If you bought or leased a vehicle that has a lot of problems, you might wonder if you are eligible to file a lemon law claim. The California Lemon Law exists to protect consumers who purchased a defective vehicle that seemingly cannot be fixed. However, you may be concerned about mileage. How many miles can a vehicle have while still being eligible for protection under the California Lemon Law?
The California Lemon Law does not specify a limit on how many miles you can have on your vehicle for a valid lemon law claim. You may have a valid lemon law claim if you have a vehicle defect that substantially impairs the use, value or safety of the vehicle, that defect first occurred during the warranty period, and you gave the auto manufacturer a reasonable number of chances to repair the vehicle.
However, the mileage you had on your vehicle when the defect first arose can affect the outcome of your lemon law claim. According to the California Lemon Law, the average vehicle lifetime is 120,000 miles. The California Lemon Law also requires that the defect first arises during the warranty period. Most manufacturer warranties have specific mileage limits, with the industry norm being between 3 years or 36,000 miles and 5 years or 60,000 miles for bumper-to-bumper warranties.
The specific way the mileage affects your outcome is that, if you win your case and opt for a lemon law buyback, your mileage affects the amount that will be offset from your lemon law refund.
Specifically, the mileage offset is calculated by taking the mileage of your vehicle when the defect first appeared, dividing that by 120,000 miles, and multiplying it by the total amount paid on your vehicle. For example, if you paid $50,000 for the car, and the defect happened at 12,000 miles, you would divide 12,000 by 120,000, multiply that by $50,000, and get the result: $5,000 taken off your vehicle refund.
If the mileage of your vehicle when the defect first appeared was beyond the warranty period, that may affect the eligibility of your lemon law claim.
If you have further questions about the effect of vehicle mileage on your potential lemon law claim, consult a lemon law attorney. We offer free consultations at our 24/7 number: 877-222-2222.
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: 2016–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 California Lemon Law Guide for more information.