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How Lemon Laws Work Against Defective Vehicles

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How Lemon laws work against defective vehicles is one of the first questions vehicle owners ask when they realize their new car could be a Lemon. Lemon Laws have been created to help consumers who are dealing with a vehicle that was not manufactured properly.

Basically, the law keeps manufacturers honest when their vehicle builds do not meet the minimum quality and safety standards. If you are unfortunate enough to purchase one of these vehicles then these laws are made to protect you.

Let’s take a closer look at Lemon Laws, figure out how they work, and give you some useful tips for dealing with a lemon.

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How Lemon Laws Were Created to Protect You From Defective Vehicles

So how do Lemon laws protect you from defective vehicles? Since the mid 70’s laws both at the Federal and State level were enacted to level the playing field between manufacturers and consumers when it came to faulty vehicles. 

More and more vehicle quality and safety issues kept coming up and consumers were left on their own to fight with manufacturers to fix their Lemon Vehicle. States like California had already enacted their own Lemon Law in 1970, called the Song-Beverly Act. This act served as an outline to create a Lemon Law at a Federal level.  

Finally, in 1975, John J. Woodcock III introduced the first law known as the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act or the Federal Lemon Law. 

These laws provided a foundation for consumers to hold vehicle manufacturers accountable when their builds had defects or safety issues that affected their value, and use or put the consumer in danger. 

Manufacturers were now mandated by law to repair, replace, or refund the defective vehicle if the vehicle’s defect was not fixed after several attempts. How can consumers use this law? We will get into it next. 

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Breaking Down the Lemon Law and How it Works With Faulty Vehicles

Lemon Laws are legislation specifically designed to protect consumers who have purchased vehicles with significant defects, often referred to as “Lemons.” These laws vary from state to state, but they share a common goal – to provide consumers with legal remedies when they find themselves stuck with a defective vehicle.

Typically, Lemon Laws come into play when a vehicle has substantial defects that affect its safety, value, or use. These defects must persist even after a reasonable number of repair attempts. The exact definition of a “reasonable number” varies, but it often hinges on the number of repair attempts made or the duration the car has been out of service.

When a car qualifies under the Lemon Law, consumers may be eligible for various remedies. These can include a full refund or replacement vehicle, compensation for repair costs, or even financial compensation for the inconvenience caused. It’s essential to understand the specific Lemon Laws in your state, as they may vary regarding coverage, requirements, and timeframes.

The Federal law also states that if your vehicle is declared a “lemon” then manufacturers must cover all attorney fees for the plaintiff. This makes the process free to the consumer and a no-brainer to hire a Lemon Law attorney near you.

Consumer Lemon Law advocates help consumers every day find the right lemon lawyer for their case. Call us today for a free consultation to get your Lemon Law claim started. 

Tired of driving a lemon? Call us


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Basic Lemon Law Tips To Get You Started

We put together a basic list of Lemon Law tips that can help you get started with filing a successful Lemon Law claim:

  1. Gather all Relevant Documentation: From the moment you start experiencing issues with your car, keeping detailed records of all interactions with the manufacturer or dealership is crucial. This includes dates, times, names of individuals involved, and a clear description of the problems encountered. These records serve as valuable evidence to support your claim.

  2. Understand the Lemon Law in Your Jurisdiction: Each state has its unique Lemon Law provisions, so it’s essential to familiarize yourself with the specifics that apply to your situation. Your Lemon Law attorney will be able to provide the nuances of the law at a state level.

  3. Keep track of how many times your vehicle has been repaired for the same defect. If you have at least 2 to 3 unsuccessful repairs documented for the same defect, then you are ready to talk to an attorney.

Our Thoughts On The Lemon Law

The Lemon Law has become a trusted resource among consumers who are dealing with a defective new vehicle and are not receiving adequate support from the manufacturer. 

Many manufacturers, like the case against Chrysler (FCA) are taking the stance that they will tire out the consumer until they “give up” on their lemon and trade it in for below-market value.

This is a horrible trend as the manufacturer is not held responsible for a subpar vehicle and the vehicle will just be resold without it being declared a lemon.  

That will only continue the toxic cycle and will put people’s lives in jeopardy because of the safety concerns involved. 

Don’t fall into that trap, call us and we will connect you with the right attorney that will get you out of your lemon and into a reliable vehicle. 


Lemon Laws FAQs

Lemon laws are regulations designed to safeguard consumers from purchasing defective vehicles. These laws empower car buyers with rights to receive compensation, such as a refund or replacement vehicle, if they purchase a new car that repeatedly fails to meet quality and performance standards.

A car is typically considered a lemon if it exhibits a substantial defect or malfunction that persists after a reasonable number of repair attempts, as defined by state lemon law statutes. These defects must significantly impair the vehicle’s use, value, or safety.


Lemon laws exist both federally and at the state level. While there are federal regulations such as the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, most lemon law cases are handled at the state level, with each state having its own specific lemon law provisions.

Although not always required, consulting with a lawyer experienced in lemon law cases can be beneficial. Lawyers can provide valuable guidance, ensure adherence to legal procedures, and advocate for your rights, potentially leading to a more favorable outcome in your lemon law claim.

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