What To Do If A Dealership Sells You A Lemon

From a lemon law attorney’s perspective, every new car or RV buyer should go into the purchase hoping for the best but preparing for the worst. Your actions starting on your first day of ownership can make or break your lemon law case so here are our top tips for what to do if a dealership sells you a lemon.

Get Organized

The first thing a lemon law attorney will ask you for is a copy of your purchase contract and all of your repair orders. Make sure you have a safe and secure place where you will keep all of the records for your car or RV throughout your ownership. 

Don’t Wait 

The second you notice something wrong with your car or RV schedule a repair appointment as soon as possible! The lemon law has a built in mileage offset (also called a usage deduction) for your trouble free miles so the law will assume the mileage on that first repair order is when you first started having problems and you can be charged for that mileage. Don’t let the manufacturer make any more money off of you by waiting to take your car or RV in! 

For RVs, delayed repair appointments are most dealerships’ MO right now so if your local dealership is quoting you a 2-3 month wait to get in for service, get them to put that in writing. Emails are a great way to document when you’re requesting a repair visit as well as listing all of the issues you want them to look at since it tends to be a longer list than car repairs, as well as getting them to confirm it’s a long wait to even get in. Depending on your circumstances, it may be a better idea to get the delayed appointment in writing, but try to get in for service at another authorized repair facility in the meantime, and let the manufacturer know you’re having these issues just getting a timely appointment. For a personalized strategy, call us for a free consultation. 


Don’t trust that the dealerships are always going to be honest and confirm the issues you know your car or RV has. If possible, always document the issues you’re having so that you don’t have to rely completely on them for evidence that your car or RV is a lemon. Videos and photos are great, and if you want to take it a step further and take notes regarding when the issues are happening, it will give you and your lemon law attorney that much more ammunition to use against the manufacturer. 

Talk To An Attorney 

You might think, of course the attorney is going to say talk to an attorney instead of doing things on your own, but hear me out. Manufacturers are a business and unfortunately their loyalties don’t lie with you, they lie in their profits. I’ve heard so many stories of people trying to negotiate with the manufacturer on their own, only to be tricked out of thousands of dollars or strung along for months. Sure, their reps can be nice (sometimes), but they have no obligation to explain anything to you (especially that fine print and legal jargon) and they sure don’t have any obligation to get you the maximum settlement possible. So if your ‘DIY negotiate with the manufacturer alone’ way of handling things behind door number one doesn’t sound too promising anymore, there’s another option. 

Behind door number two is the option to work with a lemon law attorney and for this example I’ll talk about how our firm works. We provide free consultations to anyone that calls. These free consultations include strategizing on how to get you what you want as fast as possible and can include walking you through how to build a lemon law case if you’re close but not quite there. If the manufacturer doesn’t want to play ball without a lawsuit, then we sue them, once again at no cost to you. You might be thinking this sounds too good to be true, but for once it’s not. We’ll still get paid for all of our time and expenses, but that money will come directly from the manufacturer, not you. It’s a way the lemon law protects consumers and punishes manufacturers for not doing the right thing in the first place. 

Free Means Free

We’re also one of the few lemon law firms that do not charge our clients a contingency fee. The law says we get all of our attorney’s fees from the manufacturer, so we see no need to take any money out of your pocket when that’s not what the law intended. That’s another way you know we’re on your side. If you don’t get paid, we don’t get paid, so you can be assured that your fight is our fight (and trust me, we want to get paid for your lemon as much as you do). 

So, will you choose door number one where you will likely get scammed or strung along by the manufacturer, or door number two where you’ll have an experienced, effective, and ethical attorney by your side at no cost to you? 

For those that chose door number two, you can schedule your free consultation by emailing me (West Coast Lemons’ founder Michelle Fonseca-Kamana) directly at mfkamana@westcoastlemons.com , or calling the office at 714-804-5546, or toll free at (888) 959-3500. 

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1197 Timbergate Lane 

Brea CA 92821

Orange County Office: 

1327 N. Broadway 

Santa Ana, CA 92706

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145 S. Spring Street 

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Los Angeles, CA 90012

Phone: 714-804-5546 

Toll Free: 888-959-3500

Fax: 714-592-0803

Email: mfkamana@westcoastlemons.com


The information contained on this website is meant for general information and advertisement purposes only and is not intended to be construed as legal advice. Use of this website or contact form does not create an attorney client relationship. West Coast Lemons makes no representations that any of it’s attorneys are certified as specialists in any area of law by any state board of legal specialization. The testimonials, reviews, or articles found on this website do not constitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter.