Lemon Laws in Arizona

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The Arizona lemon law applies to cars that are less than two years old or have less than 24,000 miles and have a defect that seriously impacts their use or safety.
In the car world, a lemon is a vehicle that has a serious defect—one that makes it either unsafe or impossible to drive. Discovering you’ve bought a lemon can be a sour revelation, and the complexity of the lemon law claims process doesn’t make things any better.
Thankfully, the car insurance broker app Jerry has compiled everything you need to know about lemon laws in Arizona to make the claims process as easy as possible.
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What is a lemon law?

A lemon is a car that’s sold with a major mechanical problem, usually making it unsafe (and sometimes impossible) to operate. Lemon laws typically offer compensation or reimbursement for a defective car under specific parameters. Taking action under lemon laws is a complex legal process that owners should understand when they purchase a vehicle, new or used.
Rules on how claims work change from state to state based on mileage, warranty period, and even the number of repair attempts. That means it can be difficult to find out if you’re entitled to compensation for your defective car. Thankfully, Jerry, has you covered.
Here’s a rundown of what you can expect from lemon laws in Arizona.

Is there a lemon law in Arizona?

Yes. There’s a pretty robust lemon law in Arizona, especially for new car buyers. Used cars are less protected but still have rights to claim.

Is my defect covered under the lemon law?

It depends on what your vehicle is and under what terms you acquired it. Any vehicle—including motorbikes and the car portion of motorhomes—with a substantial defect is covered.
Arizona defines substantial defects as “nonconformities”—that is, anything that significantly impairs the usability of a vehicle.
Lemon law rights can be claimed if a new car with a nonconformity fails four reasonable attempts to fix it. These attempts must be made within the first two years or 24,000 miles of use.
Used cars get limited protections, with laws applying for the first 15 days or 500 miles of use.
Here’s the breakdown:
  • A new car is considered a lemon if it has a nonconformity that cannot be fixed after four reasonable repair attempts—owners can ask for a refund or replacement vehicle
  • Used cars are considered lemons if a major component of the vehicle breaks within the first 15 days or 500 miles of use—owners can file for a full refund of the price paid for the car
  • Drivers can also file for lemon law protections if their car has been out of service for 30 calendar days
Key Takeaway If your car has defects that significantly affect its use, market value, or safety, it may be considered a lemon.

Are used cars covered under the lemon law?

Yes, used cars are covered under the lemon law. Arizona has a relatively limited lemon law for used cars, protecting only the first 15 days of ownership or 500 miles of use.
There are no special provisions for private sales.

What about new cars?

New cars are covered under Arizona’s lemon law. The law applies to the first two years of ownership or 12,000 miles of usage. Claims can be filed for up to six months after that period expires.

How to pursue your lemon law rights in Arizona

Report and repair

If you think your car is a lemon, you must report it within two years of purchase or the first 12,000 miles. After you report the fault, an authorized dealership has four attempts to fix it.
You should keep records of every repair attempt, such as an invoice or any other document.

Go for arbitration

Before you pursue messy legal action, you should consider arbitration with your manufacturer. Most carmakers have something in place to allow you to come to an agreement in a more informal manner.
If arbitration is ineffective, then you should pursue legal action. Hire an attorney for the process, as it can get complicated. When collecting all of your documentation, make sure you do everything correctly as being precise will help bolster your case.
Of course, even if you do everything right, you still might not win your case. Good lawyers are trained to combat these claims, and the manufacturer will have at least one on their side.
Key Takeaway Give arbitration a go first—but if you do pursue legal action, you need to have everything prepared and should hire legal counsel.
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Lemon law tips

Here are some important things to keep in mind:
  • Be aware that lemon law claims can’t be made on vehicles that owners have modified significantly
  • Lemon laws won’t apply if the defect is a result of abuse, neglect, or misuse of the vehicle
  • Repair attempts should be conducted by dealership or manufacturer authorized mechanics
  • When you’re getting your vehicle looked at, be consistent with the wording of the problem—numerous repair attempts have to be made on the same defect for it to qualify as a lemon
  • If you lose your case or if the law doesn’t apply, there are still other options—look into the Federal Magnuson–Moss Warranty Act, which offers similar consumer protections

Finding cheap car insurance

Regardless of the condition of the vehicle you’re purchasing, it’s important to have the right insurance. And if you want to save money on car insurance, the Jerry app is a great place to start.
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