Do all states have lemon laws?
Lemon laws are in existence in almost all states to protect car owners against dud cars. All fifty states have some kind of car lemon laws. Some states provide the most ideal lemon laws, while other states have received poor reviews of their lemon law due to meager enforcement.
We will look at the six states with the most ideal lemon laws, those that lack lemon laws, the ones that have enacted new lemon laws, and the best and the worst-ranked states in lemon laws.
Used Car Lemon Laws
Hawaii, Rhode Island, New Jersey, Massachusetts, New York, and Minnesota boast of the most ideal lemon laws. Each of these states has various coverage grouping depending on the age and odometer reading with a varying express limited warranty.
The following is a low mileage listing of each of the six states:
.Rhode Island- 2 months/ 3000 miles warranty for cars with a maximum of 36,000 miles
Minnesota- 2 months/ 2500 miles warranty for cars with a maximum of 36,000 miles
Hawaii- 3 months/ 5000 miles warranty for cars with a maximum of 25000 miles
New York- 3 months/ 4000 miles warranty for cars with a maximum of 36000 miles
Massachusetts- 3 months/ 3750 miles warranty for cars with a maximum of 40000 miles
New Jersey- 3 months/ 3000 miles warranty for cars with a maximum of 24000 miles
So far New Jersey and Rhode Island have been ranked by the Center for Auto Safety (CAS) as some of the states with the most ideal lemon laws. The ranking is based on factors such as:
The number of major repairs that should be attempted
If the statute covers attorney fees in the case, your car becomes a lemon car
The amount of time lost when your car is with the dealer
Availability of arbitration in the state
Availability of penalties against a manufacturer who violates the lemon law
States That Lack Lemon Laws
If you live in a state that does not have lemon laws, then the federal laws might apply to you. Some of the federal laws that apply to such states include:
The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act
This is the law that does not allow an implied warranty disclaimer when you buy a car with an express written warranty. The remarkable thing is that it also awards attorney fees in some cases.
The Uniform Commercial Code (UCC)
Under this code, when you buy a used car, it should automatically come with an implied warranty indicating that it is fit for use. Nonetheless, some used car dealers may repudiate the warranty and sell the vehicle with all faults.
You would be lucky if you live in Maryland, West Virginia, Columbia, and Massachusetts as the states do not permit dealers to disclaim implied warranties. Implied warranties make the UCC work better than in lemon laws.
The Federal Trade Commission’s Used Car Rule (FTC)
This federal law requires dealers that trade not less than five cars annually to post a buyer’s guide in each used car on sale. The guide should show if the cars on sale have an implied warranty or are “as is”.
If they have a warranty, then it must show the percentage of repair costs that the dealer covers and a record of vital flaws that might occur on the used cars.
New Vehicle Lemon Law
As earlier mentioned, most of the fifty states have new lemon laws. But how exactly does a new vehicle become a lemon?
When it faces major defects that damage its safety, use, or worth.
When your vehicle has stayed with the dealer for more than 30 days due to a sequence of issues rendering the car unusable for a long time
If your car is deemed a lemon, then the dealer has only two options, which include giving you another car or refunding your money less the mileage you had used before your car began experiencing issues.
In states with weak lemon laws such as Washington, the manufacturer might try to take you back and forth and charge you an exaggerated mileage fee for the miles driven.
Why Some States Rank Low When It Comes to Lemon Law
Some states have been lowly ranked when it comes to lemon laws. But why is this so? Well, it is because some do not impose penalties for breach of trust from the manufacturer’s side. Illinois is one such state, and you might have problems when filing a lemon law claim.
Other states such as Colorado, allow manufacturers to go after attorney fees from lemon law petitioners.
Kentucky, on the other hand, has a poor provision when it comes to curbing refunds and presumption in less than a year or 12000 miles. Moreover, some states such as Alabama extent the time if one of the repair trials materialize although the original period expired.