Do you drive a defective car in Pennsylvania?
Defective vehicles are stressful for any driver, especially when it significantly limits the car’s use. Many Pennsylvanians do not realize they could be entitled to compensation if driving a vehicle with severe defects. Strong consumer protection laws are in place to protect you from predatory manufacturers.
Driving a lemon car yields unique legal rights specific to you and your vehicle. Under these terms, you could be entitled to a new car, a full refund, or a partial refund. Know your rights under the PA Lemon Law and ensure you are not left out of pocket because of a defective vehicle.
Timothy Abeel & Associates is a specialist law firm focusing on Lemon Law cases. We have helped thousands of clients recover millions of dollars, and we could help you. Learn more about the Lemon Law in PA to determine whether you have a case.
Pennsylvania Lemon Law Explained
Pennsylvania’s Lemon Law is a consumer protection law that helps people who buy or lease new vehicles that have major defects that cannot be repaired during the first 12 months of ownership or the first 12,000 miles the vehicle is driven (whichever happens first).
The Pennsylvania Lemon Law is designed to protect consumers like you. To qualify, your vehicle must be purchased or leased in Pennsylvania. Alternatively, you can purchase a vehicle from another state, but it must be registered for the first time within the Commonwealth.
If your vehicle has a problem, your Lemon Law attorney in PA must always provide 100% cost-free representation. Under state law, if you win your case, the manufacturer must cover all costs, including compensation and attorney fees. Legally, no attorney in these cases can charge their clients under any circumstances.
As previously noted, depending on the case, attorneys can secure consumers a complete vehicle repurchase, a brand-new car, or significant financial compensation that comes with continued ownership of the existing vehicle.
Under the Lemon Laws in PA, the criteria for whether your vehicle qualifies are strict with zero flexibility. However, if you do not qualify for a Lemon Law case, you still have other options. Consumers can still call a lawyer to help them under the federal Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act.
The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act states that if a car, truck, motorcycle, or ATV has required repairs three or more times for an identical problem during the timeline of an original or extended warranty, you can make a claim. Like the Lemon Law, claims made under this act also qualify for free legal representation.
To learn more about whether you have a case under the PA Lemon Law or via the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, get in touch with Timothy Abeel & Associates for a free, no-obligation consultation.
Why Should You Call a Lemon Law Lawyer in PA?
Lemon Law may seem cut-and-dried, but you should always hire a qualified, experienced law firm to fight your case on your behalf.
Navigating the complex legal process without guidance can derail your case and reduce your chances of getting the justice you deserve.
So, what does hiring a Lemon Law attorney in PA provide?
Prevent Manufacturers from Taking Advantage of You
The purpose of the Lemon Law is to protect consumers from manufacturers failing to provide the quality product the market expects. It is no secret that manufacturers will try anything to get out of paying compensation to drivers who find themselves frustrated with owning one of these defective vehicles.
In Pennsylvania, it is not uncommon for consumers to be confronted by bullying, dismissive, and predatory tactics from manufacturers. Some will offer another repair, only for the vehicle to break down again. Others will offer a cash deal far below the standard, leaving you out of pocket when the vehicle encounters more problems.
Your manufacturer knows the law, and they also know how to turn it to their advantage. Equip yourself with a lawyer that knows what you are entitled to according to Pennsylvania’s laws.
Hiring a lawyer assists you in defending your rights from a dealer or front office that fails to fulfill its obligations under the law. Your attorney can also calculate how much you could be entitled to and ensure that you receive that rightful reimbursement.
Manufacturers hate nothing more than a good attorney fighting Lemon Law cases on behalf of consumers. Fight your corner and ensure that you get the compensation you deserve.
Get the Best Money Deal and Leave Nothing on the Table
Connect with a Pennsylvania Lemon Law lawyer that ensures you leave no money on the table in your pursuit of justice. Auto manufacturers aim to pay you as little as possible in the event of a claim.
