The California lemon law is one of the strictest in the nation. It provides all manner of compensatory mechanisms for car, van, truck, and motorcycle owners who have suffered as the result of defective vehicles. If you’re having constant mechanical troubles with your leased vehicle, you may be entitled to compensation under the California lemon law, provided that you take the requisite steps.
In some states, owners are required to go through manufacturer sponsored arbitration before they can get legal help. This is not the case in California. If you get duped into purchasing or leasing a problematic vehicle, you can go straight to an attorney for help. Furthermore, if you go to arbitration and don’t like the results, you can skip the intermediate steps and go straight to an attorney.
Understanding the California Lemon Law
There are limitations to the California lemon law. For instance, if the manufacturer’s warranty period passes and you start experiencing mechanical troubles after the fact, you may not be entitled to compensation. That said, it doesn’t matter if you lease or buy your vehicle. All that matters is that the dealership and/or manufacturer failed in terms of rehabilitating your vehicle.
Is it really worth the trouble to get compensation under the lemon law? In many cases, consumers simply deal with exorbitant service charges because they don’t want to go through the hassle of taking the matter to court. However, bear in mind that automotive malfunctions can wreak major financial damage over the long run. If you are experiencing difficulty, it never hurts to get an initial consultation.
Why not just get the manufacturer to replace the car? Must you go to an attorney? The sad truth is that most manufacturers won’t replace your vehicle, even if you qualify for replacement under the lemon law. They may tell you that your mechanical issue is “non duplicable” as a way of placing the blame on you. They may try to delay you for weeks or months if you even mention the word “replacement.” Even if they do agree to “replacement,” they’ll likely saddle you with all sorts of odd taxes and fees to dissuade you from proceeding. Your best best is to get a good attorney.
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