**Full Disclosure: This is a sponsored post which also contains affiliate links. All opinions are my own.
So, you just purchased a vehicle, but you soon notice that it breaks down a lot. First, it was the brakes failing and then it was a problem with the steering components. It seems like you may have just bought a lemon. So, now what? Well, each state has their own set of lemon laws to help deal with the problem.
What you need to know about lemon laws – Generally, for your vehicle to be declared a lemon, it must have a substantial flaw or defect that occurs within a specific amount of time after the purchase date and must be covered by the vehicle’s warranty. A substantial flaw or defect is defined as an issue that impairs the vehicle’s safety, use or value. Many states have lemon laws that protect new vehicle purchases only, while some protect used vehicle purchases as well. In most states. If your vehicle turns out to be a lemon, you may qualify for a refund or a replacement vehicle.
Examples of state lemon laws – In the state of Florida, the lemon law applies to new cars only. You must take action within 24 months of the purchase date, must have had a minimum of 3 repair attempts for the same problem and the vehicle must have been out of service, for at least 15 days, for flaw or defect repairs. In the state of Maine, the lemon law applies to new or used vehicles, motorcycles and motorhomes. You must take action within 3 years of the purchase date OR within 18,000 miles driven, must have had a minimum of 3 repair attempts and the vehicle must have been in a repair shop, for at least 15 business days, to repair the flaw or defect. In the state of Ohio, the lemon law applies to new cars, light trucks and motorcycles. You must take action within 1 year of the purchase date OR the odometer reads less than 18,000 miles, must have had a minimum of 3 repair attempts for a single flaw or defect or a minimum of 8 repair attempts for several flaws or defects and the vehicle must have been in a repair shop, for at least 30 days, to repair the flaw or defect. You can find lemon laws for all 50 states here.
Notify the vehicle manufacturer – If you believe your vehicle is a lemon, the first thing you need to do is contact your vehicle’s manufacturer. Most of the lemon laws require that the manufacturer try and resolve the flaw or defect first. Usually, the manufacturer is given 2-4 chances to remedy the problem.
How to return a lemon according to state statues – If the vehicle manufacturer can’t fix your vehicle’s flaw or defect, your next step is to contact your state’s Attorney General Office. Personnel in that office will inform you what specific procedures you need to take for their lemon law return process. While each state has its own set of procedures, there are some documents you can gather together, to get the ball rolling. You will need to have the vehicle’s bill of sale or receipt, the vehicle manufacturer’s warranty, the vehicle’s repair logs that detail the dates of service, mileage at the time of service and services performed and any correspondences you may have had with the vehicle’s manufacturer.
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