Warranty act
The Magnuson-Moss Warranty act is a Federal Law
that protects the buyer of any product that costs more than $25
and comes with an express written warranty. Nearly all state Lemon
Law Statutes are similar to the Federal Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act.
All states have enacted their own Warranty Acts and many have enacted
specific statutes that cover automobile warranties. If your vehicle
is not considered a "lemon" in your state, you may have
another recourse. To find out more about the Magnuson-Moss Warranty
Act, click on the link below.