Without appropriate representation, you are left fighting for compensation against a legal team that knows all the tricks of the trade. Without working with a team with extensive knowledge and experience in the arena, your chances of maximizing your settlement are slim. Even worse, you could find yourself losing your case.
Back yourself up with a Lemon Law lawyer in PA to position yourself to get the best deal possible, according to your rights under PA law. Timothy Abeel & Associates levels the playing field, no matter how large or expensive the corporation’s legal team is.
Get your rightful compensation by calling our legal team today.
Handle Your Lemon Law, Pennsylvania Case with Skill and Experience
Even though the Lemon Law has been on the books since the 1950s, many consumers are still unaware of their rights or what these laws mean.
Handle your lemon vehicle with confidence by hiring an attorney. Legal representation means much more than someone who can recite the law by heart. Every case is unique, and an experienced attorney has experience in managing numerous cases with all their nuances.
The greatest threat to any manufacturer is an experienced law firm. They will hire the best legal team to fight their cases, so why should you not have the same level of representation?
Pennsylvania lawyers are there to guide you while maintaining an impeccable understanding of the law as it changes and evolves.
Making a Claim is Risk-Free
The most common reason people attempt to fight their own lawsuits is concerns over legal fees. With Lemon Law cases, money is no barrier to securing justice through the Commonwealth’s legal system.
Pennsylvania wants consumers to be protected, which is why state law prevents attorneys from charging money upfront for any Lemon Law case.
Instead, fighting for your rights is 100% free. The manufacturer pays all attorney fees if you win, meaning you will not have to pay anything out of your compensation package. The burden is entirely shifted to the manufacturer.
But what if you lose? No problem because the fee-shifting provision continues to apply. Under no circumstances will you ever need to pay a cent to fight for your rights.
Sit Back and Let Your Attorney Handle the Rest
Driving a lemon is stressful enough. With an experienced Lemon Law attorney, you can focus on your life without worrying about the status of your legal case.
Hiring a lawyer guarantees getting a better deal without the hassle of studying the laws and managing your case on a whim.
Enlisting an attorney as your legal counsel provides valuable insights and guidance to help you win your case. Your only obligation is to supply your attorney with the necessary data on your vehicle.
Let your attorney plot your course to victory as you pursue your case risk-free.
Prepare Yourself for the Opposition
Manufacturers are constantly fighting Lemon Law cases. It is why every major manufacturer in America retains a specialized team of lawyers to confront these claims. These legal representatives are retained specifically to slash the manufacturer’s outlay costs.
If you want to win your claim, cover your finances, and feel like justice has been done, you need a Lemon Law lawyer with the knowledge and experience to win what you’re owed.
Build a stronger case with minimal hassle by hiring Timothy Abeel & Associates today.
There are a few requirements that determine whether your vehicle is covered by Pennsylvania Lemon Law:
- The vehicle must either be brand new or a dealer demonstration vehicle.
- The vehicle must be a car, sport utility vehicle, or non-commercial truck or passenger van (motorcycles, RVs, and boats aren’t covered by Pennsylvania’s Lemon Law but there are other laws that can help the owners of those vehicles if they buy or lease one that’s defective).
- The vehicle must be used for personal, family or household use – meaning not primarily used for a business.
- The vehicle must be purchased or leased from a dealer in Pennsylvania or purchased/leased in another state and then titled in Pennsylvania during its first year of ownership or first 12,000 miles.
Not every vehicle defect or problem qualifies you for a Lemon Law claim (although there may be other laws available to make a claim and get compensation).
Pennsylvania’s Lemon Law requires:
- A defect or other problem with the vehicle that does not conform to the manufacturer’s warranty.
- The defect or problem substantially impairs the use, value or safety of the vehicle.
- The defect or problem has not been repaired or corrected by the car dealer after three attempts (in other words, you need to give the car dealership at least three chances to repair or correct the defect before you file a Lemon Law claim). The dealer is required to give you a fully itemized statement of the work each time you take the vehicle in for repair or service, including information about any parts installed and labor performed.
