Our San Francisco Office

Why Should I File a Lemon Law Claim?

Why does anyone need a San Francisco lemon law attorney? Well, it is theoretically possible to win a lemon law case in California without a lawyer. But when it comes to persuading a multibillion-dollar car company to do the right thing, the threat of a lawsuit may be what it takes. Fortunately, Neale & Fhima’s lemon law clients rarely step foot inside a courthouse. In fact, if you prefer, we may be able to consult with you entirely by telephone and email.

Here are some additional reasons why Bay Area residents with a valid lemon law claim should assert their rights:

Driving a lemon vehicle is dangerous.

Today’s automobiles are loaded with high-tech safety features. Like any new technology, these systems can experience problems, putting the safety of drivers and their passengers at risk. Even basic automotive functions like steering and braking can cause serious accidents when they do not work properly. Do not get stuck driving a vehicle with a dangerous defect. File a lemon law claim and insist that the manufacturer buy back the vehicle or provide you with a new one.

Your time is valuable.

With so many fun things to do in San Francisco, the waiting area of a dealership’s repair department is no place to spend your free time. California’s lemon law gives dealerships a “reasonable” number of chances to perform warranty repair work correctly. If they take too long, it is time to contact Neale & Fhima and begin the lemon law claims process.

Filing a claim makes financial sense.

Purchasing a new vehicle is a significant financial investment. When that vehicle begins to have mechanical problems, it can bring on an extreme case of buyer’s remorse. There is no need to feel badly about acquiring a defective vehicle. The manufacturer is to blame – not you. Our lemon law attorneys can help you get your purchase money back.

You can hire a Neale & Fhima, San Francisco lemon law attorney to represent you for free.

Did you know that the lemon law in our state contains a fee-shifting provision? Of all the unique aspects of California’s lemon law, this provision has probably done more to benefit consumers than any other. Here is how it works. If you win your lemon law claim, we collect our legal fees directly from the car company. If your claim is unsuccessful, your San Francisco lemon law attorney does not get paid, and you owe nothing.  You have nothing to lose by hiring us to represent you in your lemon law case.

If you fail to act now, it may be too late.

Do not let the fact that California has a consumer-friendly lemon law give you a false sense of security. If you wait too long to act, you will forfeit your rights forever. The most crucial deadline is your factory warranty expiration date. Regardless of when you discovered the defect, you must take your vehicle to the dealership for repair before the warranty expires. Doing so (and obtaining a copy of the work order to prove it) will preserve your right to file a claim if the dealer is ultimately unable to make the repairs.

More About the Lemon Law

The California lemon law protects consumers, but it is confusing; and it is risky for the layman to attempt to collect under the law without a San Francisco lemon law lawyer.

For example, you may have heard a friend in San Francisco tell you that if a car has had four repair attempts, it is a lemon. This is not the case. In the real world, most lemon law lawsuits have no, exact, black-and-white rule to determine whether the manufacturer had enough ‘reasonable’ attempts to fix it. Instead, the issue about if the number which is “reasonable” is up to the jury. It is a question for the jury, so there is no way to be certain about the number of repair attempts required before the car is a lemon under the law.

However, we do know that the appellate courts have set a minimum number of repair attempts that must have been made before a lemon law case can proceed. That number is at least two.

The ‘four attempts’ guideline is just an estimate, and who knows what the jury will decide. The jury could say that two attempts was enough. Also, if the car has been out of service for at least 30 days, this could be viewed by a jury as sufficient proof that the car is a lemon.

But, clearly, there is much legal gray area above, which is why an attorney should be used in your lemon law case.

Lemon Law Lawyers in San Francisco

California’s lemon law has continued to evolve since it was first enacted nearly 50 years ago. The legislature amends the statute periodically, and the courts hand down opinions interpreting its meaning. What we have now is a complex set of rules that can present problems for even the most business-savvy vehicle owners in San Francisco. The good news is that Neale & Fhima, a successful San Francisco lemon law attorney firm, recently opened an office in the heart of the city. To learn whether your vehicle qualifies as a lemon, contact our office at (415) 901-8128 or submit the form below.