Lemon Law attorney Bob Silverman is featured in the November/December edition of The Penn Stater, Penn State’s Alumni Magazine. As part of the magazine’s how-to guide, Bob, a 1986 graduate, offers some guidance on how to avoid buying a lemon:
Narrow the car you’re looking for down to make and model. You have to do your research and know which models are reliable, especially if you’re buying a used car. You can research using on-line resources or check out magazines such as Consumer Reports. Our website, www.lemonlaw.com, actually has a Lemon Dodger worksheet, which provides the questions every used-car buyer should ask the dealer before signing on the dotted line.
If you are buying a used car from a dealer, you want to look into a vehicle that is certified by the manufacturer. This provides you with the manufacturer’s guarantee that they have gone over the car, and if there is a problem, they will address it.
When you buy a used car, you want to have some sort of warranty, preferably from the manufacturer. Most of the certified cars come with a factory warranty. If you buy a car in a private sale, and it has warranty leftover, it can transferable and you may still have legal recourse if needed. You want to make sure that if the car does break down, you are not going to be socked with huge repair bills which eat up the savings you accrued from buying used instead of new. If you have a manufacturer’s warranty, always take it to an authorized manufacturer dealer for repair, never to a private mechanic, as that will void your warranty.
Every state has a Lemon Law. Most Lemon Law firms don’t really deal with lemons per se; they deal with varying degrees of defects: Your brakes don’t stop the car, your steering isn’t right, the car leaks – that kind of thing. The best part of the PA Lemon Law and the Federal Warranty Statutes is that, in addition to providing you with a refund or new car, they also require manufacturers to pay all legal fees. The help is completely free to to the consumer.