Lemon Law in Utah
One of the most favorite Latin expressions embraced by any type of manufacturer is “caveat emptor.” Loosely translated, this means “buyer beware.” When the maker of a product is able to hide behind “caveat emptor” then the consumer stands a good chance of losing what they paid for that product. This is why every state has enacted their own version of automobile lemon laws.
The car buyer doesn’t have to “beware” when they are protected by the law. The Utah Lemon Law is called the New Motor Vehicle Warranties Act and is on the books as R152-20.
Buying a lemon car means you’ve gotten a motor vehicle that is not performing as promised. When this law was first enacted in Utah, it covered just automobiles. However, in 1990 the law was extended to cover any new car, leased car or motor home that was still under warranty. The definition of new typically refers to a car with less than 7,500 miles and just a under the one year warranty. Within those boundaries Utah’s Lemon Law there are still restrictions that have to be dealt with.
Utah Lemon Law Qualifications
If you buy a car and end up not liking the color or the way the seats feel, you won’t be able to get a refund under Utah’s Lemon Law. Basically, the car has to be inoperable or in a constant need of repair for a single defect. You also had to have bought the car in Utah. It also has to be deemed a new car and still covered under the original manufacturer’s warranty.
To be considered a true lemon the law declares that whatever is wrong with the car must “substantially impair the use, market value or safety of the vehicle.” A broken windshield wiper isn’t going to cut it. The lemon car must also have been taken to a mechanic for the repair of the same problem on at least four separate occasions or have been sidelined for at least 30 days.
Whatever the problem of the car might be, it certainly can’t be because of any changes or neglect that was the fault of the car owner. If you don’t change oil and your gears freeze up, that’s on you! Additionally, you will need to go through whatever type of dispute procedure has been established by the manufacturer within the same time frame. Look at the fine print on your contract. That’s where all the details will be.
Utah Lemon Law Compensation
If your car has been deemed an official lemon you will be entitled to a brand new car (same make and model) or a complete cash refund. On the other hand, the manufacturer is also entitled to charge back any mileage on the car within reason. You might also be entitled to a refund of any sales taxes, document preparation fees, or the costs of extended warranties that were added to the purchase price.
If you have leased the car that turns out to be a lemon, you will be entitled to a refund of all your payments. You’ll also be entitled to have a new car for a fresh lease agreement if that is what you desire.