Alaska Lemon Law FAQs

FAQs About Your Lemon Law Rights

How We Can Help Your Lemon Law Situation?

It is estimated that more than 150,000 cars annually, or about one percent of all new cars, are cons...

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It is estimated that more than 150,000 cars annually, or about one percent of all new cars, are considered lemons. Although state and federal lemon laws vary, a lemon is generally considered any vehicle that has repeated defects or non-conformities that cannot be repaired after a reasonable time or a reasonable number of attempts. If you want to take advantage of state and federal lemon laws for car purchases, it’s important to understand what qualifies as a lemon and what steps you need to take to put yourself in the best position to receive maximum possible relief under the law. The attorneys at Krohn & Moss, Ltd. Consumer Law Center® have worked in this area of law since 1995 and can help you assess your claims and counsel you on the best course of action for moving forward. Should you qualify for relief, we will do our best to ensure that you settle your claims for what the law entitles, which may be a refund for your car, a replacement vehicle, or monetary compensation in other instances. We will also not charge you a fee unless you win or settle your case.

FAQs About Your Lemon Law Rights

What is a reasonable number of repair attempts to repair my car?

Before being able to reap the benefits of the lemon law, you must allow the manufacturer or dealer t...

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Before being able to reap the benefits of the lemon law, you must allow the manufacturer or dealer to make a reasonable number of attempts or you must provide them with a reasonable time to fix the issues before your vehicle may be considered a lemon. Although every state law varies, most states require that the consumer provide the manufacturer or its dealers with at least3 times or 30 days to fix a vehicle defect or non-conformity. In some states, as little as 1 repair attempt may be sufficient to deem a car a lemon if the defect is something that affects the safety of the vehicle.

FAQs About Your Lemon Law Rights

What are types of defects that are covered by lemon laws?

Most state lemon laws require that for the car owner or lessee to recover, they must prove that the ...

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Most state lemon laws require that for the car owner or lessee to recover, they must prove that the defect or non-conformity substantially impairs the use, value or safety of the vehicle. Every situation is unique and a defect that you might not ordinarily think is substantial, very well might be depending on how it affects you. For instance, even something that is seemingly as minor as the illumination of a light on your dash board might signify a larger problem. Or, something like a brake squeak might be substantial if it affects your use and enjoyment of the vehicle every time you get behind the wheel. It is for this reason that you should speak to an experienced lemon law attorney who may assess your rights and tell you their opinion on what you may recover. Keep in mind, that the federal Lemon Law has no requirement that the defects in the vehicle be substantial. Rather, the federal Act looks to the obligations of the manufacturer to repair your vehicle as detailed in your warranty. Notably, the typical car manufacturer’s warranty promises to repair all defects in materials and workmanship in the vehicle. It does not restrictcoverage to only “substantial” defects. Therefore, even minor defects are covered under the federal Act if the manufacturer,by and through its dealers, was unable to repair the vehicle after being afforded a reasonable opportunity to do so.

When you drive off the lot of the car dealership in your brand new car, you have every right and every reason to expect that vehicle to be in perfect working order. As too many consumers have learned however, this is not always the case. In far too many cases, a consumer learns in the weeks and months that follow the purchase or lease of a new car that they have purchased a “lemon” – a car with a defect, or multiple defects, that simply cannot be properly repaired.

Fortunately both Alaska State Law and Federal Law provide protection to consumers who purchase “lemons.” Between the Alaska Lemon Law and the Federal Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act (sometimes called the “Federal Lemon Law”), citizens in the State of Alaska have many important rights and remedies if they received a “lemon” instead of a wonderful new car.

