How do Auto Dealer Fraud Cases Differ from Lemon Law Cases?

How do Auto Dealer Fraud Cases Differ from Lemon Law Cases?

Nowadays a lot of people don’t have a clear understanding of lemon law cases and auto dealer fraud cases.  As a matter of fact, lemon law case is different from auto dealer fraud case. To put simply, the lemon law refers to vehicles that have safety-related defects, while auto dealer fraud deals with dealers’ deceitful practices. Do you have problems with your vehicle? Are you confused because you don’t know whether you are dealing with auto dealer fraud cases or lemon law cases? Don’t panic.  We are eager to help you understand the difference between these cases. That’s why we will refer to lemon law and dealer fraud separately in this article.

Lemon law

Actually, there are many cases when consumers purchase their dream vehicles and later feel great disappointment. After using their cars for some time it turns out that the automobile has a grave defect. It is true that no one wants to appear in such stressful situations, but there is a solution to any problem. Luckily, American consumers can rely on the protection of the federal lemon law and states’ lemon laws. It is worth to point out that lemon laws differ from state to state. Federal lemon law, also known as the Magnusson-Moss Warranty Act aims to protect the rights of American consumers who have purchased or leased a faulty vehicle.

Is the car that you bought defective?  Does this defect impair value, as well as the safety of the vehicle? At this point, you are eligible for relief under your state’ lemon law. Manufacturers have the opportunity of making certain number of attempts to repair vehicles, depending on the state you come from.  Only after this step you can file a complaint for lemon relief. You are now probably wondering, ‘’And what about used cars?’’ Well, if your used car comes with the manufacturer’s warranty, then you are lucky. In this case,  you can expect protection under used car lemon laws of many states.

California Lemon law

As a matter of fact, California Lemon Law is the Song- Beverly Consumer Warranty Act. It provides compensation for car owners, whose vehicles don’t perform appropriately. An essential piece of information about the California Lemon law is that it covers any kind of vehicle, except motorcycles. Thus, your vehicle can qualify under California lemon law if it meets certain conditions. Here are some of them:

  • Your vehicle is used mainly for personal or family purposes.
  • The vehicle is covered by the manufacturer’s original warranty. Unfortunately, if your car lacks the warranty, the lemon law won’t work in your case.
  • The vehicle can be considered to be a lemon if 4 repair attempts were made during thirty cumulative days after 18 months of the vehicle’s purchase.

What do we mean when talking about lemon law cases?  Actually, lemon law case mostly refers to safety and other defects, like defective tires, defective seatbelts, brake failure, etc.

Auto dealer fraud 

Regarding auto dealer fraud cases, you should know that it focuses on the deceitful practice that dealers use to sell the vehicle. The reality is that car buyers should have sufficient awareness about dealers’ common tricks. Only in this way they can avoid falling victims of auto dealer frauds and losing not only their financial means but peace of mind as well.  Thus, auto dealer fraud is an illegal action and it may occur during different stages of vehicle purchasing process.

Title Washing

This is one of the frauds that is widely spread among unscrupulous car dealers. To sell the vehicle with the higher price, dealers fail to inform a buyer about the vehicle’s salvaged title. That is to say, a consumer obtains a car having no idea about the automobiles’ ‘’previous life’’.  Driving a vehicle that experienced various damages in the past is really dangerous and it can lead to many sad consequences in the future.

Bait and Switch

Here is a common scenario of Bait and Switch. You come across a very alluring advertisement which offers an irresistible deal. You think that this is a‘’ once- in -a- lifetime’’ opportunity to purchase the car of your dreams. So, you hurry up to the dealership to purchase a vehicle at an unbelievably low price. However, a sad surprise is waiting for you there. It turns out that the vehicle that you saw in the advertisement isn’t available. The dealer convinces you to purchase a more expensive vehicle using aggressive tactics.

Mileage Rollback

This auto dealer fraud occurs when a dealer rolls back the odometer of the car. They take this step to conceal the real mileage of the used vehicle. As a result, low mileage is what consumers notice when inspecting the automobile. Dealers succeed in rolling back not only mechanical odometers but digital odometers as well. Car buyers have to take certain precautions to prevent this fraud. For example, they can check the history and last odometer record of the vehicle using the VIN of the car.

Whether you are dealing with auto dealer fraud cases or lemon law cases, it is always a good idea to ask an experienced attorney for help. The awareness of your rights, as well as legal assistance is what you need in this situation.