What makes a problematic vehicle a “lemon” under the law?

| Oct 8, 2020 | Lemon Law

When we purchase a new car from a dealer, we have the right to expect the vehicle to conform and perform to the expectations advertised by the manufacturer, as well as the dealership. However, many cars do roll off the assembly line with problems that were not caught in the manufacturer’s quality assurance checks, or perhaps were damaged in delivery or before getting onto the showroom floor. When a car fails to meet quality expectations, it may be classified as a lemon under Connecticut’s lemon law protections, giving the buyer legal rights.

In many cases, there are glitches or minor things wrong that need to be fixed one time. Other times people will need to bring the car back multiple times, and there may even be times when it seems like the first problem is never really fixed. This obviously should not happen with a new car. In these cases, the car could be considered to be a “lemon” and people may be able to get their money back or a new car.

What qualifies a car as a lemon under the law?

Not every new car that needs to have repairs is considered a lemon. To be considered to be a lemon, it must meet certain requirements laid out in the law. One is that the defect substantially affects the safety or use of the car. People also need to make a reasonable number of attempts to fix the problem.

The defects generally must occur and be reported to the manufacturer within the first two years of purchase or the first 24,000 miles – whichever occurs first. Also, generally a reasonable amount of attempts to fix a problem typically means four or more attempts to fix the problem within the first two years or 24,000 miles, which forces the car to be out of service for a total of 30 days within those time periods.

Buying a new vehicle in Connecticut is usually a major purchase for people, and when these big purchases are made we all really expect they will operate as they are suppose to operate. When it comes to new cars people may be able to get a refund or new car under lemon laws. Experienced attorneys understand the requirements and may be able to help those with similar issues with a new vehicle assess their situation and seek the best course of action.