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Automobiles and the Lemon Law

July 19, 2023

By Thomas McCutcheon

We have received several calls lately about new cars with substantial problems.    

Alabama’s “Lemon Law” provides an additional remedy, in addition to Uniform Commercial Code to purchasers of new motor vehicles that do not conform to a manufacturer’s express warranty.  It requires certain notices to the manufacturer and allowing the manufacturer the opportunity to repair defects in the vehicle.  The Lemon Law only protects consumers who buy vehicles for personal use.  A couple bought a van to transport their show dogs, they were not allowed to pursue a claim under the Lemon Law. 

The Lemon Law does not apply to motorhomes or vehicles that weigh more than 10,000 pounds.  The Lemon Law period is one year after the date of the original delivery or the first 12,000 miles, whichever first occurs.  

Written notice is required that describes the vehicle, the problems with it, the attempts to fix the problems and the identity of the people who have made the attempts.  If the problems with the car have been subject to repair three or more times by the manufacturer or the authorized dealer, one of which occurred during the Lemon Law period and the problem continues to exist or; the vehicle is out of service and in the custody of the dealer for a cumulative total of 30 days (unless due to conditions beyond the control of the dealer such as war, invasion, fire or flood).  

mccutcheon & hamner

I’m not sure why we have been getting more calls than usual about brand new cars with problems that the dealers can’t seem to fix, but I’m sure there is a reason.  I think the important thing to remember about what we all think of a warranty claim, or a Lemon Law claim, is the requirement that notice be given in writing before you take legal action. Reach out to a personal injury lawyer.

Buckle up, drive safely, and as always, your referrals are appreciated!  256-764-0112

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