California Lemon Law News + Info

Can I file a Lemon Law claim if I’ve already sold or traded in my vehicle?

If you have had a vehicle with recurring problems, you may have asked yourself “Is my vehicle a lemon?” Alternatively, you might have declared the vehicle unfixable and asked yourself, “What’s the fastest way to get rid of the vehicle?” It’s understandable for an owner or lessee of a seemingly unfixable car to wash their hands of the problem as fast as possible.

Now, you might ask yourself, “Can I file a Lemon Law claim if I’ve already sold or traded in my vehicle?” Whether you’ve already sold or traded in your vehicle, or otherwise found another way to get rid of it, you may wonder if you are eligible for restitution under the lemon law. The short answer is yes, you can file a lemon law claim in California, even if you’ve already sold or traded in the vehicle.

The California Lemon Law does not require that you still own or lease the vehicle. The California Lemon Law protects consumers who have bought or leased a defective vehicle, regardless if you still own it. What primarily matters is the facts surrounding the vehicle’s defects. As long as the defect first appeared within the warranty period and you gave the auto manufacturer a reasonable number of chances to repair your vehicle, you have the right to pursue a lemon law claim.

One caveat is that you might not have the opportunity to get the vehicle inspected, as vehicle inspections can help you gather evidence of your vehicle’s defect.

If you sold the vehicle to another individual, you may still have the right to file a claim under the California Lemon Law. However, the person to whom you sold that vehicle may not have the same right, as they purchased it from you in a private sale.

If you traded your vehicle in to the manufacturer, you may still have the right to file a lemon law claim.

Whatever the case may be, you will need to gather the necessary documentation for your lemon law claim. This means proof of ownership (meaning proof that you had owned the vehicle), the sales or lease agreement, and repair orders that you received at the end of each repair visit.

These documents will provide a clear timeline of events regarding your vehicle’s defects and your attempts to resolve the problem.

If you have more questions about pursuing a lemon law claim when you no longer have the vehicle, call our lemon law attorneys for a free consultation. We can be reached 24/7 at 877-217-7676.

Lemon Law Help by Knight Law Group is an automotive lemon law firm that exclusively practices in California. If you are a California resident who purchased or leased a defective vehicle from a licensed dealership in California, we may be able to help you get rid of your potential lemon and recover significant cash compensation. Model year restrictions apply: 2017–Present vehicle models only.

However, we cannot help those who reside outside of California or purchased their vehicle outside of California unless they are active duty members of the Armed Forces, nor will we be able to refer those to a lemon law firm in their states.

To learn more about the California Lemon Law and your legal rights, visit our guides on the California Lemon Law and Used Car Lemon Law for more information.

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