The Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act is a law out of California that protects consumers when they purchase a lemon vehicle. This law covers any consumer goods such as electronics, RVs, vehicles, motorcycles, and anything on wheels that has a title and operates legally on the road. Another name for the Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act is the California Lemon Law. It has been protecting consumers since it was enacted in 1970.
Warranties are a significant factor in purchasing a vehicle. Those warranties ensure the buyer gets what they pay for, and vehicles are not put on the road as a hazard to others. Under the law, the manufacturer must oblige to fix any defects in the vehicle. If the vehicle cannot get repaired, the manufacturer must refund the money or offer another vehicle at the same price.
What To Do If You Have a Lemon?
There are a few things the consumer can do if they have a lemon. The first thing is to get with the manufacturer or the company that sold the product and informs them of the situation. The company should uphold its promises on warranties. Sometimes this is not always the situation. This is when the consumer should find lawyers who win lemon law claims and go after the seller.
Contacting the manufacturers first is critical because it shows the consumer did try to reach out. Only on failed attempts should they go to legal matters. This is when the lawyers will fight for the rights of their clients to get what they paid for or get refunds. Manufacturers will defy the laws to keep their businesses going. Still, the lemon law attorneys will follow the Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act and win the case every time, provided all the criteria are met. The attorneys will fight for the client to receive vehicle replacements, vehicle refunds, cash settlements, or a guaranteed repair of the vehicle. Many times the client can choose which option suits them best.
Procedures of a Lemon Law Claim
As mentioned earlier, there are different options to choose from when making a claim through law firms. The first part is the legal consultation.
This is where the client will state the case and say what they have done to try and resolve the issues. They will then give the lawyer the responses and records of all the information and knowledge they have of what took place. Questions will get answered, and the experienced attorney can guide the client regarding the next steps they will take.
The Demand Letter
If the attorney sees they have a case that will stand its ground, they will pursue the client’s request in a demand letter in writing to the company or manufacturer. It is the formal process that starts the claim, and it will show all the legal aspects of the state of California’s Lemon Law. The letter will also contain the desired solution to how the client wishes the problem to get resolved. A certain amount of time is allotted to the manufacturer to respond, usually two weeks to 30 days. If there is no response, then the next steps are taken. Within this time frame, the manufacturers will conduct meetings with their attorneys to see what happens next.
When the manufacturer cannot get out of their contract, they will push to make a settlement outside of court. This is the tricky part. Having an attorney will protect you of all your rights in the state of California. If an attorney is not used to the fullest extent, the client may come out short-changed during a settlement. This is why it is critical to get an attorney who knows the ropes of the lemon laws. If a settlement is agreed upon, that is the end of the case. The attorney should review all the corners of the agreement. Anyone who accepts the settlement waives their rights for any additional compensation in court.
This process is the final step should it go this far. The courts take over, and the case will go before a judge and or jury to determine the outcome. The client’s questions are, first, are they willing to go all the way. If they are, then having an experienced lawyer will almost always grant them victory. Should it come down to the courtroom’s decision, the case will go for all or nothing. Most manufacturers will not let it go this far because the lemon laws are strict, and California does not play around with those who breach the contracts.
Summing Everything Up
In a nutshell, having an attorney at your side is the best way to get everything you deserve as a consumer. Many people may be able to represent themselves, but they will not get past some laws since they are constantly changing. An experienced lawyer will always know and understand the changing of the playbook of rules. They also know how to fight big companies in and out of courts. So, the Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act works in the consumer’s favor.