2 Truths and a Lie: Texas Lemon Law Edition
Lemon law cases in Texas are oftentimes more complicated than they have any right to be. The Texas Lemon Law statute is relatively black and white, but many consumers falsely believe they have a case without reliable evidence to prove it. There are two main questions to consider when determining whether or not your vehicle qualifies for potential relief under the Texas Lemon Law statute:
- Is my vehicle still covered under the manufacturer’s express warranty?
- Did I give the manufacturer a reasonable number of repair attempts to sort out the problem with my vehicle?
If the answer to both of these questions is “yes,” a Texas Lemon Law attorney may be able to help you gain relief for your defective vehicle in the form of a repurchase, replacement, or monetary compensation. In this article, we’ll discuss three potential lemon law cases in Texas. Two of these scenarios meet the criteria for a possible case, and the remaining one doesn’t. After evaluating these cases, you can have your own case evaluated for free by an attorney from The Law Office of Darin Siefkes, PLLC, here.
Scenario #1: Stewart Steering Wheel
Stewart Steering Wheel recently purchased a brand new Chevrolet Silverado. After one month of ownership, he starts to suspect that his new truck, which is still under warranty, is defective. He has experienced a temporary loss of electric power steering on multiple occasions, and although it hasn’t lead to an accident, he’s worried that it’s only a matter of time before his new vehicle is a twisted pile of scrap in the middle of the highway. Over the next few months, he takes the Silverado in for service a number of times at the dealership he purchased it from. They are unable to resolve the issue, so he keeps a record of his repair invoices to show a Texas Lemon Law attorney. Does Stewart have a potential lemon law case for his Chevrolet?
Scenario #2: Debbie “Death Wobble”
Debbie “Death Wobble” just purchased a used 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee. It’s still covered by its express warranty (3 years/36,000 miles), but its repair history shows that it has been serviced at multiple dealerships. She got a great deal, but three months after purchase, it starts to suffer from the iconic “death wobble” linked to various Jeep models over the years. Now, she’s wondering, is my Jeep a lemon? Furthermore, she’s unsure whether or not she qualifies for relief under the Texas Lemon Law since her vehicle is used. Does Debbie have a case?
Scenario #3: Ricky Rattle
Ricky Rattle purchased a Chrysler 300 this year to take advantage of the new powertrain warranty being offered on all vehicles (5 years/100,000 miles). He was recently promoted, and he finds himself commuting to work from San Antonio to his company’s Austin office for the first two years of ownership. Due to this, he quickly puts miles on the vehicle. One day, he notices that his transmission is slipping and rattling during acceleration, so he takes it into the dealership to learn more. At this moment, he realizes that his odometer has ticked past the 100.000-mile mark. The mechanic confirms that the transmission is defective, but does this mean his Chrysler is a lemon? And is there anything he can do to get relief?
Which Two Scenarios Most Likely Qualify?
Scenario #1 (Truth): The first example illustrates a nearly perfect candidate for potential relief under the Texas Lemon Law statute. Stewart purchased a new vehicle under warranty. He was proactive in trying to get the vehicle repaired a reasonable number of times and maintained a record of repair invoices.
Scenario #2 (Truth): This is a tricky case. Although Debbie’s vehicle is used, it’s still covered by the manufacturer’s express warranty — this is key for lemon law cases in Texas. The spotty and inconsistent repair history could prove to be problematic, but with a clear record of repair invoices, a Texas Lemon Law attorney will be able to make an accurate determination as to whether or not she qualifies. If no major repairs were performed by third-party mechanics, she could very well still qualify for potential relief.
Scenario #3 (Lie): This last scenario illustrates why familiarizing yourself with the particulars of your vehicle’s express warranty is so important. Ricky purchased a new vehicle, but he was forced to drive it so much for work that he exhausted his coverage prematurely. When he did notice that an issue with his transmission was affecting his ability to drive his Chrysler 300, it was already too late because he had crossed the 100,000-mile mark indicating that his warranty was no longer valid.
Is your new vehicle spending more and more time in the repair shop? If you would like to speak with an attorney who handles lemon law cases in Texas, please submit our free case evaluation form today.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.