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The Lemon Law

WHAT IS THE LEMON LAW

The lemon law is an administrative proceeding which allows a purchaser of a defective vehicle to receive a refund or new vehicle. Under the New Jersey lemon law, the purchaser must prove the following:

  • The same problem has been repaired three or more times,
  • The existence of the problem affects the use, value, or safety of the vehicle.
  • The problem persists after the manufacturer's last chance repair.
  • The problem meets the lemon law mileage criteria.

Even if these criteria are not met, the consumer may file a claim for breach of express warranty (failure to fix the car under the warranty), breach of implied warranty (vehicle is not reasonably fit), or consumer fraud, (deception in the sale).

LEADING MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT THE LEMON LAW

  • If my case does not qualify for the lemon law there is little I can do:
    We regularly take cases that do not meet the lemon law criteria and file them in court. All purchasers of defective products have a legal right to compensation. We frequently take cases which do meet the mileage or repair criteria of the lemon law, bring them in court, and secure compensation or other relief for the buyer. We call these breach of warranty claims rather than lemon law cases.
  • I have three repairs for the same problem, so I know I qualify for the lemon law. No. Remember the problem must continue to exist and substantially impair use, value, or safety. Many people have significant problems with their cars, but once the problem has been fixed, they no longer have lemon law claims. They may still have breach of warranty claims which can be brought in court.
  • I have had many problems with the car so my case is very strong. The lemon law is written to provide relief for a particular problem which has been repair three or more times. There is no provision in the lemon law to combine several little problems to make one big one. Imagine a person going to a doctor. If he said, I have a bad cough, pain in my left heel, an itch in my arm, some trouble sleeping, and depression the doctor probably would not take any of the problems very seriously. Likewise, the consumer who says the car has brake problems, transmission problems, a water leak, and suspension problem trivializes any substantial problem he or she has.
  • Once you meet the lemon law criteria, you simply calculate the statutory formula for reimbursement. Remember that prevailing in a lemon law claim is not always an easy task. Therefore cases may be settled in a variety of ways to reduce the risk of an adverse decision. We will provide recommendations and advice, but the client will make the ultimate choice.

WARRANTY CASES OUTSIDE THE LEMON LAW

The New Jersey lemon law has various requirements. However, we have successfully brought many cases for breach of warranty which did not meet the criteria of the lemon law and secured monetary compensation for the problems the consumer had experienced.

New Jersey Lemon Law Links

Used Car Lemon Law And Fraud

New York Lemon Law

Odometer Rollbacks And Fraud

False Advertising and Representation

Chrysler

Land Rover

Ford

General Motors

Hyundai and Kia

Honda Jaguar Mazda

Suzuki and Subaru

Toyota

Volkswagen

Volvo

Other Manufacturers and Claims

Laws and Regulations

General consumer fraud and Non-automobile

Lemon Law Decisions And Boats

Credit Reposting And Collection

Consumer Fraud

Other Sites And Claims

QUALIFICATIONS AND EXPERIENCE OF THIS LAW OFFICE

Howard A. Gutman has successfully handled over 500 lemon law and automobile breach of warranty cases. Mr. Gutman is the author of a leading article on the lemon law in the New Jersey Law Journal, and recently gave a seminar for other attorneys on the lemon law for the New Jersey Institute of Continuing Legal Education. He also wrote the Year 2000 Legal Handbook, a book dealing with computer warranties, and is considered a leading authority on all types of warranties.

Prior to establishing his practice, Mr. Gutman was employed by one of the leading law firms in New Jersey and a prominent international law firm located in the Wall Street area. He has appeared on Good Day New Jersey been interviewed by NBC Nightly News and Newsday, and his cases have been profiled in the Star Ledger, Bureau of National Affairs Magazine, and New York Times.

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