California Lemon Law requires that automobile manufacturers provide customers with a way to settle differences over car claims. In your car owner’s manual, there will likely be contact information for an arbitrator. Most California manufacturers use the Better Business Bureau Auto line to settle claims.
When you contact the manufacturer, they will send you to the Better Business Bureau’s Auto Line. From there, you fill out a claim form and provide any documents that support your case. Your claim gets forwarded to the manufacturer, who then has to respond with how they plan to resolve the issue.
When you receive the response, you decide if it is satisfactory. If it is, then your arbitration goes no further, and you receive the benefits that were decided upon, thanks to the requirements of lemon law.
If you are unsatisfied with what the manufacturer proposes, then the Better Business Bureau will start the formal arbitration process. The arbitration through the Better Business Bureau Auto Line is free.
When you are in arbitration, you will be given the opportunity to explain the details of your lemon law claim to an impartial judge in the Better Business Bureau offices. It is in your best interest to bring along any documents that might support your claims concerning routine maintenance, vehicle warranty sort out work, and correspondence with the manufacturer over your lemon law claim.
Within 40 days of your arbitration hearing, your case will be decided upon. If you are still unhappy with the results, you can take your case to formal court with a lemon law attorney. If the manufacturer is unhappy that they are required to replace your vehicle or refund your money- too bad for them as they are legally bound to the decision of the arbitrator!
Requirements to Qualify for Lemon Law Protection
While every state has it’s own specific list of requirements to meet in order to obtain protection under lemon law, the requirements are similar. California Lemon Law covers both new and used vehicles, as well as motor homes.
There must be a problem with the vehicle that exists within the first year, or within the first 12,000 of your automobile warranty period. You must have attempted to get it fixed by the manufacturer. The problem must be one that is not fixed within a sensible number of attempts, or one that would possibly cause danger or prevent you from using your vehicle to be covered under lemon law.
If these circumstances are met, than you probably can get a replacement vehicle or refund as provided by California Lemon Law. If your vehicle has been taken to the distribution outlet for the same problem four times, or your vehicle has been held at the dealership for a cumulative total of 30 days or more, you get a replacement vehicle or refund.
Additionally, in some other states, lemon law also provides for incidental fees related to the case to be payed for by the manufacturer/dealer.