How to Start a California Lemon Law Case - Consumer Information

Warranty Books

Automobile manufacturers will print warranty books that contain "instructions" for consumers that think they may have a lemon law vehicle that qualifies under California lemon law. Consumers must remember that these lemon law "instructions" or "steps to follow" are what the automobile manufacturer wants you to do, and is NOT the California lemon law. For example, many manufacturers warranty books will attempt to direct the consumer with a California lemon law claim to attend an arbitration hearing. Arbitration is NOT required under the California Lemon Law to pursue a lemon law claim. Nor is there any requirement under the California Lemon Law to bring a lemon law claim within 18 months or 18,000 miles. You as the consumer have the entire new vehicle limited warranty period (usually 3 years/36,000 miles or 4 years/50,000 miles) to bring your California lemon law claim. If the repeated problem continues AFTER the expiration of the warranty under the lemon law, in certain cases you may still be applicable to protection under the California lemon law. The California lemon law also uses the manufacturers "extra power-train warranty coverage" as lemon law protection for consumers. These "power-train" warranties often provide for repairs as long as 100,000 miles, and under the California lemon law can be utilized to qualify a vehicle as a "lemon".


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