North Carolina Lemon Law Helps Consumers Even Playing Field With Manufacturers

By Jim Johnson

The North Carolina lemon law was passed by the legislature to place consumers who purchase problem cars on a level playing field with car manufacturers. Prior to the lemon law, car owners with car problems were left to do battle with the huge corporations. Seeing a problem with the disparity of the parties, the North Carolina Legislature introduced the lemon law, which created the right for a car owner to file a lawsuit against an auto manufacturer.

The North Carolina Lemon Law protects purchasers of new automobiles that were bought in North Carolina. The law also applies people leasing automobiles in North Carolina as well. The law is applicable to all types of automobiles and motorcycles purchased in North Carolina. It covers trucks and some vans too.

Under the lemon law, the test to see if a vehicle is a lemon is to determine if the defects affect the use value or safety of the automobile. The legislatures goal was to give the consumer tools to better battle the automobile manufacturers and prevent them from summarily denying claims regarding problem vehicles. One of these tools is a presumption that an automobile is a lemon. To get a presumption that an automobile is a lemon, the purchaser of the automobile must show on of the two following are true:

The same problem or issue has been attempted to be repaired by the car manufacturer or a dealer greater than four (4) occasion and the problem continues to exist; or

The purchaser did not have use of the automobile while repairs were attempted or while the automobile was awaiting a repair attempt. The impairment of use of the automobile must be for twenty or more days in the warranty period. There is a catch though, to get the presumption the purchaser send correspondence to the manufacturer putting it on notice of the concerns with the vehicle.

Under the North Carolina lemon law, a purchaser can get relief from a lemon vehicle in two ways. And the legislature has given the purchaser the option of which way they wish to be compensated. The lemon law requires the automobile manufacturer to give the purchaser a replacement auto of the same type or accept return of the purchasers automobile and give the purchaser their money back.

In North Carolina, the lemon law states that the refund to the purchaser shall be reduced by a mileage offset. The mileage offset is the use by the purchaser prior to the first repair visit. The mileage offset is a simple mathematical calculation contained in the lemon law statute. Simply put, take the miles before the first repair visit and divide that number by one hundred thousand and then multiply that percentage by the original price and that number will give you the dollar amount of the mileage offset.

It is advisable that if you think your car is a lemon under the North Carolina lemon law, you should seek out a lemon law attorney now. The North Carolina lemon law is favorable to consumers but still has several requirements that must be met or your case could be damaged. The best news is, the lemon law requires the carmaker to pay the owners attorney fees if they win the case. - 29952

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