Is my car a lemon?

Before making their decision to pursue the California Lemon Law through an attorney, many consumers will try to research the law themselves, to see if they even possibly qualify for the remedies afforded by the Song-Beverly Act. Upon reading the express language of the Song-Beverly and Tanner Consumer Protection Act (California’s Lemon Law), the phrases, “4 times within a year or 18,000 miles” will always initially jump out as the perceived requirements to qualify. Consequently, many people who have not had the same problem four times within a year or 18,000 miles may become dissuaded to pursue a claim under the Lemon Law even though they may certainly qualify. Don’t let this language fool you.

The California Lemon Law provides that a consumer may be entitled to a refund or replacement of their vehicle if the manufacturer, through its authorized dealers, are unable or unwilling to repair the vehicle within a reasonable number of attempts. The Lemon Law presumes that a reasonable number of attempts have occurred if the subject vehicle has been subject to repair 4 times for the same non-conformity within a year or 18,000 miles, whichever occurs first. But remember; this is only a presumption. A consumer may certainly qualify for lemon law remedies if they do not meet this presumption. In fact, many of our former and current clients have vehicles that qualify for the refund/replacement remedy that do not meet the presumption. Moreover, several consumers have vehicles that qualify for the repurchase/replacement remedy even when their problems occurred after a year or 18,000 miles.

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