Each state’s Lemon Law varies from each other, but here in California the official name is the Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act. Every state’s Lemon Law serves the same purpose – it protects the consumer’s rights when it comes to a new car warranty. It’s under the Lemon Law that you can file a claim against a manufacturer or company for refusing to carry out legally-bonded repairs to your vehicle.
If you’ve purchased or rented a car under factory warranty, California’s Lemon Law dictates that you can insist that issues with the vehicle are repaired quickly and to the company’s best ability. The law in California has some unique aspects, such as the coverage of leased vehicles, some used cars might come under the Lemon Law, and that it covers all types of vehicles, from Jet Skis to Motorcycles.
Win A Lemon Law Claim In California
Before embarking on filing a claim against an auto-manufacturer, it should be noted that these companies are multi-billion dollar companies. Each and every claim damages their profit margins and they have extensive legal teams as a result Warranty specialists and defense lawyers are well-versed in minimizing how much they have to pay you, the consumer. That’s why you should always seek legal counsel with an expert team of attorneys.
Understanding Your Case
You’ll likely have many questions during our initial free consultation. There are many complex variations on Lemon Law which will explain in office. It’s better for you to have a clear idea of the process before we begin. While we answer these questions, we’ll also check your vehicle’s repair history and assess the validity of your claim. Here are a few of the questions we encounter regularly.
Is My Vehicle a Lemon?
As we mentioned, California’s Lemon Law covers a range of different vehicles in a variety of conditions. Although there have been huge advancements in car design and manufacturing, there are still countless cars every year that roll out of the factory with defects. It’s dangerous and companies should pay compensation for problems that arise inside a vehicle’s warranty.
Lemon Law states that the manufacturers need to repair vehicles under warranty “within a reasonable number of attempts.” If the repairs do not work, they must replace or purchase the vehicle from you. The law in California applies to motorcycles, off-road vehicles, boats and watercraft, dealer-owned vehicles and demos, and cars, trucks, SUVs and vans.
These defects aren’t always dangerous, and it’s not only the more severe incidents where a lemon law claim is advised. Even smaller cases like faulty in-car entertainment systems or lights are viable to be filed under Lemon Law. Contact us today over the phone for a fast consultation and let us determine whether or not your vehicle is legible.
What Does Lemon Law Cover?
Beyond the type of vehicle, Lemon Law is also drawn up into different specific rules that make your vehicle legible. It should be a new vehicle used primarily for personal purposes or a vehicle under 10,000 pounds used for business purposes, providing the owner has fewer than five business vehicles registered in California. Everything is determined by how long the vehicle has been out of service and how many repair attempts have been made by the manufacturer. Find out more through our free consultation service.
How Much is my Claim Worth?
This differs from case to case. There have been records of up to $400,000 being paid out to Lemon Law claimants. However, there are usually two clear solutions to lemon law claims.
You may be offered a replacement vehicle that is similar to the original lemon. It should include the same contract, dealer-specific options and repayment for towing fees. However, you might be charged extra for the replacement vehicle determined by how long you drove the vehicle trouble-free.
Alternatively, you will receive a refund or buyback. This is arranged according to your original down payment, your monthly payments towards the vehicle, and the remaining loan balance.
Will I need other documentation for my lemon law claim?
Again, this varies from case to case. In some situations, more evidence is needed to effectively file a claim. We handle this part of the process so you don’t have to. We’ve gone through it many times before and can quickly assemble the needed evidence to get your claim processed quickly.
Initial Steps – Sending A Demand Letter
The first step taken by our attorney is to send a demand letter to the auto-manufacturer. This letter states that the company must provide compensation for your issue under California’s Lemon Law. Rarely will a company resolve a claim simply because of the letter, though from our experience claims are more effective when initiated with a demand letter.
Negotiating A Settlement
Lemon Law claims will very often end in a negotiated settlement. This is where the two parties propose a series of counter offers before a voluntary solution is reached. Lemon law cases are shaped by two factors which will have an impact on the eventual settlement.
Both parties – our team at Tofer & Associates and the auto-manufacturer’s legal team – examine the claim. We look for potential weak spots or whether or not the manufacturer believes you were at fault for misusing the vehicle, leading to the defect. If this is the case, then it will likely be resolved as a smaller settlement.
However, if the case does proceed to trial, the full extent of the manufacturer’s law-breaking actions become apparent. This is where the consumer is able to benefit hugely in the form of a large settlement.
For a negotiated settlement to be successful, you need a strong attorney to fight your case. Our team is experienced with lemon law and tackling the largest auto-manufacturing companies operating in California.
Litigation, If Needed
If no solution is reached, the claim will go to the next level. Litigation. This begins when our attorney files a complaint stating the manufacturer breached the warranty contract. Once received, the manufacturer responds with their own plea and the case is taken to the court. During the following months, both parties argue motions in front of a judge and collect case-related information.
However, Lemon Law claims will rarely reach all the way to the trial. It’s likely a settlement will be made during this pre-trial process. If we believe that your case is justified in court, we’re with you every step of the way. We don’t bend to the legal teams of the gigantic auto-manufacturing companies.
Find The Right Attorney
Tofer & Associates specializes in handling cases against some of the largest companies in the country. In an ideal world, the process would involve direct communication with the manufacturer followed by compensation for the fees involved with getting your defective vehicle on the road. It should come as no surprise that these large companies are often unwilling to give ample compensation to customers who have purchased a defective vehicle.
You can expect plenty of paper-work and legal loopholes. These companies have extensive legal teams well-versed in protecting their client’s profit margins. If they can find a way to cheat you out of fair treatment, they will. That’s why you need a strong team of attorneys to fight your case and take it all the way to trial if necessary. Hiring an attorney versed in lemon law is likely to increase your overall payout – even an auto-manufacturer’s legal team isn’t keen on fighting a formidable opponent, seeking a negotiated solution rather than induce more fees during a drawn-out legal process.
If you believe you have been wrongfully charged for repairs which should have been covered by the manufacturer, Tofer & Associates is here to work through the ins-and-outs your case. Due to the complicated nature of the law – and how it differs from state to state – we recommend calling us to book a consultation appointment. Our team of attorneys will always fight the huge auto-manufacturers, and so should you.
If you have any questions, or would like a FREE case consultation, do not hesitate to contact us by email: email@example.com Or by telephone: 800-291-9000