When it comes to used car laws, New York lemon laws are among the best in the nation. When you purchase a used car in NY, you not only get a car bill of sale, but you also get what’s known as a lemon law warranty. This warranty can give you the peace of mind you need when you purchase a previously owned vehicle.
While NY lemon laws are fairly straightforward, there are some finer points that consumers sometimes miss. Here are three you should be aware of:
1. Private sales aren’t covered. If you purchase your used vehicle from another individual, your car won’t necessarily be covered by New York lemon law. Only those vehicles purchased from a dealer are included in lemon law coverage. However, the law defines “dealer” fairly broadly, as someone (a person or business) who sells or leases a vehicle after selling or leasing three used cars in the previous 12 months. Cars purchased at retail auto auctions are also covered by NY lemon laws. However, there are certain companies that are excluded from the definition of a dealer, including banks, regulated public utilities, state and local government agencies, and a business that sells a company car to an employee.
2. If you buy from a dealer, you’re covered. If a used car dealer meets the definition of a dealer under New York lemon law, you have the protections of a used car warranty – whether or not the dealer actually gives you the warranty. The law says that you’re covered, and that you can’t waive your rights under New York used car laws. So, if you unknowingly signed a contract containing a clause saying you waive your rights, that clause is null and void.
3. The value of your trade-in may be adjusted. In the case of a lemon buyback, NY lemon laws say that the dealer doesn’t necessarily have to refund the amount listed in your sales contract for your trade-in. Instead, he may use the wholesale value of your vehicle, as determined by the NADA Used Car Guide. If he still has your old vehicle on the lot, he also has the right to return your trade-in in lieu of refunding the money you received from your trade-in. However, you’re still entitled to a refund of the money you paid for the car you purchased.
Although New York offers consumers considerable protection under its lemon law, most people aren’t prepared to go toe-to-toe with dealers when they find they’ve purchased a used car lemon. That’s why you need an attorney by your side who specializes in fighting car dealers and auto manufacturers. If you think you have a used car lemon on your hands, contact LemonJustice.com today. Our attorneys are standing by, ready to help you get the justice you deserve.