Lemon Law in Washington DC

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You may have recently purchased a car that you though would take years to have defects, but after a few weeks you realize it having some serious defects that keep on recurring. Don’t count a loss already since Washington DC’s lemon law is out to help you get your compensation. This law was enacted to protect consumers from faulty vehicles. You can invoke to get your refund or vehicle replacement.

Vehicle protected under this law

In order for your vehicle to qualify for protection under Washington DC’s lemon law, the defect must be serious enough to impair the vehicle’s safety, resale value as well as use. You must have taken it to the manufacturer several times for repair but the defects were not fixed. Another qualification is that the vehicle must have stayed in the repair shop for more than 30 business days or more. In a nutshell, the vehicle must meet the following qualifications as stipulated in Washington DC’s lemon law:

  • You must have had 4 attempts to fix the defects
  • The vehicle must have been out of service for 30 days or more
  • The defect must serious enough to impair the vehicles safety, use of market value
  • The vehicle must have not travelled 18,000 miles or over
  • You must have documentation that proves that you tried to resolve the issue with the manufacturer.

Any of the above condition may make your vehicle qualify as a lemon. In this event, you will be entitled to either a refund of your money or a vehicle replacement. If you choose a refund over a vehicle replacement, the manufacturer will be required to legally deduct the amount of money equivalent to the total mileage covered when the vehicle in question was in good condition.

Taking Lemon Law Action

If your purchase a lemon and fail to resolve the issue with the manufacturer, you can report your complaint at the Office of the Attorney General. If you think you might have a claim under Washington DC’s lemon law and you don’t want to go through any informal dispute settlement program, you can hire a lemon law attorney to argue your case in the court of law. Make sure you have all the required documents and records to prove your case. The court will be interest to hear whether you followed all the steps of lemon law dispute resolution as stipulated by Washington DC’s lemon law. So it is prudent if you keep all the records of correspondence with the manufacturer. In most cases, it is the manufacturer who is found guilty. So he will be required to either:

  • Replace the vehicle with a comparable type, complete with all components and packages present in the first vehicle, OR
  • Refund your money plus all the applicable fess

You can read all the legalese of Washington DC’s lemon law yourself. It’s all there in the D.C. Code.