Understanding Ohio Lemon Law
Ohio has its own lemon law, which is designed to protect buyers of new and used cars from defective vehicles. The law states that if a new car has a defect that cannot be repaired after three attempts, or if the defect significantly impairs the car’s use or value, the buyer can demand a refund or a replacement vehicle. The law only applies to new cars that are still under warranty, and the buyer has to notify the manufacturer of the defect within the first year of ownership. If the buyer purchased a used car, the lemon law may still apply if the car was still under the original warranty when the problem first arose. Ohio lemon law applies to cars, motorcycles, trucks, and recreational vehicles.
Steps to File a Lemon Law Claim in Ohio
If you think your car may qualify for a lemon law claim in Ohio, here are the steps you need to follow.
Step 1: Keep Records of Repairs
The first step is to keep detailed records of all the repairs performed on the vehicle. Make sure you keep copies of all invoices, work orders, and receipts, and note the date and mileage of each repair. This information will be vital when filing your claim.
Step 2: Notify the Manufacturer
If the defect cannot be repaired after three attempts, or if the car has been in the shop for a cumulative total of 30 days within the first year of ownership, notify the manufacturer in writing. The notice should include all the repair records, a description of the problem, and a demand for a refund or replacement vehicle.
Step 3: Hire a Lemon Law Attorney
If the manufacturer ignores your claim or denies responsibility, you may need to hire an experienced lemon law attorney. A skilled attorney will help you negotiate with the manufacturer, and they will represent you in court if necessary.
Step 4: Go to Arbitration
If you cannot come to an agreement with the manufacturer, you can go to arbitration. Arbitration is a legal process in which a neutral third party reviews the evidence and helps you and the manufacturer reach a settlement. In Ohio, the attorney general’s office runs the lemon law arbitration program.
Step 5: File a Lawsuit
If the arbitration process fails, you may need to file a lawsuit against the manufacturer. A lawsuit should only be a last resort, and it is best to have an experienced attorney on your side.
If you think you have a lemon car in Ohio, don’t give up. Ohio lemon law is there to protect you, and if you follow the right steps, you may be eligible for a refund or a replacement vehicle. Just remember to keep detailed records, notify the manufacturer, and hire an experienced attorney if necessary. By taking action, you can hold manufacturers accountable and ensure you get the car you deserve.
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