The State of Massachusetts defines a lemon as a new or leased vehicle that impairs the use, the safety, or the market value and which has not been properly fixed even after a reasonable number of tries. Lemon law cases are very common in Massachusetts and the Lemon Law is designed in a way to give protection to the customers that have serious defects in their new or leased vehicles.
Lemon law applies to new motorcycles, cars and trucks which are bought or leased in the state of Massachusetts from an authorized car dealer for personal use. The law does not cover vehicles that are used for business or for off-road purposes. Also, the law does not cover accidents, acts of vandalism, or unauthorized repairs from the manufacturer or authorized agent. Also, be aware that not all car problems are serious enough to qualify for the law’s protection. The coverage is valid only for one year from the original date of the delivery or fifteen thousand miles of use after the original date of delivery, whichever comes first.
If you want to take advantage of this lemon law, you have to specifically point out how the defect impairs the usage of the vehicle, how it endangers those who use the vehicle, and how its market value is depreciated. You also must provide proof that there were at least three tries for fixing the vehicle and to show that those tries had not improved the situation in any way.
In case of a dispute, arbitration is an informal and less expensive way to resolve the matter. Both sides have a chance to provide evidence regarding the vehicles condition. You have an option to do this with a manufacturer-sponsored arbitration or with a state run arbitration. The main difference between these two arbitrations is that the state arbitration is basing its decision on the standards from the lemon law, while the manufacturer does not. Decision can be expected within 45 days if the arbitration is done by the state, and an additional three weeks are necessary if the manufacturer decides to file an appeal. The time frame for completion in manufacturer sponsored arbitration is much shorter.
You may refuse the arbitration and take this issue to the court. However, you need to meet some requirements from the lemon law in order for the judge to easily bring a decision that will be in your favor. If you do not meet certain requirements, that can lead in some possible penalties and fines for you. That is why it is best to consult Levine-Piro Law as a quality Massachusetts-based law firm that can properly handle your case.
If the lemon law is on your side, then you can hope to get a replacement vehicle or you could get a money refund. If you get a replacement vehicle, it usually comes in a similar make and model. You will also get reimbursement for sales tax and registration fees. If you want a money refund, you will get a full price on the purchase including the allowances and the credits, but lowered based on the mileage that you have driven the vehicle.