A recent article in the Los Angeles Times discusses the California Car Buyer’s Bill of Rights, a law passed in 2006 that lays out rules regarding the purchase of new and used automobiles that can help prevent California Used Car Fraud. Specifically, the article outlines the ‘return option’ as it applies to used cars. Under the car buyer’s bill of rights, consumers have the right to return a used car to the dealer that it was purchased from for a small fee (usually based on the price of the vehicle). For instance, a dealer can charge a maximum of $75 if the price of the car is $5,000 or less. There are loopholes, however, that could get you into hot water when you buy a more expensive used car. For example, did you know that cars that cost over $40,000 need not have a return policy at all?
The article also discusses the California lemon law and how it applies not only to new cars but also used ones. For example, a new vehicle returned to a dealer because it is a lemon can be sold as a used vehicle, but only if the buyer is informed it was bought back under California’s lemon law. These “Lemon law buyback” automobiles must be advertised as such. Notices must be posted on the autos specifying the vehicles problems and the work completed to resolve them. Additionally, the manufacturer must provide a 1 year warranty for these issues.
Though the article doesn’t really tell us anything we don’t already know about the lemon law and the danger of buying a lemon, it does give us a much-needed reminder – know your rights before you buy. Though you can’t foresee a car being a lemon, you can prevent the wrong decisions before they happen. It’s up to you to be vigilant about your seller, your own rights, and the condition of a vehicle before you buy.
If you do get burned, realize that there is always hope in the form of an experienced California Lemon Law attorney. The Law Offices of Howard D. Silver are here to protect you from fraudulent sellers of new and used cars, get the money you deserve from your lemon, and help you fight back against unethical car repair companies, fraudulent sellers and dealers that sell substandard products to their trusting customers. Be proactive – arm yourself with education. But if you do get burned, contact us for a free consultation. Your time to file a claim may be limited, so act today.