Delaware Lemon Law
Owning a lemon is disheartening at best, and infuriating at worst. Going around and around with a dealer in an attempt to get your defective vehicle repaired can feel like a never-ending battle. Thankfully, Delaware has a lemon law on the books that can help you get justice for your lemon.
New cars: Yes
Used cars: No
Business vehicles: Yes
Leased vehicles: Yes
Lemon law period: 1 year
What is a Lemon Car Under Delaware Lemon Law?
Delaware lemon law covers new passenger vehicles, SUVs, vans, and trucks that are purchased or registered in Delaware, as well as used cars that are sold by dealers within one year of the original purchase or before the expiration of the manufacturer’s warranty (whichever comes first). In order to be considered a “lemon,” the vehicle must meet the following requirements:
- Does not conform to the manufacturer’s express warranty
- Has substantial defects affecting the use, safety, or value of the vehicle
- Has manufacturer’s defects that occurred during the first year from the original owner’s delivery date or before the expiration of the manufacturer’s warranty (whichever period ends first)
- Has been taken in four times for the same problem or if it has been out of service for 30 calendar days due to a series of unrelated problems
- After the dealer has tried to repair the vehicle four times, the manufacturer has been notified and given an opportunity to repair the vehicle
Delaware Statutes Title 6, Subtitle II, Chapter 50, Sections 5001-5009 is the state’s Lemon Law.
Getting Lemon Justice: Delaware Lemon Law Relief
Delaware lemon law provides several options for a successful lemon law claimant. First, you may be awarded a replacement vehicle of the same year, make, and model. You may also qualify for a monetary award, which can include:
- The full purchase price
- Sales tax
- License and registration fees
- Dealer preparation fees
- Attorney’s fees
The amount of the monetary reward may be reduced by a deduction for your use of the vehicle. This is calculated by dividing the number of miles driven when you first reported the defect to the dealer by 100,000, and multiplying by the purchase price.
Pursuing a DE Lemon Law Claim
If you want to pursue a claim under Delaware’s lemon law, you must first send a notification to the manufacturer and give them one last chance to repair the vehicle. The demand letter should be sent by certified mail, with a return receipt requested. Here’s a sample demand letter that you can adapt for your use.
Once you send the letter, the manufacturer must make a final repair attempt. If the problem still isn’t fixed, you must enter into the manufacturer’s dispute resolution process (for example, arbitration, conciliation, or mediation), if it is approved by the Department of Consumer Affairs, before you are eligible to file a Lemon Law claim in court. If you are offered a settlement through the arbitration process, you can decline the settlement and file suit.
How We Can Help
Wherever you are in the lemon law claim process, we’re happy to help. Whether you need help gathering the material documenting your lemon, submitting the final demand letter, negotiating a settlement, or suing the automaker, Lemberg Law will be at your side every step of the way.
Helping consumers is what we do. We’ve helped more than 12,000 people recover more than $35 million. You can read more about us here.
Remember that vehicle manufacturers have teams of lawyers that do nothing but fight lemon law claims. Lemon laws try to level playing field by forcing automakers to pay the consumer’s attorney fees in successful lemon law claims. That’s why our representation won’t cost you a dime.
There’s a limited window of opportunity for filing a lemon law claim. If you suspect you have a Delaware lemon, give us a call today. We understand your frustration, and will do our best to deliver the justice you deserve.