Is My Car A Lemon?

Your car may be declared a lemon after going through arbitration if it meets all of the following conditions:
  • it has a nonconformity (a defect, malfunction, or condition)
  • the nonconformity is covered by the manufacturer`s express warranty
  • the nonconformity SUBSTANTIALLY impairs the use, market value, or safety of the car
  • the nonconformity is not the result of an accident, abuse, neglect, or alteration of the car by persons other than the manufacturer or its authorized dealer
  • you tried to get the nonconformity repaired by the manufacturer`s authorized dealer during the Lemon Law Rights Period
  • you sent written notification (preferably by certified mail, return receipt requested) to the manufacturer (not the dealer) of the nonconformity during the Lemon Law Rights Period*
  • you gave the manufacturer or its authorized dealer a reasonable opportunity to repair the nonconformity during the Lemon Law Rights Period
  • you filed a request for arbitration with the State Certified Arbitration Program within one year after the Lemon Law Rights Period expired

* If you did not receive a Lemon Law Statement of Rights from the dealership when you purchased the vehicle, you are not required to write to the manufacturer although it is a good idea to do so anyway. If you did not receive a Lemon Law Statement of Rights, include that information when you submit your paperwork for arbitration.

The information on this page is meant to provide a general overview of the law. The laws in your state and/or city may deviate significantly from those described here. If you have specific questions related to your situation you should speak with a local attorney.

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