It is estimated that more than 150,000 cars annually, or about one percent of all new cars, are cons...read more
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.
Before being able to reap the benefits of the lemon law, you must allow the manufacturer or dealer t...read more
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.
Most state lemon laws require that for the car owner or lessee to recover, they must prove that the ...read more
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.
The Colorado Lemon Law provides important protection for Colorado consumers stuck with less-than-perfect “new” cars commonly referred to as “lemons.” Like most state lemon laws, Colorado law protects consumers when manufacturers refuse to, or are unable to, repair the defects in their new cars, and refuse to replace or repurchase the defective vehicle. The Colorado Lemon Law, in combination with the Federal Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act (sometimes called the Federal Lemon Law), allows Colorado car buyers to feel secure in the knowledge that even if they do not get what they bargained for, their vehicle’s manufacturer can be forced to make things right.
The Colorado Lemon Law covers only certain types of motor vehicles. The law extends to private passenger vehicles, pickup trucks and vans which are designed for road travel and which seat ten (10) people or less. The Colorado Lemon Law does not extend to motor homes or any vehicle which travels on three (3) or fewer wheels, such as motorcycles.
However, vehicles which do not qualify for protection under Colorado law may still eligible for protection under the Federal Lemon Law. The Federal Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, which is also applicable in Colorado, extends to all consumer vehicles, as well as other consumer products, such as household appliances and electronics.
The Colorado Lemon Law covers any defect or problem with a vehicle which substantially impairs the use or market value of that vehicle. The law refers to these problems as nonconformities. To give rise to a claim under the Colorado Lemon Law, a nonconformity must occur and be reported within the warranty period of the car, or within one (1) year from the date on which the purchaser received the car, whichever comes first.
It is important to note that not every problem or defect in a new car gives rise to a claim under the Colorado Lemon Law. It is only those nonconformities that are “substantial,” or cause very serious problems. Much like the types of vehicles covered, however, the Federal Lemon Law provides additional, broader protection. Federal law applies to any defect or problem covered by a warranty, no matter how “insubstantial” it may be. Thus, while the Colorado Lemon Law applies to major issues like brakes and steering, the Federal Lemon Law can also be used to bring claims related to extras, trim, and other cosmetic issues. An experienced Colorado Lemon Law attorney at Krohn & Moss, Ltd. Consumer Law Center® can help you to determine whether the problems with your car give rise to a claim under the Colorado Lemon Law, the Federal Lemon Law or both.
Before bringing a claim under the Colorado Lemon Law, the purchaser must allow the manufacturer (through its dealers) a “reasonable number of attempts” to repair any nonconformities. The Colorado Lemon Law presumes that the manufacturer has been given a reasonable opportunity to repair the problems if it has tried, and failed, to fix the problem four (4) times, or if the car has been out of service for repairs for a total of thirty (30) days (even if those days were not consecutive). These presumptions, however, only apply if a manufacturer first receives written notice from the consumer via certified mail before seeking a remedy in a court of law.
Under the Colorado Lemon Law, if the manufacturer fails to repair the defective vehicle after a “reasonable number of attempts,” the consumer is entitled to either a refund of the purchase price (less a deduction for the consumer’s use) or a replacement vehicle. If the manufacturer opts to refund the purchase price, they reacquire the defective vehicle, but must also repay incidental fees, such as sales tax, registration charges, and finance charges.
However, in addition to sending notice to the manufacturer via certified mail, before obtaining any relief under the Colorado Lemon, consumers must comply with any eligible arbitration or mediation procedures which the manufacturer has put in place. The Colorado Lemon Law also has deadlines in which a legal claim must be filed which is within six (6) months of the expiration of the vehicle warranty or one (1) year from the date on which the purchaser received the car.
These deadlines, and the deadlines and procedures associated with the manufacturer’s arbitration procedures, are strictly enforced and the failure to understand the rules can cost you your claim under the Colorado Lemon Law. This is just one (1) of many reasons why it is important to consult with an experienced lemon law attorney at Krohn & Moss, Ltd. Consumer Law Center® as soon as possible after you discover the problems with your new vehicle.
Call Krohn & Moss, Ltd. Consumer Law Center® or submit your information to us online to see if you qualify under the Colorado Lemon Law or the Federal Lemon Law. You could be entitled to a refund, a replacement vehicle or cash compensation. Over 97% of our cases settle without going to trial and will work hard to get your claim settled as quickly as possible.
We work with Colorado attorneys in an “of-counsel” relationship to handle lemon law claims for consumers in Colorado. We stay informed of the newest legal developments so you can get the best results for your lemon law claim.
Watch this short video to learn how auto manufactures can compensate you for your Lemon.
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