Purchasing a car is one of the most expensive propositions most of us make after a house. According to the National Institute for Consumer Education, the average price of a new car is about $18,000. Some people can afford this price and many of look else where for less expensive alternatives, a used vehicle. They cost us a lower base price, Insurance generally costs less, they depreciate less than new cars do and it is easier to negotiate. Even a used, as the years pass is becoming increasingly complex on par with the technology growth in the auto industry. Used or new, we are at a loss with so many systems and processes to comprehend in a car. While the models of the cars available in the market are increasing manifolds, it puts us all in a state that we come to heavily rely on the advice and mercy of a car salesman. That is why we need the intervention of lemon laws, in case we are taken out on a long ride over a lemon car.

If you are living in the state of California and have bought yourself a car in the state of California, there are laws that protect you with your investment. The California lemon law for used cars provides legal protection for the owners of defective vehicles which meet the requirements of the California lemon law for used cars. If you have bought yourself a used, certified pre-owned car, truck, van, SUV or other vehicle that still has a manufacturer’s warranty, you will be entitled to protection under both the California used car lemon law and the Federal used car lemon law.

The California used car lemon law provides protection for anyone who has purchased or leased a used car or vehicle that is still covered by a manufacturer’s original factory warranty


  • The California used car lemon law also covers demonstrator vehicles, vehicles previously bought back under the California lemon law and resold with a manufacturer’s warranty
  • The California used car lemon law provides legal protection for any vehicle that has been certified
  • The California used car lemon law provides legal protection for any vehicle with an extended warranty for the manufacturer’s original warranty
  • The California used car lemon law provides compensation in the form of a refund, a replacement or cash compensation

The California used car lemon law covers:

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

The California used car lemon law – the Statutory warranty Period

There is a statutes of limitations of four years to file a lawsuit for breach of warranty.

The California used car lemon law applies:

  • During the entire period of a manufacturer’s warranty
  • After the original warranty if the vehicle has been certified
  • To a manufacturer’s extended warranty

If a vehicle is covered by a three year warranty and a defect or nonconformity is discovered two years from the warranty start date, the manufacturer is required by law to:

  • Either repurchase or replace the vehicle
  • Compensate the owner for the defective vehicle
  • Provide the manufacturer a reasonable number of attempts to repair the car or vehicle

The California used car lemon law provides the manufacturer and its authorized dealers with a reasonable number of attempts to repair the defect or nonconformity in a used car or vehicle under warranty.

A reasonable number of opportunities may be exceeded if the vehicle has experienced:

  • One to two repair attempts for a serious safety defect such as a brake failure
  • Two or more repair attempts for a recurring issue which is likely to cause death or serious bodily injury if the vehicle is driven
  • The same nonconformity or defect has been allowed four or more attempts but the defect continues to exist
  • The vehicle is in for warranty repairs for a total of 30 or more days

What would you do if you think that you have landed a California used lemon car

  • Document the repair orders that indicate the problem in your used lemon car
  • Notify the manufacturer of your car or vehicle of the defects and nonconformities, directly
  • Submit the warranty dispute to the arbitration program listed with the help of your California used car lemon law attorney, to improve your chances of receiving proper compensation

If you are not qualified for the California used car lemon law attorney you may still get protected by other laws of the State. If you feel that you have been duped by a California used car dealership, an experienced California lemon law attorney can review your documents.

If you are having problems with your certified used car or vehicle:

  • Get in touch with a California used car lemon law attorney and get to know your California lemon rights
  • Check with your California lemon law attorney for used cars for the best recourse available for you to claim, if you do not qualify for the California lemon protection for your used car
  • You may not have to pay out of your pocket and you will have the best chance for success if a California used car lemon law attorney represents you

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