Lemon Law FAQs
Oct. 27, 2022
If you’ve recently purchased a vehicle from a dealership that has a significant defect, you may be able to file a claim under Michigan & Ohio Lemon Law. Lemon laws are complex and can be difficult to prove, so you need to be aware what is and what isn’t covered, how long the process takes, and how your claim will be affected depending on what state law applies.
For more answers to your questions and to speak with experienced Lemon Law attorneys, call our firm, Ronald S. Weiss, Attorney. While we are located in West Bloomfield, Michigan, and Toledo, Ohio, we handle cases throughout both states.
Lemon Law FAQ
What is a Lemon?
The word “lemon” is commonly used to describe any car that doesn’t run well, but it’s essential to understand its legal definition. In Ohio, your car may be considered a lemon if you purchased it or leased it for more than 30 days in Ohio, received ownership of the car while it was still under warranty, or if you still have rights under the original warranty of your car. In Michigan, your car may be considered a lemon if you purchased or leased it for personal use and you’ve purchased or leased fewer than 10 vehicles in the year, or if you’ve purchased or leased more than 10 vehicles in a year but only if they’re for personal use.
When Does a Vehicle Qualify as a Lemon?
To qualify as a lemon, generally, the car must:
Have a significant defect that is covered by the warranty that occurred within a specific period or after a number of miles traveled
Have a substantial defect that can't be fixed after a reasonable number of repair attempts
Have spent 30 days or more at the dealership for repairs within the first year of purchase
Furthermore, if you are in Ohio, additional provisions include:
Eight or more repairs in an effort to fix various problems; or
One attempt to repair a defect that was likely to cause death or serious injury
What is Covered Under Lemon Law?
In general, the defects covered by a Lemon Law have to significantly diminish the value of your new car, impair your ability to use it, or fail to meet the manufacturer’s warranty. This could mean that major systems such as steering, braking, electrical, or shifting are not working as they should and that you’ve made a reasonable effort to have them fixed and your efforts have been ineffective. This area of the law is case specific and you should review it with an attorney familiar with the Lemon Law.
How Long Does the Process Take?
The process of determining if your car is a lemon, taking all the necessary steps to address the defect, then gathering sufficient evidence to file a claim can take a long time. Additionally, because the laws in both Michigan and Ohio can be complicated, it’s almost always in your best interest to work with a Lemon Law attorney who can help keep you on track and troubleshoot any issues that arise. Also, each manufacturer has its own method of handling these cases.
Does the Lemon Law Cover Used Vehicles or Products?
Neither state’s Lemon Laws cover used vehicles. In order to be eligible, your car must be new or still covered under the manufacturer’s warranty. Other laws may apply to used vehicles. If your vehicle was fairly new at the purchase date, we'd certainly like to evaluate the matter.
Will I Have to Go to Trial?
In most cases, you will not have to go to trial because most car manufacturers will prefer to settle out of court. That said, each case is different. When you work with Ronald S. Weiss, Attorney, our team will represent you and your case every step of the way. If that means going to court, we will.
Look to Reliable Advocacy
If you’re in the West Bloomfield, Michigan, or Toledo, Ohio area or anywhere throughout Michigan or Ohio, and you would like to know more about your options for filing a claim under Michigan & Ohio Lemon Law, call us today to schedule a consultation.