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Can an Attorney Help Me With Lemon Law in Michigan - broken car

Can an Attorney Help Me With Lemon Law in Michigan?

Can an Attorney Help Me With Lemon Law in Michigan?

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Can an Attorney Help Me With Lemon Law in Michigan?

They say when life gives you lemons, you are supposed to make lemonade. But when a car dealership sells you a lemon, you should contact a Michigan lemon law attorney.

Car dealerships partner with auto manufacturers to sell both new and pre-owned vehicles. The backing of an auto manufacturer includes providing legal support whenever an issue arises with a product or service. If you bought a defective motor vehicle, working with an experienced lemon law lawyer demonstrates how serious you are about receiving just compensation because of a defective vehicle.

A Michigan-licensed lemon law attorney possesses a comprehensive understanding of Michigan lemon laws. Michigan has enacted several statutes that protect consumers against unethical car dealerships and auto manufacturers. The Michigan lemon law attorney that you hire gathers and organizes all the paperwork required to build a compelling case. If your case goes in front of a civil judge, your legal counsel prepares you for the proceedings.

At Morgan & Morgan, we agree that when life gives you lemons, you make the best of it by making lemonade. However, when a car dealership gives you a lemon, you need to turn the lemon into just compensation. For more than 30 years, the consumer rights advocates at Morgan & Morgan have helped clients recover the money they invested in a defective motor vehicle. In some cases, our clients received monetary damages because a defective car caused one or more injuries.

Schedule a free case evaluation today to begin the legal process of getting back the money you invested in a lemon.

What Types of Motor Vehicles Are Covered by Michigan Lemon Laws?

When you meet with a Michigan lemon law attorney for the first time, the lawyer will determine whether Michigan lemon laws cover your motor vehicle. Michigan’s lemon laws apply to passenger cars, pickup trucks, and sport utility vehicles, as well as vans that are bought or leased in Michigan or bought/leased by a Michigan resident. The vans must include a manufacturer’s express warranty coverage at the time of lease or purchase. Michigan lemon laws do not protect consumers that bought or leased buses, motorcycles, motor homes, and off-road vehicles. Trucks that are not vans or pickups also do not receive legal protections under Michigan lemon laws.

How Does Michigan Define Vehicle Impairment?

Michigan lemon laws define a vehicle impairment as a "defect or condition that impairs the use or value of the new motor vehicle to the consumer." It is important to note that Michigan lemon laws measure a level of impairment from the consumer’s point of view instead of defining impairment from a car dealer’s or auto manufacturer’s perspective. A brake, engine, steering, and transmission defect meets the level of impairment as defined by Michigan lemon laws. Previous versions of Michigan lemon laws viewed less serious defects such as water leaks and low-quality paint from a car dealer’s or auto manufacturer’s point of view. Michigan legislators have strengthened the state’s lemon laws to protect consumers who experience less serious operational issues with their motor vehicles.

What Is the Legal Standard Used to Label a Motor Vehicle as a Lemon?

Michigan consumers may invoke a lemon law by fulfilling one of two legal standards. First, if you bought a new car and it has undergone repairs at least four times within two years since the date of the first repair job, you might qualify for legal protections under Michigan lemon laws. Second, your vehicle might be eligible for lemon law coverage if it has been out of service for 30 days or more during the warranty period of the vehicle or during the first year of ownership.

A Michigan lemon law attorney will determine which repair period to use, which is typically the earlier repair period. For example, if your vehicle underwent repairs for 30 days during the first year of ownership, your motor vehicle qualifies as a lemon because warranty periods frequently last more than one year.

Do I Have the Option to Request a Refund or Replacement Vehicle?

Michigan consumers that buy or lease a defective motor vehicle have the right to ask for a refund or approve a replacement car that carries a similar value as the lemon automobile. Calculating a reasonable value requires the legal expertise of a Michigan lemon law attorney. Without legal support, a car dealership or auto manufacturer might suggest a vehicle for replacement that possesses a much lower value than your defective vehicle. If you agree to replace a defective leased vehicle, the lease agreement must remain the same unless you need to change the vehicle identification number (VIN).

How Do I Receive a Refund or Replacement Car?

A Michigan motor vehicle owner must allow the auto manufacturer one final attempt to repair a lemon vehicle by sending a written notice to the auto manufacturer. The written notice should include a return receipt service to ensure the auto manufacturer has received the formal written notice. You have the right to send a written notice with return receipt service at any time after the auto manufacturer made the third reasonable attempt to fix your car. You also can send a written notice with return receipt service after your car has been out of service for a minimum of 25 days.

