In California, a vehicle is presumed to be a “lemon" if, within
18 months of the vehicle's delivery to the buyer (or 18,000 miles on the
- 2 or more attempts have been made by the manufacturer to repair a warranty
problem that could result in death or serious injury; OR
- The manufacturer has attempted to repair the vehicle at least 4 times; OR
- The car has been out of service for more than a total of 30 days due to
warranty problem repairs. Problems must not be the result of abuse by
the owner, and they must significantly reduce the use, value, or safety
of the vehicle.
If your car qualifies as a lemon, the manufacturer has the responsibility
- Replacing your vehicle
- Refunding you for the vehicle's purchase price
The California Lemon Law applies to
used vehicles if the repair visits occurred within the original or extended warranty
period. However, automobile manufacturers are obligated to repair defects
and are allowed a “reasonable” opportunity to do so. Therefore,
if you take your vehicle to an independent repair shop rather than the
authorized dealer, you may lose your right to a refund or replacement.
What qualifies as a “reasonable” number of attempts depends
on the nature of the defect. The exact number of repair attempts allowed
is determined by multiple factors, particularly the seriousness of the
defect. The manufacturer’s may claim the problems your vehicle is
experiencing are minor, and, therefore, you are not entitled to a refund
What Can You Expect from Negotiation or Litigation?
Team OLG will work tirelessly to secure the best possible result for your
case. We will also take the time to inform you of what you can expect,
whether we negotiate out of court or take your case to trial.
We have years of experience litigating lemon law cases. We are not afraid
of advocating for your rights in a court of law if negotiation fails to
secure the result you deserve.
Here are a few possible results of your lemon law case:
A “buyback” or a “repurchase” of your lemon - This is usually handled locally. If your case is considered a strong one
by the manufacturer, it may occur within 2-4 weeks of your original call
to this office.
A replacement vehicle -This is also handled locally, but it is highly discouraged. You may end
up with another lemon AND it may take much longer than a refund.
A cash settlement - Some lemon law cases are borderline and may just be worth a nuisance settlement
with the manufacturer. Those few cases may be settled for a partial refund
of the original purchase price. The owner may then choose to keep, sell,
or trade the defective vehicle.
If your lemon was a new motor vehicle, you may be entitled to receive any
payments you made on the vehicle. You may also receive compensation for
expenses like taxes, title and registration fees, and repairs and towing
costs. They may also cover your court and attorney fees.
With either repurchase or replacement, however, the manufacturer may be
entitled to a relatively small credit. This credit would be for the mileage
driven on the vehicle before it was first taken in for warranty defect repair.
Did you buy or lease a lemon in California?
Contact Team OLG at
(949) 390-9695 for immediate support today.