You purchased a new car and received a bulk of issues with it, whether it’s brakes or the steering, then you are probably driving a lemon. If the car is still under warranty and has significant defects that impair its use and safety, you will likely be entitled to a lemon law buyback. The California lemon law establishes two options lemon law owners can benefit from:
- A replacement of the defective vehicle.
- A buyback of the defective vehicle.
If you choose lemon law buyback as the most appropriate way of solving your lemon car issue, then California Civil Code Section 1793 states that the buyback includes payment for 1) all the money paid for the car or truck, (2) the license and registration fees, and (3) the amount of any California sales tax paid in the vehicle purchase or lease. This means that if you bought a vehicle or leased a car, you will be reimbursed for your down payment and be paid for the unused portion of your current registration.
Vehicle Buyback Amount Under California Lemon Law
Under California lemon law, when a manufacturer buys your car back it must pay you the buyback amount less a “mileage offset.” The vehicle buyback amount includes the whole amount paid or payable for the vehicle, meaning that the manufacturer must compensate you for your down payment and all of your monthly payments. The vehicle buyback amount must also include compensation for transportation charges, along with manufacturer-installed option charges. The manufacturer is also required to reimburse you for registration fees, license fees, sales tax.
Additionally, the manufacturer is obliged to pay you for incidental damages. Incidental damages basically include repair costs, prepayment penalties, towing fees, rental car expenses, early termination charges. To get compensation for incidental damages, it is recommended to keep track of all paperwork, records, and invoices related to the vehicle’s repairs and issues.
The manufacturer is to pay the total lemon buyback amount, minus the usage fee. The usage fee represents the number of miles the lemon owner was able to drive prior to the first time the car was taken in for repairs. Here is the formula for usage fee calculation:
(miles driven)(total life of a car in miles)x price of the car=usage fee.
Talk to a California Lemon Law Lawyer
Getting the compensation you are entitled by law for your lemon car can often seem like an uphill battle. Manufacturers usually have strong legal defense and will take every step to unnecessarily delay the process. If you have a defective car, the issue is to be solved as soon as possible not to put you at risk. Consulting an experienced California lemon law lawyer will speed up the process and increase your chances of getting a remedy for your lemon vehicle significantly. Note that, once your car is officially deemed as lemon, the manufacturer is obliged to pay all the legal fees.
The experienced and skillful lemon law lawyers at the Margarian law firm have dealt with numerous lemon cases for years and know what it takes to proceed lemon buyback quickly and effectively. Our knowledgeable lawyers specialize in lemon law lawsuits and offer free initial consultation to determine your chances of getting proper compensation for your lemon car.