Are Used Cars Covered Under Lemon Laws?

Everyone and their mother has heard of lemon laws. Most of the time, shoppers know lemon laws for the protection they can offer to new cars. But, if you are shopping for a used car, is your purchase protected by lemon laws, or are you on your own? Well, it depends. There are a few factors to determining whether your investment is protected. 

How to know whether you are covered?

With the auto market being so upside down, more shoppers are choosing a used car over a new model. The need for a new vehicle is crazy, with manufacturers unable to keep up with the crazy demand resulting from parts shortages. This is an unprecedented time and has made it more important to shop for a reliable used car.

Because of the popularity of used cars, you want to do the research necessary to ensure you don’t buy a lemon. Determining whether lemon laws cover your purchase depends on your state. BBB AUTO LINE has all of the state lemon laws available for you to review.

Congratulations, you’re covered; now what?

law books on a bookshelf
Law Books on a Bookshelf | Aleix Ventayol via Unsplash

Great, you found out your state’s lemon law covers your used car purchase, but now what? Lemon laws can be very confusing and complicated. The state’s law may protect the used car, but they can have specific stipulations on how the coverage works. For example:

  • Depending on your state, your used car may only be covered if it was both bought and registered in the same state
  • Your coverage may be dependent on the fact that you purchased the vehicle through a dealership and not a private sale
  • Additionally, you may only have coverage if you bought a demo model, or if you purchased a demo model, you might not have coverage
  • Usually, the reference point for coverage will be the original date of purchase or first service date instead of when you purchase the car
  • There may be a deadline based on the age and mileage of your used car
  • Sometimes, only issues that are reported to the automaker or dealership during a specific date range are considered

If you are in a state where those specifics apply, you will need help getting everything straightened out. Luckily, BBB AUTO LINE is more than happy to help!

What to do if you need to submit a claim?

a lemon against a yellow background, which is another term for a used car that has lots of problems
A Lemon Against a Yellow Background; Another Term for a Faulty Used Car | Giorgio Trovato via Unsplash

If you have coverage from your state or your issues meet the federal lemon law, you will want to submit a claim to have your problems taken care of. That will mean getting together the necessary documents and paperwork. Furthermore, you will want to reach out to BBB AUTO LINE, and they can give you the guidance you need. Your used car needs to be a part of one of their participating manufacturers to work with them. As long as your used car is one of these participating automakers, BBB AUTO LINE can help you resolve the issue. They can help you to take advantage of the protections that the lemon laws offer.

Feel more confident in shopping for a used car

a used car dealership loaded up with a variety of used models
A Used Car Dealership Lot | Justin Sullivan via Getty Images

It has never been more important to feel more confident in shopping for a used car. Many shoppers need to consider a used model because of how tough it can be to find a new car. As long as you are confident in shopping for a used car and better understand the inherent risks involved with a used model, this is also one of the best times to shop for a used car.

If you want to make sure your used car is more than ready to last for many years to come, read up on these lemon laws and get prepared to be protected.

RELATED: My Car’s Broken: How Do Lemon Laws Work?