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Missouri Lemon Law
If you've just gone into debt for a brand new set of wheels, it can be frustrating to discover that your new car has some serious problems. Fortunately, the Missouri New Vehicles Warranty Law can help. Also known as the lemon law, this statute protects drivers by forcing manufacturers to honor a vehicle's express warranty.
Basically, the lemon law requires vehicle manufacturers to replace or refund your defective vehicle after a reasonable number of failed attempts have been made to fix the problem.
On this page you'll find an overview of the Missouri lemon law and what to do if you've ended up with a lemon.
The Missouri lemon law covers purchased and lease-purchased vehicles that are under the manufacturer's new vehicle warranty.
The following vehicles are not protected by the MO lemon law:
- Commercial vehicles.
- Off-road vehicles.
- The living quarters of motorhomes and recreational vehicles.
To qualify for protection under the Missouri New Vehicles Warranty Law, your vehicle must have been out of service for 30 business days or more, or has had 4 attempts or more to repair the vehicle. If your complaint is found to be valid, you will be entitled to either a replacement vehicle or a refund of the vehicle's purchase price.
Before you can file a legal complaint under the Missouri New Vehicles Warranty Law, you must provide a formal notice to the vehicle's manufacturer to allow the company a final opportunity to correct the problem.
If the manufacturer is not able to fix your vehicle's defect after the final attempt, it will either:
- Offer you a replacement vehicle.
- Refund your original purchase.
- Dispute the fact that your car is a lemon.
If a manufacturer denies your request, you can either begin an informal dispute process or file a lawsuit, if the manufacturer does not offer an informal dispute service. Check your vehicle owner's manual or contact the manufacturer for details.
If you are not satisfied with the results of your informal dispute you can file a lawsuit.
For more information about the Missouri lemon law and your options, please contact the Missouri Attorney General consumer protection hotline at (800) 392-8222.
If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney.
To learn more about the Missouri New Vehicles Warranty Law and other consumer protections for motorists, you can download an All About Autos guide from the Missouri Attorney General's office.
Since the Missouri New Vehicles Warranty Law doesn't apply to used cars, purchasing a previously owned motor vehicle requires a leap of faith. To minimize the risk involved, the attorney general recommends the following:
- Test drive the vehicle under a variety of traffic conditions.
- Inspect the car for any dings, dents, or signs of cosmetic damage.
- Have a qualified mechanic inspect the vehicle before you purchase it.
- Do a title search to determine if the vehicle has ever been in an accident, stolen, or used as a rental car.
- Get a signed copy of any applicable warranties.
- If you'll be driving in the St. Louis area, get a copy of the vehicle's emissions inspection report.
If you have problems dealing with a mechanic who has promised to repair your used car, you may be able to resolve the dispute under the Merchandising Practices Act of the Missouri Revised Statues.Other Topics in This Section