What Is a Lemon Law?
Lemon Laws are laws in place to help protect consumers who have unknowingly purchased a defective vehicle. The defect can be something affecting the vehicle’s safety, performance, or resale value.
As with many other things, Lemon Laws vary from state to state. There is a federal law, but under it the buyer is only eligible to recover the difference between what was paid for the vehicle and what it was actually worth at the time of sale–or what the buyer would have been willing to pay had the defect been acknowledged.
According to the Better Business Bureau, state laws vary most in the type of vehicles covered (some state laws cover only new cars; others only used; still others cover new and used), the time you have to report an issue, and the number of times a manufacturer has to make repairs before a vehicle can be termed a “lemon.”
Tips for Winning a Lemon Law Case
- Do not wait to address the problem, both for safety reasons and the window of time you have to report a suspected lemon. With continuing supply chain issues and employee shortages, getting repairs done and navigating through a lot of red tape takes longer than normal these days.
- If the vehicle is still under warranty, the manufacturer should make repairs. Look up your state’s laws to learn the number of tries a manufacturer has to resolve the issue. As noted above, it varies from state to state; in Kentucky, it’s four attempts, for example. In North Dakota, the manufacturer has three tries.
- Keep good records. When you speak to someone on the phone about the vehicle, take notes. Record the date, the name of the person you spoke to, what was said, and any promises made.
- Before proceeding, make sure to gather all the documentation you can to help prove your case. Describe the problem clearly. Make sure and include correspondence between you and the dealer or manufacturer and all repair records.
- Get a professional auto appraiser to calculate the value of the vehicle and provide a detailed report proving the findings. Having an expert appraisal is important in proving your case,
- Arbitration can be a simpler, quicker way of resolving a dispute than going to court, and your vehicle warranty may require it. Going to court can be a time-consuming hassle. A car value appraiser can serve as a mediator.
- If both parties cannot reach a satisfactory agreement, the issue must be resolved in court. In that case, you should consider using an expert witness.
What Is a Lemon Law Expert Witness?
A Lemon Law Expert Witness should have lots of experience in the auto business as well as specialized knowledge of car valuation. Auto appraisers can be excellent expert witnesses in cases involving dealer fraud and Lemon Laws. An expert witness should also be able to clearly and authoritatively communicate evidence of a car’s defect to the court.
The Auto Mediator provides both mediation services and expert witness services. In the appraisal business for more than 20 years, they have a reputation for experience and knowledge and have acted as court-appointed expert witnesses for the Los Angeles County Public Defender’s Office on matters related to cars and auto valuation.
They have a proven track record when it comes to winning cases for their clients.
Trust the Auto Mediator
Clients turn to Auto Mediators anytime they need an accurate auto valuation. For help proving your case in a Lemon Law trial or for an accurate appraisal in a total loss or diminished value claim or a case involving bankruptcy, divorce, or estate settlement, trust The Auto Mediator,