How to protect yourself

If you think you may a lemon, be sure to keep good records. When you take the vehicle in to the dealer, tell them specifically what the problem is and describe it in detail.

Your obligation is to give them an opportunity to make the repair. Their obligation is to repair it. If they make the repair, they have met their obligation. Only if they are unable to repair the problem, as sometimes happens, does the lemon law comes into play.

 

Don't talk lawyers or Lemon Law with the dealer. It does not help and makes them defensive. And they may not really try to repair it. Just tell them here is the car, this is the problem, please fix it. If you can demonstrate the problem for them, offer go for a ride with them.  

Documents are very important in these cases. Usually when you take a car in you get an "in ticket" when you drop it off, and an "out ticket" when you pick it up. Keep both of them. Read the "in ticket" that you get when you leave the car. Check to make sure that what was written down accurately describes the problem, and that everything you requested is actually written down on the ticket. There are many instances in which the consumer tells the service advisor at the dealer one thing, and another gets put on the ticket. Do not keep the documents in your car!

Do not threaten to sue them. In today's world everything you say to the dealer, or to the customer service representative of the manufacturer will find its way into your customer service file. All manufacturers open a customer service file when you call on the 800 number to tell them of a problem. That information is put into the record with a bias to it. It may not reflect what you said or meant. Therefore always be polite and patient with them, but be definite and be precise about your problem.

Protect Your Rights

The lemon law requirements are very technical, and the assistance of a lawyer is important to protect your rights.

San Diego Lemon Law Center | The Law Office of Michael E. Lindsey
Tel: (858) 270-7000 Fax: (858) 270-7710 | 4455 Morena Blvd., Ste. 207 San Diego, CA, 92117 (see map)

General Information Only

The information in the San Diego Lemon Law Center pages is for general information only and is not intended to be taken as legal advice. If you have a specific legal question or problem, please feel free to contact us or you should promptly consult with an Attorney handling such matters in your area for advice.