Lemon Law in West Virginia
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West Virginia offers protection against the purchase of "lemons," vehicles that don't meet the requirements and obligations under the terms of warranties. The Better Business Bureau offers a comprehensive section full of information regarding the Lemon Law and how to file a Lemon Law or auto warranty complaint.
Simply put, lemons in West Virginia are any passenger vehicles (including vans and pickup trucks weighing no more than 8,000 pounds, and motor homes) that are sold new to a consumer in the state but are flawed and unable to be repaired after a reasonable number of attempts.
If the vehicle can't be repaired within the terms of the warranty after a reasonable number of attempts, you may have a lemon. "Reasonable repair attempts" are considered one time for conditions that could result in death or serious bodily injury, and three times for all other conditions.
It is the duty of the manuafacturer, agent, or authorized dealer to replace the vehicle. It is also the right of the consumer to sue for repurchase if the vehicle is not replaced.
Matters should be initially handled with the manufacturer, agent, or authorized dealer. However, attorneys who specialize in the Lemon Law can assist with legal matters. And in West Virginia, you can file a lawsuit without having to arbitrate your claim.
Other contact information regarding the Lemon Law is as follows:
- 1900 Kanawha Blvd., Room 26E
- Charleston, WV 25305-9924
- Main office: (304) 558-2021
- In-state consumer hotline: (304) 558-8986
- In-state toll-free: (800) 368-8808
If your vehicle is indeed a lemon, you could be entitled to a full or partial refund or the replacement or repurchase of your vehicle. This reimbursement may include:
- Sales tax, license and registration fees, expenses incurred due to the purchase of the new vehicle, and/or damages for the diminished value of the vehicle.
- Damages for the cost of repairs.
- Damages for the loss of use and inconvenience.
- Attorney fees.
Even if you don't suspect your vehicle is a lemon, it's important to be aware of these facts for future reference:
- All manuafacturers are required to inform you of your rights under the Lemon Law in the form of a written statement.
- Dealers are required to inform you in the form of a written statement of any repairs performed on the new vehicle if they were performed after shipment and equal or excceed $500. This doesn't include identical part replacement such as tires and antennae.
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- Vehicles returned under the Lemon Law may not be resold in West Virginia unless the required repairs have been made and a written statement is provided informing the new consumer of such.
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