After receiving your written notice, the car manufacturer must inform you as soon as possible about where to take your vehicle for repair work. After the auto repair facility takes your car in for work, the repair facility has five days to make repairs. If the repair facility does not fix every operational problem within five days, you have the right to request a refund or a replacement vehicle of comparable value.

Does Michigan Lemon Laws Allow for Mediation?

Mediation represents a legal process that is a form of an alternative dispute resolution process. Both parties meet to negotiate the terms of a legal settlement under the guidance of a neutral third party called a mediator. For mediation to resolve a lemon car dispute, the auto manufacturer is legally responsible for following the terms of the settlement. However, the consumer that agreed to the settlement has the legal right to opt-out of the agreement under one of a limited number of conditions.

Many auto manufacturers want to change the mediation process into binding arbitration. One of the Michigan lemon law attorneys at Morgan & Morgan will describe the mediation process in more detail.

Why Should I Hire a Michigan Lemon Law Attorney?

If you have purchased a defective vehicle, turning to a highly-regarded Michigan lemon law attorney can help you recover your financial losses. If you have sustained one or more injuries because of a defective car, the lemon law attorney assigned to your case will work closely with one of our experienced personal injury lawyers to determine the best course of legal action.

Here are the reasons why you should hire a Michigan lemon law attorney:

Ensures You Receive Legal Protections

Hiring a Michigan lemon law attorney prevents the car dealership and auto manufacturer from taking advantage of you. If either party discovers you have not retained legal counsel, you might have to deal with underhanded tactics, such as facing coercion and receiving misleading information. Consumers that try to do their own legal work can face an overly aggressive auto manufacturer and/or a deceptive car dealership.

Advises You on Accepting a Refund or Replacement Vehicle

One of the most valuable services our lemon law attorneys provide is helping clients decide whether to accept a refund or replacement vehicle. The decision ultimately is yours, but you should consider several factors to determine how to proceed. You might not trust the car dealer or auto manufacturer to provide you with a suitable replacement car. Accepting a refund allows you the flexibility to shop for a similar make and model, but at another car dealership

Thorough Understanding of Michigan Lemon Laws

The Michigan lemon law attorney you work with from Morgan & Morgan understands every aspect of Michigan lemon laws. This is important because you have a limited amount of time to file a claim against a car dealer and/or auto manufacturer. Your legal counsel reviews the evidence associated with your case, which usually comes in the form of documents, and then compares the evidence to the appropriate Michigan lemon law statute.

Reduce Your Stress

Having to go through the legal process concerning a defective motor vehicle can trigger a considerable amount of stress. Without the legal support of a Michigan lemon law attorney, the stress you experience might cause you to make one or more rash decisions that benefit the other party. Hiring legal counsel to handle a defective vehicle case allows you to focus most of your attention on other things, which should prevent you from suffering personal and/or professional losses.

What Traits Should I Look for in a Michigan Lemon Law Attorney?

Now that you have discovered the importance of hiring a Michigan lemon law lawyer, what characteristics should you look for when hiring the best one? Firstly, experience is a crucial element regarding the hiring of legal counsel. Michigan lemon laws change constantly, which means an experienced litigator knows how to adapt to rapid change and remain composed under pressure. Experience also matters because your attorney might have previously interacted with the same car dealership and/or auto manufacturer.

Another important characteristic of the best Michigan lemon law attorneys concerns negotiation skills. The goal of your legal counsel is to get you the compensation that you deserve, which can come from a legal judgment or a settlement agreement produced by several rounds of negotiations. Your lawyer should possess superior negotiation skills, from knowing when to accept a counteroffer to negotiating a settlement under the guidance of a neutral mediator.

Finally, your Michigan lemon law attorney should be a responsive communicator. From the first message left on a lawyer’s voicemail system to the last email sent after receiving a check for just compensation, the legal counsel you hire should respond promptly to all forms of your communications. An attorney who is an excellent communicator also knows how to describe different legal maneuvers for legal novices to understand easily.

Why Choose Morgan & Morgan?

Since 1988, Morgan & Morgan has fought for clients that have bought a defective motor vehicle. We understand the anger and frustration that is associated with the feeling of being “had.” In addition to our experienced team of litigators, we also encourage our clients whenever they feel like quitting the good fight.

Learn more about our commitment to helping our clients recover from financial losses by scheduling a free case evaluation.

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Last updated on May 05, 2022