Oklahoma Lemon Law
The Oklahoma lemon law protects state residents from having to pay for vehicles purchased new from the manufacturer or licensed dealer that have started to have significant problems with vehicle parts covered by the auto warranty.
Unfortunately, no similar used car lemon law exists in the state to protect buyers of used cars from having to pay for used vehicles that turn out to be lemons.
Oklahoma law reflects federal policies for consumer protection, but the state has not designated a single state body to oversee consumer protection disputes.
Instead, owners of vehicles that are suspected to be lemons must deal directly with the manufacturer or car dealer who sold the vehicle.
According to state law, vehicles owned by eligible buyers that are deemed to be lemons must be refunded at the original purchase price or exchanged for a vehicle of equal value by the manufacturer or licensed dealer.
Many Oklahoma citizens hire a lemon law attorney to help them go through the entire process of qualifying for consumer protection and seeking payment for damages.
While it is not necessary to hire a lawyer specialized in OK car lemon law to bring about a suit, it is the preferred method of moving forward with the dispute.
This action helps the consumers who want to be sure that they will receive a fair reimbursement for the vehicle at the end of the process without spending hours of time learning about OK consumer protection laws.
Consumers can watch out for signs of defects before purchasing new vehicles to try and avoid purchasing a lemon in the first place as well. Consumers can read on to learn more about what to do if a car turns out to be a lemon.
What is the Lemon Law in Oklahoma?
In Oklahoma, the lemon law definition covers owners of all new vehicles that require registration and that have a gross weight of under 10,000 pounds, except for the living area of mobile homes.
Vehicles may be eligible for a lemon law buyback if they have started to have problems with a covered aspect of the vehicle that negatively impacts the vehicle’s use or performance.
Covered issues must not have been caused by the use or modification of the vehicle by the owner to be eligible. Owners of new vehicles can be considered eligible for protection under consumer right laws if they:
- Purchased the vehicle in Oklahoma for personal use OR
- Received the vehicle through a title transfer process while the vehicle was still under its manufacturer’s warranty OR
- Are permitted rights to the vehicle under the vehicle’s original warranty.
A 30 day lemon law for used cars is popular in some states, but in OK only new vehicles are covered under consumer protection laws when they fail to expressly meet up to the standards set out in the manufacturer’s warranty.
Complaints about vehicles that do not meet state or federal lemon law requirements must be made in writing to the manufacturer or licensed dealer who sold the car within one year of its original delivery date to the owner or while the vehicle is still under its original warranty.
Does the Oklahoma Lemon Law apply to used cars?
Unfortunately, the new car lemon law in Oklahoma provides practically no coverage for owners of used vehicles living in the state.
Used car laws provide for only one exception to this general rule: vehicles which were bought used while they were still under their manufacturer’s original warranty.
Essentially, these vehicles are considered “new” from the perspective of the law and can still take advantage of all of the consumer protection laws afforded to vehicles purchased new from the manufacturer or a licensed dealer.
How does the Lemon Law work in Oklahoma?
The state lemon law of Oklahoma requires that vehicle owners take action immediately when they believe they may have purchased a lemon. To take advantage of the lemon law warranty, consumers must directly contact the manufacturer or dealer who sold the car.
This must be done in writing during the vehicle’s original warranty coverage period or within one year or receiving the vehicle, whichever is sooner.
Once the manufacturer or dealer has been alerted to the problems with the vehicle, they have the right to make a reasonable number of attempts to repair the problem before they are required to offer the owner reimbursement.
In Oklahoma, a reasonable number of repair attempts is considered:
- Four failed repair attempts for the same issue OR
- Having the vehicle sit out of service for a cumulative 30 days.
Once a vehicle is eligible for a lemon law buyback process, the manufacturer or dealer and the vehicle owner enter into negotiation procedures to decide how much of a refund the owner is entitled to.
According to federal lemon law, vehicle owners are entitled to a refund of the original purchase price plus any additional costs incurred through its purchase, such as fees and taxes (but not including interest on financial products).
The manufacturer or licensed dealer is allowed to submit allowed deductions for use as well.
Oklahoma Lemon Law Lawyers
Lemon law lawyers in Oklahoma are able to offer years of experience of dealing with the auto industry and the OK legal system to vehicle owners who think they may have purchased a lemon.
Although OK consumers are not required to hire professional representation, hiring a lemon law attorney is the preferred choice of many vehicle owners because of how much they can increase the likelihood of a vehicle being deemed a lemon and of the owner receiving a fair amount of compensation through the process.
Vehicles that have constant problems but that are still drivable, for instance, present a problem for many vehicle owners when trying to prove that the vehicle meets consumer protection guidelines for a refund.
Experienced legal representation can make sure that the vehicle owner takes the steps that are necessary and receives the required documentation to get the vehicle approved as a lemon.
Oklahoma lemon law attorneys can also be incredibly helpful when it comes to negotiating the value of the vehicle designated as a lemon.
While the basis for the calculation of the vehicle is its original purchase price, a lemon law lawyer can help make sure all of the possible additional fees and taxes that were charges the vehicle owner at the time of purchase are refunded.
They can also ensure that unnecessary deductions are not subtracted from the car’s value by the company which sold the vehicle for allowed use.
Finding the right attorney for your needs starts by doing some online research to find out who is available in your area with experience working with consumer protection laws referring to vehicle ownership.
In many cases, these lawyers will not request to be paid until the vehicle owner has successfully been reimbursed for the lemon and possibly even for necessary legal costs.
How to Tell if Your New Car Is a Lemon
Recognizing that a vehicle fits the lemon law definition in Oklahoma is no easy task, even for experienced mechanics. In fact, the federal lemon law exists because it is so hard to recognize a defective vehicle before it is significantly road-tested by the owner.
Before making a purchase, shoppers can look into the history of the make and model they are considering to make sure it has not had any manufacturer recalls or been the subject of multiple lemon disputes.
One of the best ways owners of new vehicles can protect themselves is by being familiar with their rights under their vehicle’s warranty and to make sure they follow all necessary warranty policies (including time periods).
Most often, manufacturer defects in vehicles will end up being in one of the following categories:
- Gas and mileage defects.
- Electrical system defects.
- Engine defects.
- Shifting defects.
- Steering defects.