PA Lemon Law FAQ
Answers to Frequently Asked Questions
If you've purchased, leased, and/or registered a defective vehicle in Pennsylvania, you could be covered under the PA Lemon Law. The state's lemon law is designed to protect you if your car or truck is in the shop an extended period of time, or repeatedly to repair the same issue. Potential outcomes could include a full repurchase, a brand new replacement vehicle, or significant monetary compensation to reflect the diminished value of the car as a result of the problem.
For more than 26 years, Kimmel & Silverman has helped tens of thousands of Pennsylvania drivers through our 1 800 LEMON LAW hotline and here we have collected answers to some of the most common questions we receive.
If you think you're driving a lemon, contact us now and find out how we can help. We can quickly evaluate your claim, and there are never any costs to you for our services.
- What is the Lemon Law in PA and who does it protect?
- Is legal representation free under the Lemon Law?
- Does a problem need to happen three times before I can make a claim?
- My vehicle suffers issues after the first 12 months and 12,000 miles - Can I still file?
- Does the Lemon Law cover used cars and trucks?
- Does the Lemon Law cover leased vehicles?
- Does the Lemon Law cover motorcycles?
- What should I do if I experience issues just after buying my car?
- What is the proper procedure for making a lemon law PA claim?
What is the Pennsylvania Lemon Law and Who Does it Protect?
The Lemon Law in PA is a state consumer protection law designed to protect drivers who:
- Purchased, leased, or registered (for the first time) a car or truck in Pennsylvania.
- Suffer a nonconformity or defect that occurs in the first 12 months or 12,000 miles (whichever comes first) that cannot be fixed after three attempts by a manufacturer authorized dealership.
- Or suffer a problem that requires the vehicle to be in the shop 30 or more days within the first 12 months or 12,000 miles (whichever comes first). These days do NOT have to be consecutive or for the same repair.
Is Legal Representation Free Under the Pennsylvania Lemon Law?
Yes! The law has a fee-shifting provision, which means that if you prevail, all legal fees and associated costs are paid by the manufacturer of the faulty vehicle on top of what you receive or as part of any settlement offer. If for some reason, you do not prevail, there is no cost. This means you can make a claim 100% cost-free.
Does a Problem Need to Happen Three Times Before I Can Claim?
Not always. If your car is in the shop for 30 days or more during the first 12 months or 12,000 miles (whichever comes first), you may also have a claim under the PA Lemon Law. These days do not have to be consecutive so it is important that you have these days referenced in your repair invoices.
My Vehicle Suffers Issues After The First 12 Months and 12,000 Miles - Can I Still File?
While you would be entitled to compensation under the PA Lemon Law, you may have rights under the Federal Warranty Statutes. If you your vehicle is still under warranty and you experience repetitive repairs for the same issue, we can pursue your case under the Federal Magnuson–Moss Warranty Act. Like the Lemon Law in PA, this statute gives you 100% cost-free legal representation. This is a monetary statute where we would work to recover compensation to reflect the diminished value of your vehicle as a result of problems incurred and repairs performed. You would maintain ownership of the vehicle; the vehicle would NOT be branded in any way, shape, or form; all warranties would remain in effect; and the money is non-taxable.
Does the Pennsylvania Lemon Law Cover Used Cars and Trucks?
Used cars are only covered under the Lemon Law in PA if the car has a lemon title that wasn't disclosed by the dealer prior to purchase. If a dealer misrepresents a vehicle at the time of sale, you may also be covered under the Pennsylvania Unfair Trade Practices Act.
Otherwise, used cars are not covered under the Lemon Law - but we can still help. If you have a manufacturer's warranty, original warranty, or extended warranty on your vehicle, we can represent you under the Federal Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act in an effort to obtain monetary compensation.
In either case, contact us and we'll look into your claim free of charge.
Does the Pennsylvania Lemon Law Cover Leased Vehicles?
Yes, leased cars are covered under the PA Lemon Law as of February 2002.
In his capacity as legal consultant to The Pennsylvania House of Representatives Consumer Affairs Committee, 1-800-LEMON-LAW founding partner Craig Thor Kimmel assisted with PA House Bill 767, which expanded protection to lessees, an additional 20% of new car drivers in Pennsylvania.
Does the Pennsylvania Lemon Law Cover Motorcycles?
No, motorcycles are not covered under the PA Lemon Law - but we may still be able to help. We represent Pennsylvania motorcycle drivers through the Federal Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. If your bike is still under warranty and you're having repetitive issues, please get in touch with us and we'll review your claim.
What Should I Do If I Experience Issues Just After Buying My Car?
Whatever you do, do not return or abandon the vehicle at the dealership. We understand that issues in the days or weeks following purchase are very frustrating and stressful. It is essential you follow the correct procedure for a claim. Contact us immediately and we'll help you out.
Abandoning your vehicle at the dealership could be seen as a voluntary repossession, which might damage your credit or claim.
What Is the Proper Procedure for Making a Lemon Law PA Claim?
- Take your vehicle back to the dealership to have it checked and repaired.
- Get a repair invoice when you pick up your vehicle.
- Check the repair invoice and confirm it accurately describes your vehicle's problems.
- Record each date of your repair visits and the repair performed.
- Keep a copy of every invoice - this will make it easier to process your claim.
- Contact us and we'll review your claim and advise you on how to proceed.