- BUT if the vehicle has been out-of-service because of the defect—or any other problem or malfunction—for a cumulative total of 30 or more days, you can file a Lemon Law claim EVEN IF the dealer hasn’t had three opportunities to fix the defect.
Pennsylvania’s Lemon Law provides for two remedies – you choose the one you want:
- A refund of the purchase price: If the owner chooses to receive a refund, the vehicle’s manufacturer is required to pay back:
- The vehicle’s purchase price (not the market price, or its current value, but the purchase price you paid according to the original invoice or lease contract).
- The sales tax you paid.
- The down payment, loan and lease payments you’ve made.
- Attorneys’ fees, expert fees and court costs.
- A replacement vehicle: If you’d rather get a brand-new vehicle that operates correctly, you have the option of receiving a comparable vehicle (same make, model and trim level) with credit for all of your payments as if you still owned the original vehicle. In other words:
- Your loan or lease continues at its current unpaid balance and will still run for the original term (it is not extended).
- Your prior payments are counted toward the loan or lease as if you still owned the defective vehicle.
- In other words, if you were in month six of a four-year car loan or lease when the defective vehicle was replaced, your next payment with the new car counts as payment number seven under your loan or lease.
If you purchased a used car in Pennsylvania, or the problems with your new car started after the first year or 12,000 miles, you may still be protected under other consumer protection laws. For example, if the vehicle is still covered by the manufacturer's warranty, you may have a Breach of Warranty claim or a Fraud Claim.
The Lemon Law is designed so that the owner of a defective vehicle is fully-reimbursed and not stuck paying additional expenses or costs. The law includes a fee-shifting provision that requires the vehicle manufacturer to pay all attorneys’ fees and other legal costs if the consumer wins the case IN ADDITION TO reimbursement for all repairs and service visits at the dealer.
All of these expenses are paid whether you choose the refund remedy or replacement vehicle remedy.
Yes, we file Lemon Law claims for vehicle owners throughout Pennsylvania no matter where they live in the state. If we need to have an expert inspect your vehicle and write a report, we will send that person to you.
We work tirelessly to get our clients back on the road and with money back in their pockets as soon as possible, with a goal of settling each case within the first 30 to 90 days. We aren't afraid to file suit against the manufacturer if they refuse to give our clients everything they're legally entitled to.
Even if the repairs and issues with your vehicle don’t fit within the parameters of Lemon Law, they may qualify as unreasonable under other state or federal consumer protection laws. Call Timothy Abeel & Associates at 888.611.5481 or contact us online to find out if you have a breach of warranty or loss in value claim.
Timothy Abeel & Associates, P.C. works to get the owners of defective or malfunctioning vehicles the settlement they deserve as fast as possible. Give our firm a call at 888-611-5481 to find out what you are entitled to as a consumer.
The biggest misconception among consumers is that they must wait for the same problem to occur three times before making a Lemon Law claim.
Under PA law, you are entitled to make a claim if your car is in the shop for 30 days or more within the first 12 months or 12,000 miles driven.
Moreover, the days do not have to be consecutive. If your car needs to go into the shop for the same problem, and each period is for 15 days, you are driving a lemon and have the right to make a claim against the manufacturer.
For this reason, we strongly recommend ensuring that repair invoices contain specific dates so you can present them as evidence.
No. You would not be entitled to file a claim under Lemon Law. The restrictions are inflexible, with no exceptions made. However, this does not mean you are not entitled to compensation.
Federal Warranty Statutes enable you to claim if your vehicle is still under an original or extended warranty. If you experience repetitive repairs for the same issue, Timothy Abeel & Associates can still launch a case under the Federal Magnuson-Moss Act. These types of cases still give you the right to cost-free legal representation.
Cases outside of the Lemon Law remit still entitle you to claim monetary damages that accurately reflect the vehicle's diminished value. You would maintain full ownership of your automobile, and your existing warranties would remain valid.
Awards made under the Magnuson-Moss Act are entirely non-taxable.
