The lemon law may be known to many people as applying to new vehicles, but people ask themselves, “does the lemon law apply to certified used cars?” Generally speaking, the lemon law does apply to certified used cars, but there are other factors such as warranty that may affect the outcome of a lemon law case. These warranties may include the manufacturer’s warranty and a dealer’s warranty.
If you purchased a certified used car and think you may have a lemon car, it is best to contact a lemon law lawyer to discuss your potential lemon law case.
Can a Certified Pre-owned Car be a Lemon?
For the lemon law to apply to certified used cars, the federal law requires all certified pre-owned vehicles for sale to have a Buyer’s Guide indicating the vehicle’s warranty. This would also include options on the vehicle and issues that have arisen with the vehicle. Many people believe that an extended warranty purchase will cover them under the lemon law, but this is untrue. These extra warranties provided by the dealer are only as a service contract for your vehicle to be fixed by third parties if your vehicle breaks down and not a promise that the vehicle will be in good standing.
In the states, there are two ways where the lemon law applies to a certified used car. The first and most important is the express written warranty provided by the manufacturer when purchasing from the dealer. The second way where the lemon law applies to a certified used car is if it came with a dealer’s warranty.
Purchasing a pre-owned car within less than 36,000 miles on the odometer or 3 years of its manufacturer assembly date should qualify under the warranty with the original manufacturer. That said, a certified pre-owned vehicle can be deemed a lemon if these factors are in place. Other factors include if the manufacturer extends a warranty because of a recall on the vehicle.
When purchasing a pre-owned car, the biggest problem is that it’s used and it may be hard to know if the lemon law applies to your vehicle with other options other than being under the manufacturer’s warranty. Thankfully, if you live in California, the California Lemon Law requires dealers to provide a 30-day/1,000-mile warranty for any certified used vehicle leased or sold. Most of these warranties are short-lasting from 30 days to 3 months. With this section warranty option, you have some trust in buying a pre-owned vehicle from the dealer knowing you are able to apply a warranty or deem the vehicle as a lemon.
Qualifications Under the Warranty for Certified Used Cars
For a vehicle to be listed by the dealer as a “certified used car” and qualify as a lemon car, it must provide some type of warranty with the sale of the vehicle. When a dealer represents a used car as “certified”, they know they have to provide high standards for the vehicle. This includes accurately showing the car’s odometer, showing the vehicle’s history with no sustainable frame/body damage, and no prior repurchase of a vehicle under the state lemon law.
When purchasing a used certified car, you are sure the dealer has done a full inspection and you are safe with the lemon law since you are covered under the manufacturer and dealer warranties. Used vehicles may include personal cars, RVs, trucks, and boats.
The Lemon Law entitles you to a full refund if you bought a certified used vehicle and the following qualifications under the warranty are made:
- The warranty is in good standing, whether it’s the dealer’s warranty or the manufacturer’s warranty.
- You purchased the vehicle from an authorized dealer and it is mentioned as a “certified used car” for sale.
- The vehicle you want to deem a lemon has defects beyond repair.
- The vehicle has spent multiple days and attempts for repair at the dealership.
Learn more about the lemon law for used cars.
Consulting With an Attorney For Your Certified Used Car
The lemon law involving certified used cars can be a little complicated and confusing for a consumer. There are multiple laws in place to protect the consumer when purchasing a vehicle, but the best recommendation would be to seek a professional lemon law attorney. We help certified used car buyers that have made reasonable repair attempts by demanding the manufacturer either fix the vehicle or provide a full refund of the vehicle purchase.
At Consumer Action Law Group, we are dedicated to helping your lemon law case. Call our experienced lemon law attorneys today at (818) 254-8413 for free legal advice. We will take the stress, and worry out of dealing with your used vehicle.