The California Lemon Law Lawyers at Young & Young APC aggressively represent clients throughout California. If you have purchased or leased a vehicle in California that is defective or has been subject to multiple repair attempts, you need to contact a California Lemon Law firm today. You may be entitled to a replacement vehicle, refund or cash settlement.
Dodge is one of the oldest and most instantly recognized car brands in the United States and around the world. Almost 100 years ago, the owner of Chrysler purchased the Dodge Brothers car manufacturing company and began producing some of the most memorable car models in automotive history. Now, many decades later, some Dodge vehicles have annoying and even dangerous defects and reliability issues that qualify them as lemons under California law. California’s Lemon Law Statute describes lemons as vehicles with the following issues:
If your Dodge has any of the above issues and had repair attempts covered under warranty, it may be covered by California’s lemon law. You may have a valid claim for compensation for the amount you’ve paid toward your car, loan payoff, plus incidental amounts related to having a car in the repair shop, as well as legal fees.
Reported Dodge lemon law issues include: Engine, Suspension, Transmission, Steering, Cooling System, and Air Bags.
Some common lemon law complaints against these vehicles come from multiple vehicle systems. Common complaints brought forward against Dodge include:
Buying or leasing a new car should be an exciting and rewarding experience – the last thing you expect is to end up with repeated visits to the dealership. At Young & Young APC, we understand the hardship and financial stress that a defective vehicle can cause. Our Lemon Law attorneys are committed to providing you with the utmost professional service and we will fight for the compensation you deserve.
If your Dodge meets the lemon law criteria in California, you’re entitled to a full refund, buyback, or replacement vehicle. If the court orders Dodge to issue a refund, you’ll gain back the vehicle’s purchase price including your down payment and sales tax as well as refunds for rental cars, towing, and other significant expenses related to the vehicle’s defects. If you receive a replacement vehicle instead of a cash refund, it must be one that’s similar to the subject lemon vehicle.
California is one of several states that allow owners of leased cars and used cars to file lemon law claims. The compensation for these types of claims is different than that for vehicles purchased outright while they’re new. Those who’ve bought a lemon gain back the amount they’ve paid toward the vehicle, plus any loan payoff, and payment of legal fees. If you’ve leased a Dodge and it meets California’s criteria for lemon law claims, the dealer must buy out the remainder of the lease and reimburse you for the amount you’ve already paid as well as your legal fees.
To make a lemon law claim on a used Dodge vehicle, the car must have been purchased with a written manufacturer warranty and had repair attempts covered under the original manufacturer warranty. Lemon laws for used vehicles in California only apply to cars that were not sold “as is.” If you bought your car “as is” you effectively sign away your right to reimbursement for any mechanical failures you discover.
Large, powerful car manufacturers like Dodge use powerful defense law firms to try to avoid paying lemon law claims or to minimize the payouts. Some common tactics these companies might use to avoid paying your claim include the following:
If you’re tired of your Dodge spending more time in the repair shop than in your garage or on the road, it’s best to request a consultation with a California lemon law attorney before dealing with the issue through the manufacturer or dealership. Our firm has years of experience in lemon laws and understands the tactics commonly used by powerful manufacturers so we can help defend your rights.
Many times, car owners dealing with a lemon contact the manufacturer first, including Dodge, only to find the manufacturer steering them toward arbitration rather than pursuing the lemon law process. Dodge and other car manufacturers may present this as the easiest choice for a fast resolution. But there are several reasons to think twice about choosing arbitration rather than filing a lemon law claim. In arbitration, an arbitrator paid by the manufacturer reviews your case to find a solution. They may order specific repairs or agree to issue a partial refund. As a consumer, it pays to be wary of a team of arbitrators paid by the very manufacturer you’re appealing to for a full refund or buyback. Though Dodge and other manufacturers may claim that arbitration is accomplished through a neutral third party—such as the BBB Auto Line—that claim is misleading since these arbitrators depend on manufacturers to send them business.
Other automotive arbitration organizations are actually created by the manufacturers. If you think these arbitration organizations might not have your best interests as their highest priority if they work for or with auto manufacturers you’d be right.
If the arbitration panel—chosen by the manufacturer—decides against your claim, you can still go on to pursue the claim in court but the arbitrator’s decision will certainly be used as evidence against your claim.
In some recent cases, including one involving Ford Motor Company, manufacturers placed a clause in some purchase paperwork in an attempt to compell buyers to attend arbitration rather than filing lemon law claims. The California Appellate Court recently ruled that an automobile manufacturer may not force a consumer to arbitrate a Lemon Law claim based on an arbitration agreement with the selling dealer.
Arbitrators commonly tell consumers that they can save court costs and attorney fees through arbitration, but if the owner of a lemon ends up with only a partial refund or yet another repair they do not come out ahead.
California places limitations on the amount of time consumers have to file a lawsuit, including a lemon law claim. The statute of limitations for filing a lemon law claim in California is 4 years, but not necessarily 4 years from the vehicle’s purchase date. Instead, the law is a bit unclear since it states that consumers have 4 years from the date that they ought to have reasonably known that their vehicle was a lemon. This could be after 2 failed repair attempts on a faulty part that causes a significant safety hazard or 4 years after the date that your vehicle was out of service for at least 30 cumulative days.
Regardless of how the state decides on the starting date of the 4-year time limit, it’s important to file a lemon lawsuit as soon as your vehicle meets the definition of a lemon. Failing to promptly file a claim gives the manufacturer reason to suggest that the mechanical problem isn’t serious since you were still able to use the car for a lengthy period.
It’s best to contact a California lemon law attorney as soon as you suspect that your car is a lemon.
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