In some states, the Lemon Laws cover used cars under certain conditions. Even though a used car is far more likely to be a lemon, the federal statute does not apply; federal Lemon Laws apply to new vehicles only. There is an exception; if the used car was sold with an express written warranty, then the federal law may apply. Usually, the express written warranty includes what is left on the manufacturer’s new car warranty or a separate warranty purchased from the dealer when the car was delivered.
Some states have a Lemon Law for used cars:
The frequency of consumer complaints has caused six states to date to pass Lemon Law used cars laws. The used car Lemon laws that are in effect provide a statutory warranty, usually tied to the age of the car or the mileage on the odometer. Just like the law that applies to new cars, if the used car should exhibit a serious problem while under warranty, the used car dealer is given an opportunity to do repairs. If, after several tries, the problem cannot be fixed, the dealer is obliged to refund the money you paid or provide a replacement car.
For those used car buyers who do not reside in one of the six states with a used car Lemon Law, there are federal laws that might give some relief.
Be prepared with facts:
For you to take advantage of the Lemon Law for used cars, you must have built a solid argument based on facts. Always get the history report on the vehicle. They often expose serious defects or the fact that the vehicle has been involved in an accident or damaged by floodwaters.
Take the car to your mechanic, have it put on a lift, and have the mechanic check carefully for any signs of structural damage.
If the dealer does not give you satisfaction, even though you are armed with details pointing to the fact the car is a lemon, hire a qualified Lemon Law attorney to fight for your rights.
Lemon Law used cars are not applicable in every state, but even at that, when safety is an issue, a seasoned Lemon Law attorney can help you. To discuss your situation, contact Krohn & Moss, Ltd. Consumer Law Center®.