Sometimes, used cars may be covered under the auto Lemon Law. If a car has a Lemon title that the dealer failed to disclose before purchase, you could still pursue a claim under the Lemon Law.
However, dealer misrepresentation is typically covered by the Pennsylvania Unfair Trade Practices Act instead of the Lemon Law. Either way, you have a case in both circumstances.
The Lemon Law does not apply to used cars in most scenarios. Instead, the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act would apply to used cars that still have an original, extended, or manufacturer’s warranty.
Whether you have a new or used car, you can still call us to find out whether you have a case.
Yes. Leased cars would be covered under the law. The inclusion of leased cars is a relatively new addition to the Commonwealth’s existing package of laws.
PA House Bill 767 was passed in February 2002 to provide additional protection to leased vehicles. This protection was vital for new drivers, with 20% of new car drivers choosing to lease instead of buy.
Leased car drivers have the same protections as new car drivers.
No. Motorcycles are expressly excluded from Lemon Law protections. If you drive a motorcycle and experience repetitive repairs, you may still be able to pursue your case.
The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act does cover motorcycles. If your motorcycle is still under an active warranty, repetitive issues could qualify you for monetary compensation from the manufacturer.
Contact Timothy Abeel & Associates, and we will look into your case cost-free to see if you are entitled to compensation.
Many drivers make the mistake of returning their vehicle to the dealership or abandoning it if they experience issues in the days and weeks after purchasing a vehicle for the first time.
Understandably, drivers become frustrated and irritated by repetitive issues, but you have a right to compensation. To pursue it, you must follow the correct procedure for making a claim.
Abandoning your vehicle is the biggest mistake you can make because a judge would view it as voluntary repossession. If voluntary repossession occurs, your credit and claim could be damaged.
You are entitled to contact a Lemon Law attorney in PA the moment you believe your vehicle qualifies. As soon as you believe it does, contact Timothy Abeel & Associates for a free case review.
Like any legal case, documentation is the key to proving your claim. Often, many drivers come unequipped with legitimate documentation that can be used to win them the compensation they are entitled to.
First, you must return your vehicle to the dealership where you purchased it to have it inspected and repaired. Never take your vehicle to a third-party garage or dealership, or it could cause your claim to be derailed.
Once you pick up your vehicle, ensure you receive a repair invoice. This invoice is the primary supporting document in your case. Inspect it when you are in the shop to ensure the information is correct.
The date you brought the car in, picked it up, and performed repairs must be listed clearly. Your invoice should also accurately describe the problems you have experienced with the vehicle.
Ensure you keep a hard copy of every invoice for your Lemon Law lawyer in PA. This will make it easier to process your claim when your lawyer presents your evidence to the manufacturer.
Yes. These vehicles may be sold per the revised Pennsylvania Lemon Law, enacted in February 2002. However, these vehicles must have a written notice stating that the car was involved in such a case. Moreover, the new owner must sign a form certifying that they are aware of the vehicle’s history.
Dealers and leasing companies that transfer these vehicles must also issue an official notification to the Division of Motor Vehicles, which will then mark the car’s title.
You may be able to obtain a full or partial refund as part of your Lemon Law case.
Several forms of compensation can be awarded as part of a successful Lemon Law case. Most forms of compensation, such as a replacement, are simple enough to grasp, but how do refunds work?
In the case of a vehicle refund, the refund calculation accounts for the total purchase of the vehicle and then deducts the reasonable allowance for vehicle use. The latter figure depends on factors like its overall mileage.
The odometer reading will typically be calculated at 10 cents per mile. For example, the reasonable allowance for a vehicle driven 8,000 miles would be $800.
Refund amounts can also include the following:
- Sales tax, licensing fees, registration costs, and other additional costs of ownership
- Modifications to the vehicle added by the manufacturer or an authorized dealer within 30 days of purchase
- Current trade-in value
- Attorney costs
- Expert witnesses
- Lemon Law filing fees
Since there is so much variation in how much your refund could be worth, your lawyer will examine all available evidence before negotiating the highest possible settlement on your behalf.