Maryland Lemon Law
If you live in Maryland and think you’ve bought a defective vehicle, don’t give up hope. Lemon laws are on the books to help people just like you. Here’s a quick summary of Maryland lemon law:
New cars: Yes
Used cars: No
Business vehicles: Yes
Leased vehicles: Yes
Lemon law period: 2 years/18,000 miles
What is a Lemon Car Under Maryland Lemon Law?
Maryland lemon law covers new and leased passenger vehicles, SUVs, vans, trucks under 3/4 ton, and motorcycles that are registered in Maryland, as well as used cars that are sold by dealers within 15 months or 15,000 miles of the original purchase (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 defects that substantially impair the vehicle’s use, safety, or value
- Has manufacturer’s defects that occurred during the first 2 years from the original owner’s delivery date or the first 18,000 miles on the odometer (whichever period ends first)
- Has a brake or steering failure that was not corrected after the first repair attempt, and that causes the vehicle to fail Maryland’s safety inspection; or has any one problem that was not corrected in four repair attempts; or has any number of problems that have caused it to be out of service for a cumulative total of 30 days
Annotated Code of Maryland, Commercial Law sections 14-1501 through 14-1504 and sections 14-2001 through 14-2007 are the state’s lemon laws.
Getting Lemon Justice: Maryland Lemon Law Relief
Maryland 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. Second, you may be given the opportunity to return the vehicle for a refund of the full purchase price, less a mileage deduction for the use of the vehicle (not to exceed 15 percent of the purchase price). In addition, if the court finds that the manufacturer acted in bad faith, the manufacturer may be ordered to pay you an additional amount, up to $10,000.
Pursuing a MD Lemon Law Claim
Under Maryland lemon law, you must notify the manufacturer in writing and ask for assistance with your lemon, but you don’t need to wait until there have been four repair attempts to do so. Your notification should be sent by certified mail, with a return receipt requested. Here’s a sample demand letter that you can adapt for your use.
The manufacturer has 30 days from the time it receives your letter to fix the problem. If the defect isn’t repaired, your vehicle qualifies for Maryland’s lemon law, and the manufacturer is required to replace your vehicle or buy it back, whichever you prefer.
If the manufacturer refuses to buy back or replace your lemon, you can either use the manufacturer’s arbitration program (although you are not bound by its decision) or file a lawsuit in court.
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 appealing the arbitration decision, Lemberg Law will be at your side every step of the way.
Helping consumers is what we do. We’ve helped more than 15,000 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 Maryland lemon, give us a call today. We understand your frustration, and will do our best to deliver the justice you deserve.