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Are Pre-Owned Cars Covered Under Lemon Law?

check engine light

Unfortunately, it is more common for pre-owned cars to turn out to be lemons compared to new vehicles. If you purchased a pre-owned car that turned out to be a lemon, you might be wondering if California lemon laws protect you. Our Orange County lemon law attorneys explain if pre-owned vehicles are covered under lemon law.

Lemon Law & Pre-Owned Vehicles

California lemon law protects used cars if the vehicle was purchased or leased from a California car dealership during the original manufacturer’s warranty period.

If you purchased a used vehicle, it is covered under lemon law as long as:

  • It was purchased before it was three years old or had 36,000 miles
  • It was still covered under the original manufacturer’s warranty

This means that a used car typically only qualifies for protection under lemon law if it was sold with a warranty. If the manufacturer’s warranty didn’t come with the car, then the dealer must have provided a warranty for lemon law to apply.

California Lemon Law and Implied Warranty

If your vehicle has parts and components covered under your warranty and they continue to fail and cause substantial defects to your car, then the dealer needs to fix it within a reasonable number of attempts. They can also offer you a lemon law buyback if they can’t resolve the issue.

If you purchased your used car with any kind of warranty, California’s lemon law statute imposes an “implied warranty of merchantability.” This should last for the same period as the dealer’s warranty. The benefit of an implied warranty of merchantability is that it’s not limited to the specific parts and components covered by the dealer’s warranty.

Assisting with Pre-Owned Vehicle Lemons

If you purchased a pre-owned vehicle and it turned out to be a lemon, our team at O’Connor Law Group, P.C. can analyze your case and help you determine if you’re protected by lemon law.

Founded in 2003, we devote our time and resources to advocating for consumers and holding auto dealerships accountable for their negligence. We can help you determine if a fraudulent dealer sold you a lemon, and we can help you get the compensation you deserve

Contact O’Connor Law Group, P.C. today at (949) 390-9695 to schedule a virtual consultation!