Covered Vehicles

Generally speaking, the Alaska Lemon Law covers consumer vehicles. Specifically, this means that the Alaska Lemon Law covers motor vehicles that are primarily used for personal, family, or household use. The law only applies to vehicles required to be registered in Alaska and does not apply to tractors, other farm vehicles or other off-road vehicles. Further, the Alaska Lemon Law does not apply to most used cars. However, the Federal Lemon Law extends to all consumer products which are sold with a warranty – including vehicles that are not covered by the Alaska Lemon Law as well as other consumer goods such as household appliances and electronics. If your new car is suffering from problems or defects, whether safety related or otherwise, an experienced Alaska Lemon Law Attorney at Krohn & Moss, Ltd. Consumer Law Center® can help you to determine whether to seek relief under the Alaska Lemon Law, the Federal Lemon Law or both.

Covered defects

Unfortunately, not every problem in a new car qualifies for protection under the Alaska Lemon Law. The Alaska Lemom Law covers any “nonconformity” which under the Alaska Lemon Law means a problem or defect with the car which is covered by the manufacturer’s warranty and substantially impairs the use or market value of the vehicle. To substantially impair the use of the car under the Alaska Lemon Law, the problem must prevent the consumer from using the car or make it unsafe to drive. To substantially impair the market value of the car under the Alaska Lemon Law, the problem must substantially decrease its dollar value, as compared to a similar car which does not suffer from the same problem or problems. To qualify, the defects must occur and be reported within the first year from the date of purchase or lease.

Again, however, the Federal Lemon Law often provides additional protections. To qualify for relief under the Federal Lemon Law, a problem need not be “substantial.” Instead, any problem which is covered under the manufacturer’s warranty is covered under federal law. In addition, the Federal Lemon Law extends to the entire period of the manufacturer’s warranty.

Reasonable number of repair attempts

If a manufacturer sells or leases you a new car which qualifies as a “lemon” under the Alaska Lemon Law, its primary duty is to repair the vehicle. It is often the case, however, that the problems cannot truly be repaired – they continue to recur, or additional problems continue to develop. Thus, a consumer is entitled to relief once he has allowed the manufacturer a “reasonable number of repair attempts.”

Under the Alaska Lemon Law, you are presumed to have given the manufacturer a reasonable chance to repair the car if the manufacturer has tried and failed to fix the same problem three (3) or more times, or if the total repair time for all the qualifying defects extends to thirty (30) or more business days, which need not all be in a row.

After the automobile manufacturer has been provided with “a reasonable number of repair attempts,” the consumer must then provide the manufacturer with written notice and one (1) final opportunity to repair the defect(s). The notice must be sent by certified mail and must meet certain technical requirements. In addition, if the manufacturer has established a government-approved arbitration or mediation procedure, the consumer must participate in this program before bringing suit. An experienced Alaska Lemon Law Lawyer at Krohn & Moss, Ltd. Consumer Law Center® can help you to navigate these requirements without compromising your rights and claims.

Available Remedies

If a manufacturer fails to comply with its obligations under the Alaska Lemon Law, it then must either repurchase or replace the vehicle, whichever the consumer chooses. If the consumer elects to have the manufacturer repurchase the vehicle, then the manufacturer must pay the full, original price of the vehicle, including all fees such as registration and transportation fees, dealer-installed options and dealer preparation, but may deduct a reasonable mileage allowance, as defined by the law, for the consumer’s use of the vehicle. Under certain circumstances, the consumer may be entitled to additional compensation as well. If the consumer elects a replacement vehicle, the Alaska Lemon Law requires the manufacturer to provide a comparable new vehicle.

Call Krohn & Moss, Ltd. Consumer Law Center® or submit your information to us online to see if you qualify for relief under the state or federal lemon law. You may be entitled to a refund, a replacement vehicle or cash compensation for your “sour lemon.” Over 97% of our cases settle without going to trial and we will work diligently to get your claim settled as quickly as possible.

We have handled thousands of claims for both lemon automobiles and consumer products.
And work with Alaska attorneys associated with Krohn & Moss, Ltd. Consumer Law Center® in of-counsel relationships to handle lemon law claims for consumers in Alaska. We stay informed of the newest legal developments so we can get you the best results for your lemon law claim.

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