The last thing anyone expects when they purchase a new vehicle is to be handed the keys to a lemon. While most consumers are able to happily drive their new car off the lot and enjoy it for years, not everyone is so lucky. Thankfully, California has a lemon law put into place for consumer protection against the sale of faulty vehicles. Ultimately, a California Lemon Law Buyback protects consumers from having to swallow the cost of defective vehicles. If you’ve found yourself in this unfortunate situation, read on to learn more about California Lemon Law Buybacks and follow the seven steps below to help get yourself through the whole lemon law buyback process.
What is a Lemon Law Buyback?
In California, the lemon law buyback protects individuals who purchase a car, truck, or SUV under warranty. If the vehicle develops one or more defects while under warranty, the consumer may be eligible for a California Lemon Law Buyback. Understand that a vehicle under warranty is only eligible for buyback if the manufacturer cannot repair the defects in a reasonable number of attempts or if the vehicle is at a dealership for many days to repair one or more defects and it is still having problems.
If your vehicle is eligible for a California Lemon Law Buyback, its manufacturer has two options.
- Replace the defective vehicle.
- Buy back the defective vehicle.
Ideally, the consumer and manufacturer will come to an agreement on whether to provide a replacement vehicle or money back. If the manufacturer provides the consumer with a replacement vehicle that includes all warranties for full protection. The manufacturer must also cover taxes, licensing fees, and registration on the replacement vehicle. In either situation, the manufacturer provides all legal fees from filing the case.
Unfortunately, lemon law claims are rarely a cut and dry process. If it comes down to a buyback, the manufacturer must pay the consumer the entire amount paid for the automobile, minus the mileage offset. This compensation is intended to repay the down payment on the vehicle, any monthly payments made toward the vehicle, and to pay off the remaining loan on the vehicle.
Seven Steps to Help Navigate the Lemon Law Buyback Process
Ultimately, lemon law claims are rarely an easy process. If you’ve found yourself in this situation, it’s in your best interest to work with a qualified Lemon Car Lawyer to achieve the best possible outcome in your claim. To make your lemon law claim a more manageable process, follow the seven steps listed below.
1. Take Your Car to an Authorized Dealership
If you think that you have a lemon, the first thing you have to do is take your defective vehicle to the manufacturer’s dealership immediately and give the dealership the chance to repair your vehicle. You need to allow a dealership or dealerships the chance to fix the vehicle at least two times before filing a lemon law claim unless your vehicle remains at the dealership for 30 or more days cumulatively.
2. Keep a Record of All Your Repair Attempts
To make your case more credible, you need to keep good records of all repair attempts on the defective vehicle. Not having good records of the warranty and work performed on the vehicle can significantly delay you pursuing your claim.
3. Find a Reputable Lemon Law Attorney
Once you’ve had your defective vehicle worked on without success, it’s time to contact a California lemon law attorney. An experienced attorney will be able to help you determine what your next steps should be and ultimately can help you successfully navigate the complex steps of the lemon law buyback process. If your lemon law claim is successful, the auto manufacturer will have to pay your attorney fees, not you.
4. File a Claim
Once you find a reputable lemon law attorney, they will be able to file a lemon law claim, informing the auto manufacturer that you want a buyback.
5. Determine What the Terms of the Buyback Are
Manufacturers will often try to deny lemon law claims. However, by working with an experienced lemon law attorney, you will be well represented in your claims. If you indeed have a lemon, your lawyer will be able to validate your claims and negotiate clear buyback terms with the manufacturer.
6. Return the Defective Vehicle to the Dealership
Once your lawyer has arranged a clear agreement on the buyback terms with the manufacturer, it’s time to return the defective vehicle to the dealership.
7. Receive Payment from the Manufacturer
After all the negotiations have been made and you’ve returned the defective vehicle to the manufacturer, it’s finally time to get reimbursed for the money you spent on the lemon vehicle. You can use this money to purchase a different car or spend it as you would like, there are no stipulations on how you use your compensation.
Consult with a California Lemon Law Attorney Today
Lemon law claims can be a difficult process to navigate alone. To achieve the best possible outcome in your lemon law claim, call a Lemon Car Lawyer today.