The CA Lemon Law at a Glance

You spent countless hours choosing the right vehicle, signed all papers, exchanged handshakes with the car dealer and full of excitement showed your new purchase to your family and friends!

One gloomy Monday afternoon you are driving along a highway in California when your car breaks down. This also happens a week later and you schedule an appointment with a mechanic, but he is unable to fix the issue!

You are shocked and have no idea what to do! You are not alone! Thousands of consumers face such problems every day and are clueless about how to act! Fortunately, you don’t have to live with your lemon car longer as all states have laws designed to protect consumers like you from purchasing defective vehicles. CA lemon law isn’t an exception. Keep scrolling to find out how your consumer rights are protected under the CA Lemon Law.


CA Lemon Law in a Nutshell

It goes without saying that every state in the United States has different lemon laws and a set of standards and procedures consumers should take into consideration. But one thing is for sure, all lemon laws give consumers peace of mind! As for CA Lemon Law, it is one of the most effective and pro-consumer lemon laws in the USA and we will explain why!

In California, (as well as in most states) the car must have a “substantial defect” that isn’t caused by the owner after the purchase and continue to have the defect after a number of repair attempts in order to qualify as a lemon.

But what means a substantial defect? This refers to defects that significantly impair the use, value, or safety of the vehicle, such as faulty brakes or steering.

If your car has a substantial defect, you must allow the manufacturer to make a reasonable number of attempts to repair the defect.

In California, your vehicle will qualify as a “lemon” if, within the first 18 months or 18,000 miles of purchasing a vehicle:

  •         there were 4 or more repair attempts for the same issue;
  •         there were 2 or more repair attempts to fix an issue that can cause injury or death;
  •         your vehicle is out of service for more than 30 days for any repairs;
  •         Problems to the vehicle are not the result of abuse by the owner.

If your car meets the criteria above, then the manufacturer has the responsibility to either:

  • Replace your vehicle;
  • Refund you for the vehicle’s purchase price.

But that’s not all! The law mandates that the manufacturer pays for the consumer’s attorney’s fees as well! Isn’t this great?


CA Lemon Law and Defective Used Cars

All Californian consumers with defective used cars out there, we have a great news for you! In California, your used car may also qualify for protection under the used car lemon law but only if you bought the defective used car with the manufacturer’s warranty (which is typically 3 years/36,000 miles, but can be more for some manufacturers).

Cars covered by California Used Car Lemon Law include:

  • Used cars or vehicles bought and used primarily for personal, family or household purposes.
  • Used cars or vehicles with a gross weight that is below 10,000 pounds and used primarily for business purposes where 5 or fewer vehicles are registered to the company.
  • Used cars or vehicles that sold with a written warranty.
  • Lemon cars or vehicles repurchased by a manufacturer and then resold to consumers with a manufacturer’s warranty covering the defects.

If your used car goes under one of these categories, first the manufacturer should attempt to repair the car or vehicle. If he fails to repair it after a reasonable number of attempts, the manufacturer should either repurchase or replace the vehicle or to compensate the owner of the defective vehicle.


Have a Lemon? We Can Help!

What to do if you believe the car manufacturer violated your consumer rights? It’s simple! Call us now at (818) 553-1000 and tell us about your lemon!

Our California lemon law attorneys at Margarian law firm will fight to get you a maximum compensation! We are looking forward to doing our very best for you!