In Virginia, when your new car has a defect that cannot be repaired with a reasonable number of attempts, you may be eligible for a full refund or a replacement of the car under the commonwealth’s Lemon Law. In order to prove your claim, you will need to provide evidence of the defect and of the attempts by the dealer to repair it. It is up to you to make sure that every trip to the repair shop is documented and that the documentation includes the details that will be needed to prove your claim.
What Your Repair Record Should Show
To win a Lemon Law claim, you must prove that the dealer is unable to repair the same issue repeatedly. This requires consistent statements from you and clear documentation from the dealer. The following are important tips that will help you back up a Lemon Law claim:
When dropping off the car, be sure to describe the problem in detail, including any sounds and smells you notice. Make sure your descriptions are the same every time.
Make sure the service adviser includes all of your details in the repair order. Do not sign the order if he has not included your description of the problem.
When picking up the car, make sure the documentation you are given describes the work that was done—including any parts that were replaced—in detail. And even if the service writer says they did not list your complaint beauase it could not be duplicated, insist that it be listed to prove you did complain about it.
Make sure the repair order includes the dates the car was in the shop for repairs. Cars can qualify as a lemon based on the number of days it is out of service.
Even if the dealer tries different approaches to repair the problem, if the initial complaint is the same, these attempts will count towards a Lemon Law claim.
In many cases, a successful Lemon Law claim comes down to the documentation you can provide. The first time you take your new car in with a complaint, you probably do not have a Lemon Law claim in mind, but it's still important that you document that first repair just in case. This repair log will become an important piece of evidence.
Call a Lemon Law Attorney
With proper documentation, your Lemon Law claim should be straightforward, but if you get push-back from a dealer, you may need an experienced Lemon Law attorney on your side. Call The Consumer Law Group for more information.